There are so many things to say about the recently launched Farpoint VR. If you’re following us on our Twitch channel, you are probably aware how we persistently tried to set everything up and frivolously played through the 1st hour of the game.
We don’t want to beat around the bush, but it is our obligation to say that the game is pretty short but the gameplay experience it offered made it unforgettable. Allan and I played through its multiplayer element, and it proved to be a great escape from reality albeit heavy on bandwidth requirement and time to set everything up.
We sat down to gather our thoughts about the game, and he’s our collaborated review.
Gian: Farpoint has a relatively straightforward story. You’re part of a crew. Something messed up. You got dumped in a planet filled with alien crabs. You die if you don’t know how to shoot. Anything in between are ornaments, made beautiful by There is nothing too wild and different about the story, which let me conclude that the focus of the game is more on the experience department. Normally, an unhealthy mix of story and experience make a bad game, but Farpoint VR is a an exception.
Allan: I’ve only played a few VR games myself and most of these are experiential and usually fall short on the story department. Farpoint though makes a great go at it. Of course with the VR headset on, Farpoint attempts to tell the story of other survivors via your HUD. I like what they did in the game since it doesn’t give you an out-of-body experience and maintains that feeling that, even while you’re watching the story develop, you are still in the shoes (or in the head) of the protagonist. The pacing is, I should say just right since it gives you a break from the heart-pounding encounters with hostile alien life. I agree that it still is skewed towards the experience department but story-wise? It might have the best storyline for a PSVR game right now – even rivaling the short but sweet Batman VR.
Gian: I was very optimistic with the technology and experience they built into Farpoint using Playstation VR. Overall, the features they put up in this game are fantastic in a lot of aspects, although I felt it more of like a technical demo in the guise of a retail title game.
Allan: As a fan of the FPS genre, I can’t help but notice the relatively slower movement which I think is intentional to ease in the player experience. There’s no bobbing up or down when running though you hear every footstep made. All of the alien hostiles attack from the front, again made intentional. Hostiles that lunge at you but miss don’t attack from behind. Instead they relocate to your front. It’s easy picking and I’d wish they’d stay behind me and let me do a 180. I sometimes catch myself doing a 180 turn but it’s ill-advised given the cable attachment to the VR headset. You wouldn’t want to tug that baby too much. As for movement, physically crouching makes your character to crouch in-game too. Taking cover and leaning to one side is also accurately tracked and so is blind-firing behind a wall.
The assortment of guns have the usual fare of assault rifle, shotgun, sniper and plasma. Rocket launchers and grenade launchers are attachments. There’s no hand-grenade tossing here since, Intentional again since it’ll feel like a “whose arm is that?” moment when both your arms are physically holding the Aim Controller. It’s guns galore but as an FPS fan, I wished there would be some special kills when you get up-close. I would have loved a bayonet-type of attachment or even a chainsaw for melee type kills.
Allan: As a VR game, Farpoint doesn’t push graphical fidelity to new heights. The textures are a bit blocky and not as refined as Batman VR. It reminds me more like No Man’s Sky which is not bad by itself, but given the detail that VR can push, it somehow underwhelms. Though the graphics isn’t as photo-realistic as one would expect, the experience is still as immersive. Looking up the sky, one can be wowed by the view of a planet in mid-implosion. Space dust and bioluminescent alien life abound and it’s in these moments, Farpoint almost makes you feel you’re in another world.
Gian: I would like to believe that Farpoint’s game graphics are internally rendering at lower resolution, and upscaled for the PSVR. They aren’t bad, to be honest – but having a sharper and better rendered image on the head-mounted hub would have enhanced the experience further. This is an easily forgivable aspect of the game, as it isn’t technically its unique selling proposition.
PSVR Aim Controller
Gian: It’s a souped up version of the move controllers lumped into one piece of shooting device. While it does not look sexy by my standards, it does the job as a controller. It does not feel too natural, but definitely intuitive to use. The inclusion of joystick and directional pads are excellent to control the character on Farpoint.Being the first PSVR Aim Controller-compatible game, it excellently made use of the controller pretty well albeit a little too tasky to tasky to set up and get used to.
Allan: The PSVR Aim Controller is the star of the show. It’s the reason why one would buy Farpoint. The Aim Controller itself isn’t a looker but it doesn’t matter. In game, it’s your assault rifle or shotgun or pulse rifle. Bring it close to your view and you’ll see the detailed markings of your weapon. You’ll forget that you’re holding a toy-balloon shaped gun with a stress ball at the nozzle. The Aim Controller vibrates when fired and all buttons give good feedback. Should all FPS’ be played with an Aim Controller? I doubt it. But the Aim Controller should be standard issue for PSVR shooter games in this generation.
Allan: Yes, it’s worth giving this a separate section since the reason why two of us got this game is for the co-op experience. Sadly, there was a host of problems on pairing with another player that it didn’t really give us a lot of airtime for review. Hosting private games would at random, get another player that I did not intend to connect with. Granted that among Gian and myself, I had the slower connection (a basic DSL connection) it should still have been good enough since we’ve played coop games without the connection problems Farpoint presented. We hope to get a patch on this soon and let us play the co-op VR experience we’ve always wanted.
Allan: Farpoint breaks new ground for the VR home gamer. For those expecting hight-octane, Michael Bay-esque big budget explosions for a shooter, well this isn’t for you. Farpoint is for the patient gamer who doesn’t mind being a castaway in a world unkonwn, armed only with a select handful of range weapons. It’s a calculated attempt by Impulse Gear to introduce all of us PSVR newbies in the world of immersive shooters. It’s too early to tell if it deserves a sequel but I’m glad I bought the game. Do grab yours with the PSVR Aim Controller bundle.
Gian: It is, by far, the best and only game that made use of the the PSVR Aim Controller. The game is a little short by my standard, but it’s a keeper by all means.