Developer / Publisher – Jason Kato / anicecompamy FUKUOKA
Price – US $4.99 / EU €4.99 / UK £3.99
Release Date – March 9th, 2018
Input – Oculus Touch Controllers
Play Area – Sitting, Standing
Store – Oculus
Reviewed on – Oculus Rift
Escape Room/Puzzle games will always be a mainstay for VR, no other gaming medium can accurately cause the tension and bewilderment that comes with solving puzzles in VR. Despite this, escape room games can easily fail. Without enough context clues, the player is left in the dark as to what the possibilities in the world are, so finding the puzzles themselves can be tricky and finding the ANSWERS to the puzzles can be a nightmare. Luckily Thievery is one of the more fun escape room games I have ever played.
The player starts out at the entrance to a remote location, a home to the billionaire Hans Bitter. It seems Hans has stolen a diamond, and it’s up to you to not only find that, but pilfer whatever else of value you find hidden throughout the house and escape with it. Objects around the home can be picked up and examined, using the Touch Controllers, and small clues are left around the building guiding you throughout the relatively short game, though this i typical in Escape Room puzzlers. It is up to you to solve the puzzles and avoid Hans Bitter’s pet tiger to get to the diamond and get the heck out of there!
Puzzles range from simply finding objects to figuring out how to move certain object to unlock the next ‘something’ which leads to the next puzzle. Without spoiling any of the puzzles, while some are definitely on the easy side of things, the ones that offer more challenge had me thouroughly engrossed in the game and kept me very entertained. Players can also collect small treasures that are strewn around the house to gain extra points, which adds some replayability after you have figured out the puzzle solutions.
Graphically, Thievery is nothing to write home about, but there was something about the design and simplicity of the rooms that added to the aesthetic. It was fun to pretend I was a special agent trying to recovery a diamond, and although not Crysis level graphics, I don’t think it’s a reason to not buy the experience. Textures and lighting do their job at making the house feel both authentic and lived in, and even the outdoor areas look pretty good all things considered. The music is fitting for the setting but is fairly minimalist as to not be too distracting from the puzzles.
Overall, Thievery is a welcome addition to the escape room genre and is worth playing if you are a fan of puzzle based games. If you aren’t a fan of the genre, I’m not sure there is much here for you, and there are more accessible escape room games that are better intros to these game types. I do have to say it was created by one person, and for that I have to give credit. You can tell some real work went in to making Thievery, and I’d love to see more from him. With a fun spy theme, Thievery is a solid escape room puzzler.
What Would I Pay? The game retails for $4.99 which feels fair. The game doesn’t have tons of replayability, but for what it offers, you could get a good few hours out of it, and if you are an escape room enthusiast you are probably itching for a new game to play.
Jason Kato provided The VR Grid with a review code for this game and, regardless of this review, we thank him for that.