I fondly remember playing Rez back on the Sega Dreamcast, and to this day I had not tried the VR version of the game. So, when it came to the Oculus Quest I knew it was time to try it out in VR. Now, I have had chance to visit this modern take, what did I think?
Rez tells the vague story of a hacker invading the internet of a future dystopia. With you trying to reawaken an AI that due to overwhelming amount of corrupted information is having an existential crisis.
The game brings with a very simple gameplay loop, putting you in a third-person shooter where you are aiming a cursor on the screen. This allows you to lock onto eight enemies at once, and that is basically it. All you need to do is lock onto your enemies take them out and collect any power-ups they drop.
These power-ups will see you eventually get a smart bomb, and also build up your character into multiple forms – which class as your lives. We would recommend playing through the game and building this as far as you can in one sitting… as having your final form can be important for defeating the last boss.
Playing and completing the game will unlock other modes, however, the only real mode that makes a change to the gameplay is Area X. This mode gives you more freedom of movement and opens the gameplay to something although small still new.
When it comes the presentation the team were clearly influenced by TRON, taken from the wire-frame design, the enemies and the neon visuals. The levels are made up from geometric landscapes and the simplicity of the graphics has made the game still feel different and fresh to this date, as it was back in 2001.
Then the game is still releasing with the great Electronica soundtrack, which for us is still one of our favourites ever in a video game – with Enhances Tetris Effect soundtrack coming close. What they have done with the soundtrack and how it builds as you move through the levels in each of the five stages really creates an enjoyable audio experience. Then add to this sound effects of the game adding hi-hats and snare drums to the pulsing soundtrack and the experience is even more enhanced.
This assault on your visual and audio senses has only been furthered increased by the game being created in VR – and makes Rez even more mesmerising than what it was first playing it on the Dreamcast.
Although this still gives that great feeling, you start to feel the visuals are showing a bit of age, and this is made further noticeable in the Area X mode. This is due the new mode having endless particle effects, compared to the original five stages. This at times leaves you in awe as it is like you are fighting through a firework display. But, this mode is short lived due to the mode being an extremely small experience.
With what Rez Infinite does you can play the game seated, as in most cases the game will turn the level to where you need to be facing – with the only case where you need to look behind you being once of the boss fights. However, the faster paced levels as you go through the five stages, might cause some motion-sickness for a few users.
Control wise the game is kept simple, with you aiming by moving your hand and holding either the A or X button to lock onto your targets – depending on your hand you are aiming with. Keeping it simple and allowing you to enjoy the stages and the marvellous soundtrack.
As with the original gameplay and visual styles, the game has also kept the short length to go with it. With the five stages taking around two-hours to complete. However, the multiple game modes are ones you can keep going back to, given the design and the soundtrack… as it did nearly twenty-years ago. So, the fun and enjoyment of the game lasts a lot longer than those two-hours.
For the purposes of transparency, this review was created using a sample provided by the company or their respective PR company. The use of a press sample does not affect my judgement of the product.