November 03, 2014

NewRetroArcade - The most immersive experience so far - video review

I have just played NewRetroArcade by Digital Cybercherries. First - if you haven't got it already - head over to this link and download it.

I have played many demos and games on the oculus rift. But this one utterly utterly blew me away. Without a doubt this was the most immersive experience I have had on the rift so far. Yes I have stepped out of the car in Assetto Corsa, yes I have flown into the depths of space. This beats them all. The demo has been developed using the unreal engine, this engine has been hit of miss for me with other demos, but clearly - done right - it is an amazing VR engine. My system is fairly powerful (i7 4970k, r9 270X) but struggles with some more graphically hungry games, I maintained a steady 75FPS throughout.

New retro arcade is splendidly constructed 1980's arcade room, With neon black lights illuminating a hideous glowing carpet, posters on the wall of movies of the day and objects scattered around the room you can interact with. In the arcade are rows of cabinets 90% of which you can walk up to and start playing. It's not clean which just adds to the sense of reality, the posters undulate, the cabs have scratches and dinks, the gameboy on the table (which you can play) is scuffed and battered. It's fantastic.

The VR front end clearly conceals a sophisticated emulator backend which seamlessly downloads the roms from a remote site and starts playing them as you approach. The controls move as you move the controls in your hand, the sound of live 80's music channels streams from a boombox on the desk, you can almost smell the cigarette smoke.

As well as a fully stocked arcade (which made me giggle like a school girl) there is also a bowling alley, basketball game and dart board ALL of which you can interact with and will keep score. Scattered around the room are C90 tape cassettes (kids google it) which you can pop in the boom box and listen to.

The overall experience is flawless. I cannot praise this highly enough, download it today.

BIG THANKS to the devs!
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