By Jeremy Say
You and three friends better buckle up for one heck of a ride, because being dropped on a planet filled with blood thirsty alien bugs is no joke. In a style very reminiscent of Starship Troopers, we were able to experience Virtual Reality Gaming first hand at EXA Outpost in the center of SetiaWalk Mall.
For a quick look at what we experienced at this new Hyper-Reality Family Entertainment Center, check out our short video of our experience down below. Complete, of course, with some silly friends screaming like little girls, *Shazwan Zulkiffli* cough, and just in general having a great time.
While not the cheapest experience at first glance, when you factor other activities like watching a 3D movies, playing laser tag, paintball or other virtual reality outlets, their current buy 1 free 1 promotion is a steal. For RM 65, two people can experience 20 minutes of cooperational first person shooter VR gameplay.
This in-house customized game experience, made by EXA Global for their outposts, is truly a stunning feat. From the start of the ‘mission’, you enter a briefing room to gear up and you really start to feel like a soldier about to jump into another dimension.
Now do be warned, if your vision is really bad, please wear contact lenses. Also do wear comfortable clothes and shoes, as you will be moving a surprising amount while shooting all the baddies. Lastly, I should also warn that if you suffer from motion sickness or vertigo extremely easily, you should be a bit wary of this game. There was one specific section of the game that nicely highlights this and it involves a narrow pathway, while ‘not’ looking down.
So from the briefing room almost fully geared, you will then enter an empty padded space where you and three friends will be able to move around physically as motion trackers keep track of your position in the room and the game world. This means as you walk in real life and aim with your gun, so does your character in game. Just do be careful not to get overzealous and forget you have company. Collisions are possible, but the game pretty accurately showed us on the VR sets where you friends are and I personally had no problems with this.
Now without spoiling too much, in this campaign there will be insectoid aliens flying all around you, there will be facehuggers, flying debris and of course a giant boss to contend with. So do expect a lot screaming as things try to claw your faces off. All I can say is that lucky for you, players have a small variety of interesting weapons from lasers and pulse rifles to flamethrowers.
The only two main complaints about gameplay was the fact there was no melee option and you can’t switch guns as of yet. If there was a melee option or the ability to swap weapons, then I would have went full on Left 4 Dead style with my friends and hunkered down against the waves of enemies and facehuggers to rack up points for bragging rights. Now the only thing left was to resist the urge to dodge roll with a VR backstrap attached.
After what can only be described as a satisfying adrenaline rush for many of us, we cooled down with the VR stations. For paying customers, you get to play around with the Sony Playstation VR with party games and a solo HTC VIVE setup. So whether you and your friends are waiting your turn or need something to cool down from the mission, you will easily clock an hour of playtime that is truly a worthwhile experience at the VR stations.
Now, don’t fret about this being a one off experience. After talking and interviewing Mr. Richard Lee, CEO of EXA Global, we were informed that there is a lot more to come. Do stay tuned for a full interview soon with Mr. Richard Lee’s thoughts on VR and what EXA has in store for us.
-future link to interview-
What we can tell you for now is that there will be more modes likes 3v3 player vs player combat and more campaigns to be released over the following months. While we only experienced the first chapter of a five part campaign, we certainly can’t wait for future releases. My bosses were glad to have tried out VR gaming at EXA Outpost and had this to say:
Scott Ng, Chief Editor @The Level MY
EXA Outpost is an awesome place for a group outings. Definitely the future of social gaming, and cannot wait for more story chapters in the following months. With the future plans for PVP, believe me when I say the Ze will not have a high score the next time, Muhahaha!
Matt Liew, Ceo @The Level MY
Truly the first step in making gaming a social event again.
So if want more information, you can check them out at www.exa-global.com, on Instagram and Facebook @EXAGlobal or of course at EXA Outpost, B-11-1, Block B SetiaWalk, Pusat Bandar Puchong. EXA Global is currently offering a buy 1 free 1 promotion for RM65 is only available on weekdays, and for weekends they have a RM200 for 4 people (comes with free sandwiches and drinks)