Doom VFR is, I thought, last year’s Doom in virtual reality, but it’s not quite.
There is VR, but it’s VFR in the title because of the same reason that Doom games have had an ‘F’ in the weapon known as BFG – because it’s a Big Flipping Gun… or something like that.
I loved Doom back in 1993. It was a worthy successor to Wolfenstein 3D, and John Romero gave me gaming memories I’ll cherish throughout my lifetime. He did the same with Doom II, even opening a can of whupp-ass on me in multiplayer at the Revival 2014 event. However, as he moved on to Quake and Quake II, any further Doom titles were nothing to do with him. I never got to play Doom 2016, so figured, PSVR helmet on my head, this was the time to venture into that world… but it’s not.
It’s some sort of alternate set of missions, and as you step into the tutorial, I hit upon a problem with the controls that stopped me moving properly, which at first, I though was the game’s greatest flaw, since while I don’t have Move controllers, yet since the game DOES support the PS4 Dualshock 4 controller, I could only step in four directions, in stilted stages, with the D-pad, while the right analogue stick turned me about, in similarly stilted style. I thought…. hang on… why can’t I just move about as I would any other game?!
It felt more like one of those mobile phone ‘Go’ games, or for something VR-related, Batman Arkham VR – even though it kinda worked in that.
Then I checked the controls and found that whoever thought that should be the default, is depriving a village of an idiot, but thankfully, you can turn that off and move around normally. Also, as shown in my video, when I was in the tutorial, looking at 7 or 8 baddie demons, all turning on the spot in slightly synchronised movement, it was like they were trying to recreate Michael Jackson’s Thriller video! (Oh, and when recording that footage, I have an Elgato HD capture, so when I used it for PSVR, it was PS4 HDMI into the PSVR box, then HDMI into the Elgato, then HDMI out to the TV. My head was spinning BEFORE I put on the helmet! :O )
However, if you play the HTC Vive version, then that stilted version IS how it plays! WTF?! I was going to include the following paragraph before I found the option to change things on the PS4, but for the Vive, you’re stuck with it:
- I don’t think I’ve ever been so disappointed with a game since 2000’s Resident Evil Survivor on PS1, which combined Resident Evil with House of the Dead, and the gameplay turned out to be so dull, it almost made me fall asleep. At lease DOOM VFR looks nice, but it plays like a dog, and gameplay is all.
Back on PS4, and there’s a lot of fun to be had from this, and to see some of the original game’s monsters float about in front of your eyes is quite a mind-bender, but bear in mind that the levels are fairly short and you could whizz through this in a few hours.
Also, as you upgrade your weapons, you find it fairly easy to crack through the levels, e.g. the baddies with impenetrable force fields can be side-stepped then hit them from behind. Also, when I came across a rhinoceros-type baddie in the ravine level, I ran out to a section just outside, and dropped down to a lower level, expecting him to follow me and let me shoot him from behind… but no, he stayed within his lair. I went back to the door of that area and he wasn’t coming out to me… also, he wasn’t shooting, either. I could, so I did, and he died.
Oh, and you can also play original Doom maps, as shown by the video below, which also shows the free movement you experience on the Sony console. I missed the trigger point first time round, so will need to embark on a second journey.
At £15, this is around the right price point for a VR game, but I suffered dizziness in a VR game for the first time, since it’s one hell of an intense experience, due to the fast movement. Now, if we could have the entire DOOM game in this format, that’d be worth another trip into Hell.
Overall Score: 6/10
DOOM VFR – PSVR – How To Unlock The Classic Maps!!!!- Seraphim190
- Developer: id Software
- Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
- Players: Single player campaign
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.