Here we find my pick of E3 this year. Moss seemed like such an unassuming title, a little cute mouse friend and a VR title of all things, who knew? That said, what Polyarc have created here is a truly spellbinding experience set in a beautiful world. For the record, I was yet to meet a VR title that I liked. So many seem to be a case of just plonking you down in the middle of an environment and letting you play around with objects in arms reach, or a nauseating run-and-gun title which causes you to bob around until you spew. Moss falls into neither of these traps and flourishes because of it.
The general gist is you use your controller to control Quill, that's your little mouse friend, as she platforms her way through almost diorama-looking levels, where you peer on from the side as an observer providing a pretty unique aspect. Adding to this, you can physically reach into the world with your controller to aid Quill with puzzles and foes alike, creating a teamwork dynamic that's never really been explored before. Quill gallops across the stage, you spin a platform for her to jump through and guide across to the other side of the screen, it's hard to put into words how satisfying and rewarding that feels.
The true wonder comes from when you begin to look around the environment. While your focus is drawn into the area Quill traverses, eventually you look up and realise the world this all happens in is all around you. Trees stretch above you and around, ferns are swaying in the breeze, there are some ruins around a corner you can just make out, reach out with the controller and you can begin to interact with all of this optional beauty surrounding you. At one point, I actually leaned into the screen to look around a corner, and with it being VR, it worked! I could get a peek into the next area we were going to venture into in a way I've been trying to since I first leaped across a gap in a game and leaned forward to 'help them across'. Finally, trying to spot a hiding enemy around a corner is actually possible and it feels great.
Considering this is a first-time game from a first-time studio, I've got to confess I'm a little staggered. While this won't be to everyone's tastes, winning me over with a VR-only title is no mean feat. What Polyarc have achieved here is a fantastic unique title that I'm looking forward to seeing more of in the future. We got to speak to one of the co-founders of Polyarc about Moss and hopefully you'll get a better idea of just how slick this title is.