As a fan of horror and sci-fi, I grew up watching things like Lawnmower Man, Brainscan, and Existenz. So it should be no shock that VR gaming has always interested me. Heck, years ago I picked up a Gear VR when I realized my phone was compatible. And later, when I was very into PC gaming, I even had an Oculus Rift set up. So I'm no stranger to VR. So I pretty much had to get Nintendo's VR Labo kit. I mean, it was a cheap VR kit. Made by Nintendo. I had to.
On launch my wife and I had fun building the cardboard kit and messing around with the included Toy-Con cart. But to be honest, it's nothing more than a bunch of glorified tech demos. It was neat but nothing to really write home about. If anything I just thought to myself, "okay, Nintendo did it. They brought VR gaming to the best console of the generation. Let's see what they do next."
Unfortunately, a year's gone by now and they've done very little. So I don't know. I'm not expecting much now.
But one thing has hung in the back of my mind - you can now play Zelda: Breath Of The Wild in VR. And I really wanted to do that.
BOTW is one of the greatest games every made. And playing it in VR was super appealing. So I went ahead and ordered a third party VR headset that actually straps the Switch to your face so you can use a Pro Controller and fired it up this week.
The experience was impressive. BOTW is a game I'll slowly play forever. And I told my wife I was going to play around with the headset for a bit while she took our daughter outside one afternoon. Messing around turned into and hour, and then I dived back in when the baby went to bed. I ended up doing lots of exploring, discovering two more shrines and opening up more of the map.
The draw distance seems poorer in VR mode. And that is what it is given the shortcomings of the hardware. But it was always impressive. A wolf attacked me out of the blue at one point and I literally jumped. It's that immersive.
The only real drawback here was that I did experience some motion sickness, something I've only rarely encountered in VR in the past. I'm not sure if this is chalked up to low resolution or the sort of cheap shakiness of the aftermarket headset or what. But it kind of put a damper on things.
But still. Zelda. In VR. I'd like to continue playing in this fashion in the future when I can.