Sunday, October 25, 2015

Just Saved Some Money

I was a little uncertain about buying the Oculus Rift when the new virtual reality device hits the market early next year. So one of the reasons for coming out to EVE Vegas was to try out Valkyrie and whether I can even play the game.

I am horrible at two types of games, first person shooters and flight simulators. I knew that Valkyrie is a combat flight simulator, but I figured that since the scenario at EVE Vegas consisted of shooting NPCs that I couldn't do too badly, right? Wrong.

I played a version of Valkyrie two years ago at Fanfest, so I had some clue about the experience. The first surprise was that the version of the Oculus Rift I used yesterday felt much clunkier than what I remembered. I don't think I could put it on unassisted, which would really make me not want to buy one.

The next was the controls. An Xbox One controller? I knew I was in trouble, but the first time I played I could at least fly around. Given that the scenario was the one shown in the trailer at Fanfest, that was enough for me even if I didn't succeed in shooting anything.

Needless to say, I didn't succeed in coming close to shooting anything. I experimented with trying to lock a target for my missiles, but gave that up fairly quickly when I couldn't figure out how to do so. So from then on, I just concentrated on trying to steer my ship. I failed miserably at that as well. The controls were extremely sensitive and my view bounced around very rapidly. As for trying to control my speed, I gave that up as a lost cause because ... Xbox One controller. I had too many buttons to try to remember that the button even existed much less where the button was on the pad (which I couldn't see).

When my ship finally blew up, CCP Leeloo was present to ask me questions. She pointed out that I needed to move my head around to lock things.  I just wanted to leave, so I didn't tell her the only targeting reticle I saw was for the guns and I never saw anything for the missiles. Also, I didn't really care about the advice about moving my head around because I couldn't even get my ship pointed where I wanted to go.

Overall, a much more frustrating experience than the one I had at Fanfest 2014. But don't take this post as advice not to get an Oculus Rift. The gear is an amazing technology. What I will say is that the tech will not make you like flight simulators if you don't like them in the first place. So for me, I won't rush out and pick up a unit when they come out next year.

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