When first seeing the trailer for TOSS! it looked like a bit of mindless fun in VR, that would make you feel like being back on the jungle gyms at school. It’s always fun to see what developers do with virtual reality, and it looks like the team at Agera Games had fun creating this one.
At heart the game is essentially a VR platfomer, where the aim is to get from one end of the course to the other and press the button. However, this is not as easy as it seems, as the level is suspended above the clouds, meaning miss the grab or mis-judge your jump and its bye-bye monkey.
The platforming is also done by flinging yourself around and grabbing the objects and surfaces you can, like a monkey. Where you start to get used to this the more you play it, there is times where this movement system does not feel accurate, which can lead some frustrations – especially if you miss the last rail on a tricky level and having to start again.
In the first world you will be eased in slowly with the level layouts, but this is just preparing you for what is coming up from there on. It does not take long for the levels to start to introduce new obstacles to make navigating the levels harder, these come in the form of trampolines, spiked walls, electrified enemies and more. Over this time you will unlock some new abilities, but these come in near the end and feel like they come a little too late.
Outside of getting to the end of course, each level also throws in three challenges you can complete as well. These are getting to end of the course in a set time, getting to the end of the course using so many grabs and the more chilled collecting all parts of the bananas laid throughout the course. There is no live multiplayer, but you can race against ghosts or friends or anyone on the leaderboard – with the later sometimes being useful to see how they did it so quickly.
As mentioned the levels all take part above the clouds, and the game uses vibrant colours with a simplified design, which makes it clear where you are going, what you can grab and allows it to really pop in the HMD. However, one thing I felt a little let down by was when entering new worlds the backgrounds are all a little too familiar to the others, and its seems like a missed opportunity to not have them suspended above dangerous settings, to go with the newly introduced obstacles.
Audio in the game is kept simple, but it gives you everything the game needs. With light and catchy music being paired with environmental sounds and monkey noises as you throw yourself about the levels.
The game can be played either seated or standing, but with a little warning of making sure you have plenty of room round you for swinging your arms like a crazy monkey. With the movement style as well, you might find it becomes tiring at times and you can expect your arms to ache after a decent session in the game.
Another warning is TOSS! could trigger some nausea and motion sickness with you throwing yourself around so much, while being static in real-life. Also for those who are scared of heights, the levels do seem really high when looking down in virtual reality, so this could cause some to feel uneasy.
The game comes with around 80 levels, that play across nine worlds, that as previously mentioned are sort of distinct, but could have been more. Adding the three challenges to each level, if you are one that likes to beat every aspect with the sometimes wonky projection from launching yourself and this will offer many hours of fun. Add to this ghost-racing multiplayer aspect, and if you want to set the best times for friends or globally it’s even more to do.
REVIEWED USING PLAYSTATION VR 2
For the purposes of transparency, this review was created using a review code provided by the company or their respective PR company. The use of a press code does not affect my judgement of the product.
One thing I love about VR is when something like TOSS! comes along in amongst a plethora of serious games, and gives people a choice of playing something more light hearted and fun – even if it can be frustrating in places. The game gives me that one more go feeling every time I’ve played it, and in most cases it has been my aching arms that has made me stop over anything. If you are looking for some fun and active platforming action on PlayStation VR 2, then channel your inner monkey and get ready to TOSS!
Release Date: September 7th 2023
Developer: Agera Games
Price: US $19.99 / CA $26.99 / €19,99 / £15.99