VEV: Viva Ex Vivo
Developer: Truant Pixel
Release Date: Out Now
Nausea: Limited – comes with comfort settings.
Controllers: DS4 Only
VEV takes you under the microscope and let’s you explore a hostile world of strange and fascinating creatures, though it may not hold your attention for long.
VEV is an odd little title. It’s fascinating in concept but rather swallow when it comes to actual gameplay. You take control of a microscopic worm-like machine whose sole mission is to roam the various levels trying to collect as many, almost invisible, particles and merge with them, before either your energy expires, or the fifteen-minute time limit is up.
And you’re not alone. There are other organisms in the sample, fighting for the same energy particles you are. You can attempt to outrun the other organisms or you can attack them at the expense of your overall energy, which is a risky tactic indeed as your energy is slowly depleting by itself as it is.
The environments in which you’ll find yourself are based on numerous samples: water, soil, blood and spinal fluid. The play areas are sizeable and it’s mind-blowing to explore the microscopic world. It’s really cool. As a geek for all things science I was looking around in awe at the giant super-structures of each sample. What were these things called? I had no idea but it made me want to find out.
You can move 360 degrees and in any direction. Turning feels sluggish but this is due to the comfort settings – turn speed is set to slow by default. Once you have your VR legs you can dial it all the way up to fast and it feels much better.
Don’t let the first level (water sample) put you off, like it almost did me. It’s barren and not visually impressive. The second level is the polar opposite. The particles you’re tasked to collect are much more plentiful, giving you more to do than swim around aimlessly, and it’s also looks a lot prettier. The later level, ‘Blood’ is even better looking, with red blood cells flying around the place. The difficulty ramps up pretty quickly though, with enemy organisms trailing you relentlessly. There a few unlock-able levels but I haven’t managed to unlock them yet – as I said the difficulty increases sharply.
There isn’t a lot more to VEV but considering the price you wouldn’t really expect there to be. The first few times you play through a level you’ll have fun and possibly, like myself, be in awe at how cool it is to experience the world on a microscopic level.
Verdict: 6/10 – Considering the price tag you might as well give it a go.