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Every week with my PlayStation VR brings along a brand new experience. While I’ve shot some pool in Sports Bar VR, made my way out of prison using nothing by my head in Headmaster and scored plenty of touchdowns in RIGS my next venture would prove less competitive and a little more relaxing.
Puzzle games are a genre I never really considered when it comes to virtual reality if I’m honest. The general idea of being more immersed in a puzzle environment hardly the most exciting prospect especially when compared with the potential of riding giant mechs or riding along on a terrifying rollercoaster. This opinion quickly changed however after just a few minutes toying with the game’s first puzzle.
The game’s single player is split into ten zones, each offering a handful of different puzzle types. You’ll come across your stacking-style stages where you’ll either need to stack different shaped blocks as high as possible without them falling, stack as many blocks as you can on a small platform or attempt to stack them as low as possible so a passing limbo bar doesn’t knock any strays off.
Then you have tasks that take a rather different route. One such example sees you redirecting beams of light using mirrors so they pass through checkpoints and reach the end while another placing explosive mines on a large structure of blocks in the hope of sending it toppling over and scoring major points. Throw in a couple of smaller puzzles that only have one way to achieve success whether it be reaching a height or recreating an image with a group of blocks and you have Tumble summed up.
The further your progress the more tricky things become. While building platforms start off as big flat surfaces, they soon start to slope and spin while even later stages start to mess around with the game’s gravity.
Stages offer bronze, silver and gold medals based on performance with achieving the latter than unlocking more objective based medals to complete. Time trials focus purely on speed, a difficult task especially when you also need to make sure your stacks are sturdy at the same time. Target meanwhile requires you to build your stack of blocks in such a way that it reaches a certain area perhaps out to the right or left. Math and Sequence tasks although rarer in appearance involve placing blocks in a particular way that it either creates an image or correct equation. Even after managing the difficult task of reaching gold in the stages these extra tasks offer another challenge to the player and one that will keep you coming back to replay past stages.
Tumble VR is definitely one of the cheaper games when it comes to PlayStation VR at just £7.99. I know what you’re thinking; a lower price point surely leads to yet another far too short virtual reality experience that’s over before it starts. Surprisingly that isn’t the case here. With roughly around a hundred different puzzles I found myself sinking easily fifteen hours and that’s with a whole bunch of extra challenges still left to topple.
The standard DualShock controller uses the motion control to pick up and place blocks down. It works well enough but should you have a spare Move controller spare I’d highly recommend this instead. Moving blocks around using this pointer feels far more natural and works well. The only issue I had sometimes with all the motion control was when flicking left or right or up and down to rotate a block. This could often be a little finicky.
As you progress through the game’s main campaign you’ll soon unlock multiplayer stages. These missions task the VR headset wearer to stack blocks to a certain height while the other player using a standard controller uses an assortment of tools to prevent them from doing so. Fans and lasers when placed in the right place can prove a nightmare making for some often funny back and forth situations between players. While the stage selection here is slim, it’s a cool extra and refreshing to see a multiplayer feature in a VR game.
So how is the VR? Surprisingly impressive. While physically being in the stylish looking room, grabbing blocks and moving them around as if with your own hands is certainly an impressive feeling it is also extremely helpful in judging depth and building your towers. It offers accuracy that a normal television just wouldn’t be able to offer.
Tumble VR is a solid puzzler that feels challenging, rewarding and very natural when using the PlayStation Move controller. With plenty of content for single players and a pretty silly but fun multiplayer option, Tumble VR is a perfect purchase for new adopters of the VR headset and an easy recommendation especially at its low price.
- Simple idea executed well
- Plenty of content
- Multiplayer is silly fun
- Perhaps not the most exciting use of VR
- Multiplayer feels like it has more potential
- Uses same content from original