Pixel Gear is one of the early PSVR titles to cash in on the human desire to shoot things in a virtual world. But foregoing the issue of navigating in VR in a first-person view (as the vomit-inducing RIGs tries), Pixel Gear has you at more of a stationary or on-rails position with using the controller (or preferably Move controller) to turn and shoot.
You’re mostly up against hordes of monsters – but this isn’t a horror game, it’s closer to Point Blank than Until Dawn in its visual style. You’ll start off with a handgun but by using coins you can upgrade to sniper rifles, machine guns or rocket launchers. The coins are won by shooting ghosts that carry them and although there is some good firepower on offer, the handgun by far feels the most fun to use.
Visually it feels fairly close to Minecraft in that grass mounds are built out of cubes and enemies have a certain squareness to them. The graphics are nice and colourful but sadly when the enemies are in the distance, the blurriness of the PSVR kit really shows and it’s a shame that the hardware limits some of this enjoyment. Quickly turning to cover your back is fun, however assuming you don’t turn too fast as to get sick. Thankfully I managed to stay away from any major bouts of illness.
The length of the game is questionable. There are three worlds, and you’ll whizz through it all in about two and a half hours. There are a couple of extra difficulty levels which aid replayability a bit but faster enemies can only hold your interest for so long. It just doesn’t really feel like there’s enough here – there are some cool bits, like holding the Move controller to your face to zoom in on your sniper scope is a neat trick, but there aren’t enough of these moments.
The challenge is further limited by the trophy set. On my first play-through, we managed to net around half of the trophies on offer and I’ve no doubt that a couple more goes will finish it off. Which begs the question – why get Pixel Gear? Well, given the warnings about young children playing VR it’s going to be hard to get teens interested in this as this won’t do much to satiate their Call of Duty bloodlust. Perhaps then it’s another cheap buy to get the most enjoyment out of the early days of the system – and with that, it does a reasonable job but there are better games out there to demo the new hardware to your mates.
Reviewed on PSVR