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PSVR2 GamesReviews

Pavlov Review

Pavlov is the only shooter of its sort that is available in the launch library on PlayStation VR 2, and it has been popular within the PCVR community for some time. So, with this in mind I was very interested to see if it could hold its ground on Sony’s latest hardware and keep shooter fans happy – but, is it a hit?

GAMEPLAY

What Pavlov looks to offer as it’s main draw is the realistic gun and reloading mechanics, and it certainly offers these in abundance. What might be a bit of surprise and also take some getting used for new players is the sheer amount of weapons available and getting used to how to reload them all – from pistols, automatics to bolt action rifles.

Outside of what is offered by the fantastic weapon systems and gunplay, is a large amount of game modes that are available – with the standard modes being mixed with some modes I found really stood out (which we will touch on later).

For standard modes Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch and Search and Destroy are available on both online and offline (with bots) – with Gun Game, a zombie and horde like mode being added to the roster. You will get what you expect from the Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch modes, and Counter Strike fans will certainly be taken in by Search and Destroy.

The aforementioned game modes that really stood out to me while playing Pavlov were ‘The Hide’ – which brings a predator style game into the mix. In this mode will you either be a predator style character that has blades on the arms, can jump high and see heat through walls or a soldier that is trying to take them down. The aim of the game is to get everyone turned in the predator or to kill all of the predators as the other team.

Next is ‘Trouble in Terrorist Town’ (TTT), which is an Among Us type mode and this gets really fun and includes the roles of innocents, traitors and detectives – but includes a large number of guns to make getting deceptive that much more fun.

Finally there is the ‘Prop Hunt’ mode, which like the standard modes available you get what you would expect here. This is certainly a mode that is so much a fun and a laugh with friends or others online.

I think one thing that they need to work out is getting the mod framework over onto the PlayStation VR 2 version, but I think this might be a sticky point for Sony to allow it. As stepping into Call of Duty maps not only on multiplayer but in Zombie mode are some of my fondest memories with the PCVR version. But, this is not a reason to avoid the PSVR2 version, as there is still plenty to do with what is available – and the standard modes could be enough to keep many players happy, and then there are plenty of extra modes and sixty-five weapons and many attachments to get used to and try out.

PRESENTATION

When it comes to presentation everything in the game from the weapons to the map textures all look sharp inside of the HMD, and are running very fluid at 120hz – made possible by the eye-tracked foveated rendering offered by the PSVR2.

With the reloading and weapon mechanics, it is important they got the audio right to keep it all feeling realistic – and they have pulled this off, with some of those bolt action rifles really packing a punch in the audio area. With the maps sounds matching the environments they are set in keeping you fully immersed in the game.

The in-game VOIP is solid and is very clear and so far over my time joining random matches, the community overall seems to be very willing to communicate – which is very important in a game like Pavlov.

COMFORT/CONTROLS

Pavlov is made with VR veterans in mind when it comes to the comfort, with the game being a competitive online shooter where is only smooth locomotion and no teleporting. They have tried to negate this by offering the vignette option, but this is not always in successful in combating motion sickness for everyone.

Outside of the standard movement with the analogues, the games controls come down to the previously mentioned advanced reload system – and this is going to taking getting used to, well until you find your favorite load-outs and the reloads become a second nature. But, you need to be patient if getting all your practice in online, because it can get easy to mess up your reload in a tense battle situation.

One thing that stands out on the PlayStation VR 2 version is the adaptive triggers on the controllers. Along with the very realistic reloading system for each gun, this has allowed them to make firing each gun also feel different. Add to this the headset haptics, that allow for you to know when you were taken out by a headset from the other team.

LONGEVITY

With there already being many game modes, the vast amount of weapons available and the realistic reload and gun mechanics, I really see it holding a player base on PSVR2 – which is always required for a competitive online shooter. However, at the moment it has no competition in the market on PlayStation VR 2, so I means only time will tell. But, I feel with the cross-platform option (you need to activate in settings) mixing it with the ever popular PCVR version you shouldn’t have an issue finding games – even if the mod framework cannot be introduced.

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

REVIEW OVERVIEW

Pavlov has finally hit the PlayStation eco-system and brings with it everything any shooter fan would want. Be it the many game modes online and a great selection of modes offline, mixed with the plethora of weapons based around realistic reload mechanics and all handling and feeling different. With the realism only enhanced by the adaptive triggers available on the controllers – really making each gun feel different to fire and bringing the most realistic Pavlov experience with it. With what is on offer I can see it sticking as a staple of the PSVR2 community and allowing cross-platform play will certainly boost up the servers with how popular it is with the PCVR player-base

GAME DETAILS

Release Date: February 22nd 2023
Developer: Vankrupt Games
Publisher: Vankrupt Games
Price: US $24.99 / CA$ 33.49 / €24.99 / £19.99

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