If there’s one genre that you can always rely on no matter what Console or PC you play on and that’s the first-person shooters. These range from the million dollar blockbusters like the battlefield and call of duty franchises to the child friendly cheap and cheerful duck hunt or Super Mario shooter 2. With the arrival of PSVR most gamers including myself thought the new tech would be inundated with FPS but luckily they have been limited to a minority, the most prevalent and impressive so far must be Farpoint and Until Dawn Rush of Blood. So why Activision and Dice secretly work away on their next instalments with VR hopefully forefront in their minds we receive a new FPS on VR from Danish developer Bolverk games and that new title is called Dick Wilde.
Like many VR games so far Dick Wilde obviously has an age group in mind and plays to all the strengths expected within it, presentation is a bright, colourful cell shaded comic take on the shoot’em ups of old and playing it reminds me a little of the arcade shooters from my childhood or watching old Batman cartoons because if it’s comic book style of presentation.
Placed on a stationary boat (maybe strategically for minimal movement) you must take on wave after wave of crocodiles, sharks, electric eels, piranha, jumping fish and low flying seagulls. Both the seagulls and flying fish send projectiles your way to hinder your sight but these can be avoided with a well-timed duck, and I do recommend trying too as your view soon becomes very dirty very quickly leaving you open to the various man-eating animals/mammals coming your way from every direction.
Each wave increases in its difficulty until the last wave (no.10) being the final boss, I personally found beating it on Normal was a seriously difficult challenge and an achievement, it also takes its toll on your arms too, I had to physically rest them before I took on the next level.
You have a good selection of weapons on offer from the start include a shotgun, Pistol, Harpoon, nail gun and grenade launcher all with a secondary fire option for when things get frantic, some are just a simple laser light for accuracy but some hold serious wave changing power including a saw blade that skims the surface killing anything in its path.
Also after each successful wave you are gifted 4 assist options including Health top ups, mines and various gun/rocket turret options. These turrets with their pin point accuracy can help you when the wave intensifies to almost impossible levels but unfortunately the price to pay for this assistance is limited ammo, the turrets soon run out leaving you all alone to fend off what feels like hundreds of approaching enemies.
The three environments offered – Lagoon, Swamp and Ice all come with three levels of difficulty – Normal, Hard-core or Insane, personally I haven’t even attempted the last two as I find Normal can be challenging enough for me but the whole experience is delivered and presented well with no issue with motion sickness (probably because of the lack of motion).
Sound however is certainly not as polished as the graphical presentation, along with the standard gun effects you have some pre-recorded jokes and comments delivered in a hillbilly style southern drool, these are all scripted and soon become familiar and unfunny. However, the VR aspect of Dick Wilde is faultless, motion tracking of the move or aim controllers is spot on every time giving you a real sense of holding and shooting your selected gun.
Leader boards are the only online option with the standard try to top the world rankings effort but there is a four-player party mode included which doesn’t need any explanation, so along with the solo mode Dick Wilde is a fun old school wave shooter, add to that move support and the ability to use the new VR aim controller Gun also ramps up the VR experience.
Overall it’s a fun game which makes good use of VR and its peripherals but obviously wont compare with what’s on the horizon for VR FPS and the only two things I can criticise Dick Wilde for are the difficulty level – it’s just too hard from the start and because of this becomes annoying and frustrating rather quickly, and in my honest opinion the price is a little on the steep side too, especially for the type of game it is, but in Dick Wilde’s defence most VR titles seem to be a mismatch of prices. Dick Wilde is a fun frustrating challenging shooter and complements PSVR but again because of the price I feel it will be left until a substantial price drop is implemented.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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