The PlayStation VR has let me experience many things in the last few months. On my virtual adventures I been flying over Paris in Eagle Flight, exploring microscopic samples in Vev: Viva Ex Vivo and playing pool in a sports bar in Sports Bar VR. Now courtesy of Crytek’s debut PSVR game Robinson: The Journey it’s taking me to Tyson III a visually stunning dinosaur filled planet that is begging to be explored.
You take on the role of a young boy called Robin who, thanks to a crashed spaceship, finds himself stranded and alone on Tyson III. Well I say alone but he actually has two companions, HIGS a floating AI robot from the crashed ship and a T-Rex that you befriend in the opening minutes of the game. This impressive opening sequence begins with you watching the T-Rex, which you name Laika, hatch from an egg and I have to say that it looks fantastically realistic. From this first encounter with a dinosaur Crytek set the visual standards high and it carries on throughout the rest of your journey. It’s the closest we’ll get to a virtual reality version of Jurassic Park on PlayStation.
It’s not all about walking with dinosaurs though there are more pressing matters to deal with. There may be other survivors and HIGS units out there. So you should try to go looking for them whenever possible. There’s also the sustainable lifestyle that you’ve managed to create while stranded to maintain. Thankfully HIGS is on hand to badger you like a robotic mother if he feels that you aren’t pulling your weight. He’ll even let you know if anything, like the shields or turbines, isn’t functioning correctly. When this happens you need to go fix them via some light puzzle solving.
Most of the puzzles in Robinson: The Journey are simple point and click affairs for instance in your camp the hydro machine is blocked so you find the blockage and remove it with your multi-tool. This handheld device looks suspiciously like a Move controller (even though the game is controlled with the DS4) and is a device for every occasion. With it you can lift objects with ease and it is also doubles up as a scanner that helps you to catalogue all the different fauna and wildlife of Tyson III that you’ll come across on your explorations.
This leads me onto the one thing that is a little under whelming in the game, navigation. The game could use a marker system or something onscreen to help guide you. This wouldn’t feel like a problem if you’d just crash-landed on the planet as you’d expect to not know your way around but, as the structures Robin has built and HIGS constant reminders tell you, you’ve been there for some time so in theory you should know where you are going.
Movement is slow and steady so unless you try to finish the game in one session, which will take between 7+ hours depending on how much you explore, you shouldn’t experience any VR nausea or motion sickness.
Robinson: The Journey has 31 trophies, which includes a platinum. If you want to unlock it you’ll need to scan virtually everything you see, find all the other HIGS Units and play with your pet dinosaur as well as pop a few story-related trophies along the way.
Robinson: The Journey looks amazing and feels immersive. It’s without doubt the best-looking PlayStation VR game to date with plenty of moments where you’ll be gazing in awe at what is in front of your eyes. Unfortunately you might be put off by the unforgiving nature of the checkpoints, which will have you retracing your steps numerous times.
NelMaNo Rating – 7/10
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