Creed: Rise To Glory Review (HTC Vive)
For the purposes of transparency, this review was created using a code provided by the company or their respective PR company. The use of a review code does not affect my judgement of the game.
When it comes to VR games as a developer Survios seems to do nothing wrong, with all the games they have released all being given high praise – not only by me but many others. So, when they announced that they were releasing Creed: Rise to Glory, I was very interested to see if they could continue that trend in this boxing simulator. Well it is finally out -the question is what do I think?
Firstly it was great to see that Creed: Rise to Glory came with a campaign and story mode. With the story of Creed’s rise through the boxing league and information about the other fighters coming through the radio in the gym. However, the story is not very well fleshed out and they was some room for improvement – but as with every other Survios game it’s really about that gameplay.
The gameplay is all about boxing simulation, but given that this be Survios it also brings with it the arcade style feeling that we all know and link with their name. However, this is not bad thing as it brings that addicting gameplay we all expect from them their titles as well.
As previously mentioned it comes with a campaign mode and this helps in getting you used to the core mechanics of the gameplay, and what can be done around the gym in free play mode. In campaign you are going to take on seven other boxers, all that come with their own challenges. You are going to be required to learn when to block, dodge and throw your own punches in each fight, as you might leave yourself open for powerful or quick jabs if not. This does not run on the same idea that Knockout League brought previously – this is just a straight up simulation. With the options to move around the ring each fight.
Outside of your blocking, dodging and punching mechanic is the little parts you have to do when low on stamina, stunned or as expected put on the floor. For the stamina it comes in two parts gaining stamina and recharging it, your stamina for the next round all depends on how well you do in the training mini-games, the more the pass the more stamina you have for that next fight. Then after running low on stamina your gloves flash red and you have to stand still and raise your guard until it refills. My only gripe with this is there is no indication on how much you have, until your gloves are glowing and Creed is heavy breathing.
For the other two parts, if you are stunned you have to raise your gloves into the circles in order to return to be focused. If you are knocked down, you zoom out of the ring and you have to use a Sprint Vector-esc arm swing movement to get back into the ring and to your body before you are counted out. These little mechanics bring some extra parts to the game, and to be honest add a little to the immersion of the simulation.
Then you have the free play mode, that brings all the mini-game into the gyms, and as you expect from the mode title you can do what ever you want to do. It just basically brings a boxing gym into your home.
As well as these offline modes, the game also brings into player vs player online multiplayer. So, you can juke it out with strangers and friends alike, and this can easily get competitive. At the point of writing this review (the day after release) there is sometimes issues with the match making, but given the teams previous games online servers being solid I suspect this will be resolved in no time with a patch.
When it comes the visuals of the game, they have gone for a more realistic approach to the player models than they have in previous games – but they still carry the distinctive Survios look. All the characters are well animated and each one has their own look and personality. One thing I really liked was the real-time damage on the characters, so as you landed your punches they are going red and swelling as it’s all happening – this really kept you immersed in the game. For everything out the ring the HTC Vive seemed to have a good depth and detail to the arenas, but the crowd are filled with copy and paste models, however, this does distract you as your focus is ninety-nine percent of the time in the ring.
The use of the audio in the game is also done well, the atmosphere grows as you progress into the bigger arenas, the voice acting is solid. The stand out part being the Rocky music playing as you take on some of the mini-game montages and some of the fights – it really gets your adrenaline going. As aforementioned as your stamina starts to deplete you get the heavy breathing from Creed, as you are stunned and knocked out everything goes all muffled, so all this use of sound adding to the level of immersion in the game.
Given you are playing a boxing simulator I would recommend playing it standing if possible – but the games store page on steam does say it can be played seated. There really isn’t anything to the controls, as you would expect each Motion Tracked controller represents the corresponding hands. You hold them up to block, throw punches with them like you would in real life, and move them into the circles when stunned. The only time you press anything on them is when navigating menus using the trigger, and when walking and getting back to your body when knocked down. In order to walk and get back to the ring you need to hold down the track pad and move your arms in a walking motion. That is it for the controls and this helps keep your attention on the action, and keeps that realistic feeling to the fighting.
Playing through the campaign mode is going to depend on the difficulty you have it on, as the later difficulties could take you some time. Playing it on Normal difficulty took me around a sweat filled hour to get through it. But, the play-time doesn’t stop at the campaign mode the free play mode could easily be used as a daily work out, as playing those can be just or even more tiring than the fights. Then of course if you get a core community together the multiplayer could be a good way to have a laugh with friends. Given this it all depends on how you want to use Creed: Rise to Glory to what you get out of it.
Survios have done it again and brought another different style of game to their portfolio successfully. Creed: Rise to Glory brings a boxing simulator with the often linked arcade style the team to the VR medium. Not only does it bring a short but acceptable campaign and a multiplayer mode, it also brings a boxing gym to your home full of mini-games that can easily be a daily workout. If you want a great boxing simulator or even a workout for your day-to-day life, this should be high on your purchase list.
Also available on Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR
Buy Creed: Rise to Glory on Steam