Viveport Review: Glider Island VR
This gliding simulation brings the fun of old school retro games to virtual reality in a fresh new way.
By Joshua Hawkins, Greenlit Content
The idea behind Glider Island VR is simple. You take off from a launch point and then have ten minutes to glide around, collecting rings similar to those you might see in old retro games. It’s a simple idea for a simple application, and the simplicity pays off by offering a fun experience that never asks too much of the player.
The overall premise behind Glider Island VR is to fly around and collect hoops while you try to stay in the air. You can do so by rotating between dipping and rising with your glider. You’ll also need to keep an eye out for boosters, which will allow you to gain more speed and stay in the air longer. As I said before, it’s a very simple system, and if you can survive in the air for the full ten minutes of each map, you’ll need to keep flying around and gather as many hoops as possible.
The visuals in Glider Island VR aren’t the best, but for a game that’s more about being in the air than on the ground, it’s more than acceptable. FPS is a very important factor in an experience as fast-paced as Glider Island VR, so it’s a good thing that the developers chose to take a more realistic approach to graphics rather than trying to have the best-looking game around.
You fly around in first-person (or third-person), and you’ll be glad that the developers have focused on FPS over visuals. I don’t get motion sick very often in virtual reality, but I even found myself a little nauseous feeling at the end of my first hour run. This means that other users who are more prone to motion sickness will want to be careful and take their time with the game, playing in smaller doses. Once you grow more accustomed to the movements and the speed, though, you should be fine to enjoy longer play sessions.
Once nice thing about Glider Island VR is the replayability. While there are only a few levels included, it’s easy to replay each one and attack the levels from different directions. It reminds me of the old school retro games that I used to play—games like Sonic—that challenged you to collect as much as you could as you tried to stay alive and complete the level. It’s a nice change of pace from the more serious experiences that I’ve been playing in virtual reality, and it’s a welcomed buffer between slower-paced virtual reality experiences and more fast-paced games that require more attention and ability to deal with motion sickness.
All around, Glider Island VR is a nice experience that has a lot of hours of fun, and it’s definitely one I’d recommend people check out when they have the chance.