The VR world just got a major bit of news with the announcement of a Medal of Honor VR game from the makers of Apex Legends, plus Star Wars, Facebook VR and more.
If you’ve been patiently anticipating the day that virtual reality video games like those seen in the hit 2018 movie Ready Player One, then this is the story of the year for you. The annual Oculus Connect conference event in which the Facebook-owned VR company announces its biggest achievements has been a major thing this year.
First of all, there was the announcement of a Facebook VR world where you can hang out with your buddies, fight in old planes, and paint pictures of stuff, plus built your own VR world to explore – more on that later.
The really juicy bit was the announcement of two epic VR games: Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond, and Star Wars: Vader Immortal 2. These two games are looking to be the titles that VR needs to push it above being little more than a sci-fi gimmick.
New realm of VR
The announcement of these two epic new VR games is likely to draw a lot of attention to the Oculus headset and the potential of VR in general. Anyone who has been following developments in tech already knows that VR has the potential to be a big deal – but the technology has been moving pretty slowly in the field of entertainment.
While there have been major breakthroughs in training, conferencing, and some light entertainment and gaming releases, nothing major has come through that has really captured the eyes of the gaming community at large.
These new games will be the ones that will change that trend and bring VR into the center stage. This, in-turn, will encourage more developers to create new games for the platform and draw in more users to play them. 2020 is set to be the biggest year for the platform yet.
So, is all this excitement really worth its weight? Let’s have a look.
Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond
Probably the biggest game announced on VR to date, this new addition to the now-ancient Medal of Honor franchise is being developed by Apex Legends developers Respawn. People have known that Respawn was developing something on VR for some time now, but no one expected it to be such a high-profile title.
The game sees you play as the French Resistance against Nazi occupation during the Second World War, and appears to include the Allied invasion of Normandy and the subsequent liberation of France as well. The graphics aren’t what you’d expect to see on a console like the PS4 or Xbox One, but they’re certainly towards good nonetheless. The gameplay looks high action and very tense, with reloading taking up about as much of your time as shooting – true to the mechanics of WWII-era firearms.
Players will fight through French villages, operate tanks, catch grenades and lob them back at their throwers, and try to stay alive against all odds while fighting the world’s most ferocious military force in that battle of our time. It looks like this is going to be the game that throws VR onto the world-stage.
Vader Immortal: Episode II
Another major title announced at Oculus Connect 6 was Vader Immortal: Episode II, from the Star Wars franchise. The game will see you play as an apprentice of Darth Vader, learning the ways of the force and the power of the Sith.
As you become more powerful, you’ll be tested in more extreme circumstances, using the power of the force and your light saber skills to defeat your opponents and become a mighty apprentice serving the Empire.
The game is the sword to Medal of Honor’s gun and will likely be one of the biggest titles of the year. The mechanics of the gameplay will couple with the Oculus’ ability to follow your hands and do away with the need for a controller. This will give you much more ability to perform different moves and will make the gameplay a lot more exciting.
You’ll be throwing droids at each other, dodging the teeth of giant monsters, and confronting enemies in preparation for fighting against the Rebellion. Top marks on this one so far.
This next one is something different and it comes from Facebook Inc. themselves. Facebook Horizon is a VR world that turns social media on its head and allows you to hang out with your buddies in a full on VR gaming universe.
You’ll create your own avatar and then meet up with your friends in the Horizon world and play games, paint pictures, engage in dogfights in WWII fighter planes, and explore a vast world. Facebook have already announced that they will be filling the world with creation tools so that you can build to your heart’s content.
Taking a leaf out of the Minecraft book and seeing the true potential of VR technology, Facebook is jumping into the mix to unleash their ambitions for virtual reality. The company aims to be at the center of VR development, and Facebook Horizon is just the beginning of what they will do with the Oculus headset.
The three announcements mentioned above are only the beginning of the VR revolution. This technology has the potential to completely remake the world of gaming, social media, and entertainment, and finally the wheels are beginning to turn.
As more major games and apps are developed for the Oculus headset and other VR platforms, more and more people will invest in them, leading more developers to turn to the platform. This will kick start the VR revolution that the tech community has long been predicting.
It appears that 2020 is going to be the biggest year yet for VR, with each following year bring ever-bigger developments.