Pinball FX2 VR
Developer: Zen Studios
Release Date: Out Now
Controllers: DS4 Only
From the makers of Zen Pinball comes Pinball FX2 and all the tables you know and love, back in deliciously immersive VR – if you don’t mind forking out for the tables all over again.
I’ve always loved pinball but I don’t have the money nor the room for any actual pinball tables in my own home. The Zen Pinball franchise has been a great way to get my pinball fix from the comfort of my sofa. You can imagine how excited I was when I heard they were releasing a VR version. Is it everything I’d hoped it’d be? Yes and no.
For starters, the hub from which you select the table you wish to play, check high scores and trophies and organise which pinball tables are in the room, (you can have three on show at once) is absolutely gorgeous. It’s a beautifully designed and graphically exquisite. I really wanted to go exploring but unfortunately you can’t really move around – you look at the menu/table you want to select and do so from a distance. You do move around the ground floor but you teleport instantly.
There are only three tables available to you with the base game: Epic Quest, Secrets of the Deep and Mars. Whilst all these tables are fun, I’ve already played them to death and bought them several times over several different platforms. This was my choice of course, and I understand that extra work went into getting these tables into VR, but it’d would’ve been appreciated to have been given a slight discount. If you want to play The Walking Dead table (currently unavailable in the UK) you’ll have to buy it separately. And if you want CastleStorm, Wild West Rampage, BioLab, Paranormal, and Earth Defence you’ll have to purchase the Season 1 pack for a whopping £19.99.
Graphically the room in which you play is brilliant – the tables on the other hand are not quite so great. It’s not Zen Studio’s fault, but more the limitations of the hardware, but nonetheless it is quite jarring to go from beautifully looking 2D tables in Zen Pinball to pixelated VR ones here. If you haven’t played a previous instalment this may not bother you as much.
The main room changes depending on which table you’re playing. If you’re under the ocean in Secrets of the Deep the room fills with water. If you’re off adventuring in Epic Quest, the hero will ride his horse round the table as you play.
I did find that the tables were positioned far too low for comfort – it wasn’t long before I got neck-ache. Luckily you can adjust the view by leaning forward/standing up and pressing square.
If you haven’t played a Zen Pinball title before then you’re in for a treat. Epic Quest is my personal favourite of the bunch. You play as a stalwart, yet feeble warrior on a quest to save the princess. Throughout the course of your run you battle skeletons, bats, brave the forest and attempt to cast magic spells. After you successfully defeat monsters – by shooting the balls up specific ramps – you can obtain and equip loot which persists from game to game, even after you lose. Mars and Secrets of the Deep are also fun; you’re not given a dud table with the base game.
If you’re a Zen Pinball addict like myself then Pinball FX2 VR is a no brainer, but expect to pay through the nose for tables you already own and have played to death. If you’re new to the franchise then this is the perfect time to jump in; playing pinball in VR is the best way to play.
Verdict: 7/10 – Might not be worth it if you’ve already played these tables to death.