Publisher – Uber Entertainment
Price – US $19.99 / EU €19.99 / UK £15.49 / AU $28.95
Release date – October 13th, 2016
Move Support – Yes
Pro Patch – No
Digital only – Yes
Reviewed on – Standard PS4
I came to this late, like really late and I gotta say, I messed up. Wayward Sky is a wonder of a game that I wish I got to sooner. A point a click adventure that may not be the most challenging game you have ever played, but a quaint story and great use of scale make this one of the better, unique experiences for the PSVR.
You play and control a girl named Bess who loses her father after crash landing on a mysterious, floating city. There are 2 modes of play here, the pointing and clicking to navigate the maps and the first person sections which utilize both move controllers (though really only 1 is needed) to flip switches and levers or turn wheels and dials to solve the relatively simple puzzles. That’s really it here, but that’s enough. What this gives us is a casual game that is easy to pick up and play with a nice lightly emotional story about familial love, loss and exploration.
The puzzles themselves are simple, to the games detriment. They never get difficult at all, except for the puzzles where you need to flick the right switches to power up doors. I could be a little slow, but I found myself just randomly flicking switches until the doors opened, which worked for me throughout the whole game. Other than that, the rest of the puzzles will take more time than effort which is great for casual gamers, but veterans of the genre will be left wanting. There is also no sense of danger here, and you feel more like you are guiding Bess through these levels as opposed to navigating them yourself. A little more drama or intensity would have gone a long way to immerse you further into the story.
The visuals here kind of blew me away. What Wayward Sky does that few VR games do is establish a sense of scale that had me constantly just looking around just to marvel at the floating city around me. At time you feel like a giant, controlling little puppet-like characters in these massive scaled environments and the next when you are in 1st person mode those same those same stages look even larger, making you(as Bess) feel so small in such a large world it’s almost breathtaking. There is a toony art style here, that looks really crisp and clean and is actually really beautiful at times and fits the narrative quite well. My one issue is the black eyes of the characters, they just looked creepy and hollow and took me out of the experience a bit. But maybe that’s just me.
This whole experience just works. It only took me maybe 3 or 4 hours to wrap this game and that’s kind of perfect. The story is told through in-game events and some cutesy little cardboard puppet show cut scenes in between stages and it plays out very organically. With no combat to speak of (minus some light hose shooting during puzzle sections) this is about exploration and story progression. There are collectables hidden throughout the game that unlock a few different mini-games available on the main menu so there are reasons to come back and play through again. Every new “room” you enter creates an auto save so it’s easy to pick up and play in small doses and come back exactly where you left off.
This is a great little adventure title and, as of this review, the only title like this available for the PSVR and thankfully, it’s good. Flaws aside there are phenomenal visual moments, a good narrative and fun gameplay and if you are into to point and click adventures than this is a must purchase
What would I pay? $20US is great, I’d even be fine with this being a few bucks more. It’s definitely on the easy side of games, but the journey to the end is still fun and fullfiling.