Grab your headset, the connector box and the ten thousand cables you’ll need to hook it all up, because it’s time for another PSVR game! Yes, the little headset that could just refuses to die. Game after game keeps coming out for this thing. VR might not be the must-have wave of the future that it was hyped up to be, but the way that VR games continue to see the light of day suggest that it might remain in its own little niche for just a bit longer instead of fading out. This time we’ve got another take on real-time strategy in VR with League of War: VR Arena.
This is a PSVR game, so simple concepts executed using the new-ish hardware as a gimmick are the order of the day. In this case, you and your opponent stand at opposite sides of a virtual table and send units at one another, hoping to blow apart your foe’s base. Units are produced on your side of the table where you’ll “pick them up” with the (required) PS Move controllers and point them on their way; this is your sole interaction with your units,and once they’re on their way you can’t change their orders. As they encounter enemy units they’ll engage in combat, with certain units having the advantage against others, so victory becomes a matter of learning what to deploy against what, along with figuring out the best time to perform your deployments.
It’s a neat, if uncomplicated, idea and it certainly looks great in VR. Being able to crane over the table and lean in to see what’s going on is both immersive and a little bit nauseating. As with most VR games, this is clearly where most of the development focus was placed – it certainly wasn’t placed on the comically bad voice acting. There’s no online multiplayer and the single-player opponents aren’t exactly the next coming of Patton, so unless you’ve got someone to play with locally, League of War: VR Arena is going to wear out its welcome fairly quickly.
As usual when it comes to PSVR releases, League of War: VR Arena is all about “wow! I’m playing a video game in VR!” as opposed to “wow! what a great video game that happens to be in VR!” This is such a common trope with these things that I can’t even really dock the game for it – in fact, the low asking price of $20 compared to other, more expensive titles that offer even less for your money means this is an easy recommendation if the concept sounds at all appealing. This isn’t going to become the next StarCraft or anything like that, but in the world of just-barely-more-than-tech-demo VR games, League of War: VR Arena offers enough to not feel quite like a rip-off.