Viveport Review: Asteroid Blaster VR
Prepare for classic arcade blasting madness with this homage to the smash hit coin-op game, Asteroids.
By Desmond Madison, Greenlit Content
Strap yourself in for a hyperkinetic space ride in Asteroid Blaster VR, as you don your jetpack in a 3D throwback to the classic rock-blasting 70’s arcade shooter, Asteroids.
The development team at Senomix Research makes no mistake in acknowledging their inspiration from the original Asteroids gameplay, and that’s really the best place to start in imagining what this VR homage has to offer.
With the power to thrust yourself towards large asteroids and UFOs, you grip a gun in each fist, blasting away at each and every rock. Much like the original though, you’ll have limited control over your trajectory once momentum is established, flying forwards around the curve of gravity. Using the thrust as your main means of locomotion will take some getting used to, but with enough practice, it’s rewarding to master your skills flying around each rock.
You should make sure to try the tutorial and practice, practice, practice! Your fingertip and thumbs on the grip buttons will apply a limited amount of thrust, with the left grip for forward and the right grip for backwards, but the buttons are completely mappable in the options menu. Thrust will always be applied in the direction that you look, and to save energy, you’ll want to be sure you’re thrusting in short bursts.
While you’re gliding, your path will not change, so make sure you’re headed in the right direction. You can also always view your status and game score on the screen beside your right-hand gun. Everything recharges after you deplete it, but if you exhaust all 100 percent of your thrust, your recharge will be delayed, leaving you vulnerable to incoming objects. You can also turn on your radar and get a long view of all of your surroundings. Your radar will track all dangerous asteroids within at least 250 meters, but you can always shoot enemies lying outside that range. Bonus items can boost weapons, energy, or score depending on the item.
You also need to be on the lookout for UFOs, as they’ll shoot at anything that moves! Make sure to shoot them down before they escape to maximize your score. Asteroids are your main targets, and you’ll want to break up the largest of them and keep firing as they break off into smaller pieces. Once you’ve cleared all of the asteroids, you’ve finished off a wave and you’re ready to do it again, although at least here you don't have to insert more coins to continue.
There isn’t much more depth to Asteroids Blaster VR, but that is sort of the point. It harkens back to the days of pure arcade simplicity and challenges the you to complete wave after wave of asteroid destruction. It’s great for blowing off steam for a few minutes, or for hopping into marathon sessions trying to topple your high score over and over again.
The dev team at Senomix says it best: “Fly around, shoot stuff, and have fun!” It’s really that simple.