With virtual reality headsets making their way into the hands and onto the heads of gamers, different developers are trying various ideas in order to tap into that arena, and create something that fits well in VR. You’ll have games that put you in a story and others that are more fast paced. ShortBreak Studios’ The Collider 2 falls into the latter category. It isn’t the most obvious candidate for VR, but when experienced you’ll see how well it works.
The original The Collider was quite a simple game to understand. You moved through a tunnel at ever increasing speeds while avoiding obstacles. Various theories sprung up about what the player controlled, considering the game was in first person. ShortBreak Studios decided to go with the spaceship theory, which leads to the setting of The Collider 2.
In The Collider 2 you do control a spaceship which is on a mission to destroy an alien mothership that is attacking a planet. The small ships mission is to get inside and neutralise the alien threat. You do this by going through various challenges and attacking bosses. In my preview playthrough I tried time trial mode and boss fights, while using the Oculus Rift.
I felt like a boxer dodging and ducking an opponent’s punches while weaving my head to avoid closing doors, metallic struts jutting into the corridor, and enemy fire. The action is fast paced, though at no point did I experience any discomfort or motion sickness. While in VR mode the majority of The Collider 2 is played using your head, you do need a controller to boost the ship as more obstacles spring up. You’ll also use the controller to navigate menus, select which ship to use, and change the colour scheme.
There is a difference in playing when standing up and sitting down while using VR for The Collider 2. While sitting you are just reliant on moving your head from one point to another, but when standing you need to bend your knees a bit as well while moving your head which made Collider 2 a little more difficult, as it felt like the ship was harder to control in this stance.
While dodging is the main aim of The Collider 2 there are moments when you’ll have to fight enemies. This is done semi-automatically as you’ll move your head to aim at the highlighted targets, and the ship will auto fire once it is lined up to do so. This allows you to concentrate on avoiding the opposing weapon blasts while targeting, and helps keep the action moving at a fast pace.
ShortBreak Studios aim has been to create a game that is accessible to all players, while also introducing its own fast-paced action and movement title to the budding platform. I was a little worried about motion sickness due to the nature of The Collider 2, but it appears that ShortBreak has managed to overcome that issue. While there are a lot of parts of the game I didn’t get to see, such as certain level types, there was a feeling when I left that The Collider 2 could be one of those games that will help ease people into VR.
The Collider 2 will be available for PC, Oculus Rift, and HTC Vive, and it launches on April 19th. The game is also playable without a VR headset.