I remember playing Turok 2 back in the day and feeling the epic satisfaction of finishing off a raptor just before it could pounce on me. Well, imagine recreating that feeling of epic dinosaur hunting-ness--only in virtual reality. This year's VRLA housed a lot of HTC Vive demos, one of the more notable booths housing a dino game named Island 359, a game by Cloudgate Studio. The premise is that you're dropped off onto an island to kill the dinosaurs. Simple. While the game appears to be more of a competition genre, the experience of actually fending off a Procompsognathus (those damned Compies) is something that can't be explained in words.
The demo we tried out was short-lived (as we didn't live long in the game), but it combined different movement schemes in a virtual reality environment. The game was set up for room scale so we could still explore a limited range of motion. That allowed us to bend down and pick up ammunition and other important items, so interaction was a little mixed in terms of how it functioned. Most of the time our jungle expanse was traversed by pressing forward on the Vive controller, but every now and then getting items required us to walk over to said items to explore further. Still, there's nothing quite like holding up a Vive controller and smashing the trigger to take our a raptor just before it's face gets to yours. Virtually, of course.
We're still waiting on a real-life Jurassic Park, but this is the closest thing yet to fighting for survival on Mr. Hammond's island. We're hoping for a story mode integration--blasting apart dinosaurs is definitely fun, but having a story mode would definitely make things more interesting. Details are light, but we'll keep an eye on it as it develops.
Here's a trailer!