Sunday, January 13, 2019

I could see for miles and miles

I was not lying when I said that Mega Man 11 was hard but it is an authentic, well worn difficulty that has had its edges rounded off. Getting all the way through a level and through the boss in two lives is still nigh impossible on the first attempt. That attempt nets more than just information: accumulated bolts allow the player to purchase extra lives, energy tanks and power ups.

It's still Mega Man, it's just a modern Mega Man, and it makes Mighty Number 9 look even worse for getting almost everything wrong.

Much to my surprise I actually finished this one, something I had not managed to do with Mega Mans 9 and 10. It would not have been possible without the judicious use of armor power ups and, admittedly, and easier than expected final form of Dr. Wily. The game gave me a break when it was not expected, as if it knew that I was at my limit.

...

Beat Saber is is PSVR's killer app for me. I have not been back to it lately, as I am waiting for more songs, but it is the reason that the device was purchased in the first place. There was nothing else that I really wanted to play. After investigating the demo disc I did come up with one: Moss.

Moss didn't need to be a PSVR game. It could have been a perfectly average third person, physics based platformer whose hook was an impeccably animated, almost painfully cute mouse protagonist. I am thankful that it did more than this as perfectly average platformers grow on trees and Moss, save for one major misstep, is something quite special.

Much like Pyre, the player is an actual character in the game. Other character speak directly to the play, coincidentally call 'the reader.' but thank to the game being in VR the player is literally in the game. The first time I looked down into a pool of water and saw my own reflection (at least the reflection of my avatar looking back at me) it was almost magic.

As the reader I was looming over the world of Moss, a benevolent specter charged with guiding the hero mouse through her adventures. It works most of the time: specific items in the environment are moved by physically reaching out with the controller and pulling them. The same can be done to enemies, but this is where it break down. It is quite finnicky getting enemies into the right place, doubly so when you have to control the mouse at the same time. Not game breaking by any means, just something that needs to be polished up for the sequel.

And that, unfortunately,  is the game's big problem: it's just too damn short. I knocked it out in about two and a half hours. I had seen all there was to see and Moss thanked me by saying that Moss chapter 1 was done and that there was more to accomplish...

...just not in this game.

I wanted more. I wanted more of the mouse communicating in sign language, of her reaching out for a high five and a difficult puzzle had been solved.

Oh well, something PSVR related to look forward to, I suppose.

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