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As someone who really doesn’t really get invested in Mech games in VR, BIG SHOTS caught my interest with it’s trailer. However, I wasn’t sure what type of game it was going to be… was it a story-based adventure? was it tower defense? I really had no idea.

Release Date: April 18th 2024
Developer: AlterEyes
Publisher: MyDearest
Price: TBC
Reviewed On: DPVR E4 Black
* Code Provided For Review *

Fun, Frantic And Punishing

As aforementioned I was not sure what BIG SHOT’s was actually going be gameplay wise from the information available, but I was surprised to find out it was a roguelike when booting it up for my first game. With the amount of games coming out in this genre lately, you have to do something special to stand-out from the crowd.

At first I was thinking Mech has already been done with UNDERDOGS, but after attempting my first run the fact its not as gritty and more about shooting than melee it does feel very different to that game. As you would expect with the genre you are going to be getting temporary upgrades as you complete your run. Then you will be unlocking and purchasing permanent upgrades to create your perfect build for your play-style, to combine with the temporary upgrades offered after each wave and boss.

Each shift in the game will see you taking on a number waves before fighting a boss that come with different styles of attacks, but unfortunately look no different in design. Of course as you would expect as you start to install permanent upgrades, which you can add six in total. This will start to make each run easier as you get the right build for you. In this regard the progression system seems well designed, as you keep getting further and further each run, but you will hit a difficulty spike to slow you down, although this happens it feels completely fair.

When it comes to the unlocks and being able to purchase the upgrades, there is only four weapons, with two of them being available from the start (Gatling gun and flame-thrower), the others are a grenade launcher and a laser. There is then a decent amount of permanent upgrades to unlock and choose from, as well as unlocking five-special attacks. Outside of the upgrades there is also a number of cosmetics to unlock, but these are more for your co-op partner to see, as these are all external.

Speaking of co-op this is the one thing I love about BIG SHOTS and feel this will give the game more longevity, as when playing co-op with the VRverse co-host Dr Oculus it was certainly a lot more entertaining, even though the single-player will keep you entertained in it is own right. I think this is the area that makes BIG SHOTS stand out from the crowd, as co-op mode makes it a lot fun and frantic.

However, I am not sure once you have unlocked everything you will find a reason to go back into it for more runs, as I think once you have perfect build from all the unlocks you will find it hard to move away from that build. I hope down the line they add more weapons, as four seems quite limited and more upgrades, as this could make players want to go back in and maybe see if they can now create a better build. 


One thing that struck me from the initial trailer was the Borderlands style visuals, which is a visual style I would love the see more in VR – with the bright, bold and colorful cell-shading really popping in Virtual Reality. This means everything inside your own Mech, locations you play in, the enemies and your co-op partners Mech all look great and with this style I think it will offer parity across all platforms (I have only played the PCVR version so cannot confirm it does). This visual choice also allows for the damage numbers, words like PEW and THUNK popping up in a cartoon font and the big green skulls for each enemy death work well and feel suited.

For the audio the games comes with chunky sounds for each weapon be it the Gatling guns, laser beams or the grenade launcher, with the flame-thrower sounding very flamey… if that makes sense. The noise of weapons is mixed the enemy noises and splodges when you kill them and a fantastic soundtrack that feels like a mix of rock and western – that again would not feel out of place in Borderlands.



The Verdict

BIG SHOTS certainly has it positives and with it offering co-op and a visual style that makes it stand out in an over-populated genre in Virtual Reality. With fun and hectic gameplay whether playing single-player or co-op, but the later certainly stands out as the mode you want to play it in. However, at the moment with the amount of upgrades available and them being quite quick to unlock it might have limited playtime for people – and I think some post launch content will be needed to keep it fresh, especially when it comes to offering more than the four weapons that are currently available. But, while you are playing it you will have a lot of fun, and where the progression of the difficulty becomes punishing quite quickly it also feels fair – and wants you to refine you build and go back in to try and push on further.