PAX Aus 2019 - Hands on with Iron Man VR

VR titles are finally starting to deliver on the promise of being immersed in the worlds that we have been imagining and Iron Man VR is perhaps the grandest of them all. PAX Australia 2019 gave attendees the chance to suit up and fly, so of course I did.

The thing you need to understand is that the game was a build, which means things can go wrong, the other thing is that wireless controllers tend to have issues when there are a lot of them, which is almost always at a convention. But with those things in mind, I donned the PlayStation VR headset, grabbed a pair of move controllers and took flight and it was amazing. It took a moment to adjust to how to fly, basically a trigger on each controller is the flight stabiliser the appropriate hand, ie if you push the right side only, then you will push to the right, both together and you move forward. As I said, it takes a moment to adjust to it, as you also need to keep your hands in the right position, if you have them raised up, you will push back, so keeping them down is what you need to do, in order to push on, and that I did.

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After seeing some fancy logos, it was time to test out some combat, which is perhaps the most interesting part for the game, as there were some issues with it, but again that could be due to the issues of early code and a show set up. The problem that I had, was anything that was behind me, I could turn around in reality and Iron Me would turn around in the game, that was fine, the problem was that the camera had issues picking up my movements, there were times when raising my hand would raise the hand in game, but in a completely different direction. Other times I would try and shoot, and the arm would not release the shot when I had it aligned, only to shoot a few moments later and not at the target.

This was not an issue when I as attempting to take down the targets, that were stationary, but when I had to do the time trial, things became even more of a mess. The problem again was that in order to get the best time, you have to be able to fly around and when the game has issue detecting where your arms are, the result is bouncing off rocks. Eventually, I started to get into a rhythm, but every now and then, the game would not detect my arm placement and I would bounce around again, eventually I completed the time trial and was then moved onto drones that fought back and the same issues proved to be a problem there as well. It was at this point, I had enough, I could hardly aim and turns out I almost walked into a wall trying to do so, but strangely enough I had fun.

Iron Man VR is a game that I can see being amazing, when it is not surrounded by a multitude of devices that can interfere with the controls, there is also the fact that the team have many more months of development time, so they might come up with a way to get all that corrected, before it releases, but I still can’t wait to suit up as the Iron Avenger again, so bring on February.