A GEARVR NEWS REVIEW
Dude! Don’t be a spacehole! Well, not unless you’re a MEGA one. I just completed MEGA SPACEHOLE by developers Furious Union, a game lasting about 75 minutes. This intense gaze-shooting action was well paced (but not well spaced) across 30 particle-filled levels of sheer fun. I really enjoyed it, although this title has some minor flaws, like being too short for one. But I guess it really was good enough lengthwise for what’s offered here.
For another thing, there is no back story … nor any story at all. You just begin slicing and dicing … whatever those things are … and learn the rules as you go. You’re presented with a Start screen and 29 more locked levels to go before you can become a real “spacehole.”
The levels and Stages at the start look all laid out like some kind of Chemistry Chart of elements. It has a micro-biology feel to it, which is kind of cool. The goal is to stay alive by destroying your attackers which I assume are micro-bots of some kind. These might be such things as nano-technological devices a 1000 times smaller than a red-blood cell.
You must slice and dice your way through 30 levels of increasingly-harder complexity (and coolness) as you go. There are 6 Stages broken up into groups of colors, with 5 levels per Stage. Red is the Final Stage, complex and chaotic. I don’t think Android phones could push this kind of particle insanity … as I’ve never seen it like THIS before now.
At each new Stage, the game throws in one new complex rule and one or two new changes to the previous dynamics. The game play is fun but never gets too deep, and the challenge level of this game is not ultra hard or anything. One level took me 6 times to beat it, but that’s the most times any level took me to beat. It was a lot of fun, though.
The game does not require a controller, only a few Track-pad taps to get started. But that’s the first issue here, the game requires you to tap in order to choose the level you wish to play and then also tap “Start” after that. I see no reason for the additional “Start” tap, because the natural reaction here is to tap the level you wish to play and drop your arm. Then instead of beginning that stage like you expect, you once again have to lift it back up to tap Start again. You do this each and every time for all 30 levels.
It becomes a nuisance and I feel the 2nd tap is not needed. Because if we’re selecting a level to play, it means we’re all ready to go. We click that, the level should just begin already. With a minor repair here, this game will flow more readily. We’re ready already.
This game lacks the proper 3D-Depth for a good VR game, sadly. I want to hope that Furious Union (what, are they a married couple or something?) would research how OZWE added their now-famous 3D Settings in Options to Anshar Wars 2. Because this game could really use some 3D-Depth features like that.
The objects here look way too big (the now familiar problem with all new VR games still coming out even now), which is a big problem in the lore of this game itself. These 2D-Depth-looking visuals not only break immersion physically, but ideologically.
I mean, you are some kind of laser-surgeon cutting a swathe through a human body destroying alien invaders here. So you are supposed to feel small; everything is supposed to feel tiny. Increasing the 3D-Depth effects would shrink the world down and give you the illusion of being minuscule. This kind of scale, if any title should have it, should be the one.
This game feels like it is about micro-biological things that are very small (although there’s no story, so how would you know for sure?), and the sense of scale is way wrong here. It was the particle effects that kept me in this game, continuing to play it despite lacking my beloved stereoscopy. Because these particle are literally INSANE! Awesome.
There are so many things exploding and flying around and you have to be able to track them all. It’s wonderful in this sense, there’s no other game like it. You are smothered in particle explosions and flying debris. That’s a real selling point here. So if the 3D-Depth were added back in here, this game could become much more memorable.
- Give the game an introduction, even if it’s just a few images with a voice over. Explain that … while wandering out in space near what’s called a “SpaceHole” anomaly, an astronaut was infected with alien micro-robotic machines (or just “nanites” from Star Trek) that are seeking to turn his flesh into carbon-fiber so he can be transformed into a world-destroying Robot Lord. Earth is its first pit stop. Explain how we are a micro-robotics doctor who is enlisted by NASA to be shrunk down and injected into the astronaut’s blood to try and save him by laser-cutting the intruding foreign bodies. Explain that the word “MEGA” is NASA’s internal (and purposefully ironic) Code Name for its Top-Secret “shrinking things” project. (wink)
- Now show some images …. 1) The space anomaly or “Spacehole” … 2) Us being shrunk down in a Machine. 3) the astronaut with a syringe already in his neck, injecting us. 4) Us entering the body. 5) Enter Default Load-In screen as usual.
- Add a 3D-Depth Upgrade to your rendering pipeline. Let the 3D-Depth be so great that the entire game’s scale gets changed to one of a much more micro size. Good examples of this effect are in VR Jams games “Small” … and “Polo” … or the regular game “Viral” if you need some research ideas.
Furious Union has given Mega SpaceHole all the earmarks of a great game that is fun, not too hard (the way I like my cheese), addictive, and mind-blowing in its particle effects. With a bit more back story as described, and a major overhaul on how the 3D-Depth engine renders, this title would be quite an awesome experience for VR gamers. Right now, it’s a great game for Android gamers in a 360-degree space that is more compelling for its effect wizardry than for its VR attributes. But it’s worth checking out if you have an hour or two free and need to seriously dice something up … with your face. (Never thought I’d hear that one coming out of … MY face … hahaha.)
NOTE: After returning from winning this game to the Menu Screen, the game was playing a really cool rap song with no lyrics and my brain suddenly heard the coolest lyrics for this game and it made me think of Dan Bull, the awesome YouTube Gaming Rapper.
I think I literally just channeled Dan Bull, even though he’s still alive… I hope Dan sees this next bit somehow, because he writes cool raps about video games and I think it would be awesome if he did one about Mega SpaceHoles now that I’ve already got it started here … Plus why not start reviewing VR games ahead of the curve there, Mr. Bull? Your standard gaming raps are already awesome, so please don’t fall behind the times…. 2016 is the Year of VR. FINISH MY SONG! (wink)
SO … if not Dan Bull, anyone out there who sees this and wants to finish the song can. Then upload it to YouTube for us! It must feature the music from Mega SpaceHoles… here goes:
You have a tight grip of the gamepad, you’d best let go,
Cause there’s no …such thing … here in “Mega Spacehole!”
This game uses your face … to slice the space to lay waste
and decimate these micro-bots with haste….
Haha, with the rap-music backing from MEGA SPACEHOLE playing, you’ll be able to feel what I’m talking about there. A cool beginning… but I’m no Dan Bull. So … would the real Dan Bull please stand up and finish this song for me? … Douglby!
*With more 3D Depth added into this title, its score goes up to 7.5/10 !