We did enjoy our time vacationing in the PCVR version of the game, and as this holiday period hits, what better time to go vacationing again. But, this time on the Oculus Quest version of the game, so was the trip just as fun on this stand-alone VR device?
The game does offer some story, but this is more to just allow the gameplay to be in place. Following on from Job Simulator, it’s now time to vacation with your robot friends. Who will have you helping them enjoy their vacation while not offering you much time to have a break yourself… but what did you expect? This is a simulation – welcome to Vacation Simulator.
With this story in mind, the game now introduces the gameplay, which is a group of mini-games. You are introduced to the game and how it works through Vacation Bot and Efficiency Bot, that is there just to measure how well the simulator works. These will show you the three vacation worlds you can visit, these are Vacation Beach, Vacation Forest and Vacation Mountain. All of the worlds are accessible from the beginning – although the explanation of memories made me think they were locked until I had enough memories to unlock them
I’m sure your asking ‘what are these memories, you speak of?’. If you were these are rewards for the mini-games in each location – which will unlock areas in each in location to expand that area a little. These memories are given to you by the number of bots in each part of the island for completing their tasks.
Although, there is a number of activities in each area, this is where the game falls down a little, as a number of the tasks are either repeated or have similarities in each location. For example; you will be collecting bugs in each area, and each one has the same mechanic of locating them and approaching them slowly. Then you will get a task to build sand castles on the beach and ice sculptures in the snowy mountains. Both of these will have you following plans given to you – with the only difference being you will build the sand castles with blocks and chisel away the blocks for the ice sculptures.
This could make people get a bit bored of a rinse and repeat tasks in each area. Although outside of the repeated ones, the other tasks are well designed for each location. Be it working out on the beach, fishing in the forest or throwing snowballs in the mountains. Giving you some break from the repeated tasks.
Then as aforementioned you will get extra areas to unlock with the memories you have collected. With my favourite one being the underwater level on Vacation Beach. Each of these areas again have robots in them giving you more mini-game tasks to carry out.
When it comes to the overall presentation of the game, you will be getting exactly what you were given in Job Simulator. Visually you are placed into very bright colourful and cartoony worlds, that does look very nice on the Oculus Quest version of the game. This completely suits the style and feeling of what Vacation Simulator is offering, and of course kept this inline with Job Simulator, which for this game was going to be important – and despite this cartoon look you will still be immersed in the experience.
One thing we noticed when playing through the Quest version of the game, is this build is the closest like-for-like visually with PC VR we have experience so far.
With one of the standout parts of Job Simulator being the humour, it was again going to be important that this was carried over to your vacation… and I am glad to report this has. The audio work again is on point with fantastic voice acting making sure every line of the humour hits you. Adding to the voices of each robot you encounter on the vacation is the some backing music and the sounds of each environment, making sure you are immersed in each location you visit.
However, where the presentation is still very polished, the team have not really added much more polish to the presentation, which doesn’t make it feel like a step forward in this area. This means that people who have played the previous title, wont get the full charm from what the title offers, compared to people checking this title out first.
Comfort and Controls
With what Vacation Simulator requires you to do, the game can be played seated or standing, it’s all down to your preference. With the only locomotion in the game being point and click teleportation, however, where I am usually a stickler when it comes to locomotion and wanting free locomotion, I don’t think this game is effected by it not being available. Meaning never mind how you prefer or need to play and with the movement system this game is accessible to everyone.
As you would expect in the game each controller with represent the corresponding hand in the game. When it comes to the buttons you use, the grab button to grab objects, and looking at areas while holding the A button will let you know where you can telephone to. With your activities started by waving at the robots in each location, meaning that your activities don’t just start when you go near them – which where this was needed, it is also a nice little touch and brings more interaction for the immersion.
This is quite a tricky area, as a couple of things will determine the play-time each user will get out of the game – with the main areas that could affect this being the past involvement in VR and the age of the player. If you are someone with a good bit of experience in VR, you will pick everything up very easily, and can unlock all the areas in each location quickly. This is down these areas not really needing many memories to unlock, with the only longevity coming to the completionisit who wants to collect all of the memories in each location. However, if you are new to VR, like Job Simulator previously you will spend a good amount of time in the game, with this offering a humorous and easy-going way to find out what the medium is capable of. Then if you have kids this a light-hearted VR game, that could easily become their go to title within the medium.
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.