With winter coming there are a couple of things to get excited for. We have the holidays, we have colder weather, and for some parts of the world, we have snow. And during this time a lot of people go on Winter Breaks to get away from it all. It could be to someplace warmer or it could be hitting the slopes on some fresh powder as you ski or snowboard your way to let you inner Terje Haaksonsn come out as you head down a mountain with the cold wind in your face and just enjoy the outdoors. So does Developer RainSoft Games allow us to try and master a mountain? Let’s find out with Terje Haaksonsen’s Powder VR for PCVR.
I want to stress this upfront that this is an Early Access version of Terje Haaksonsen’s Powder VR. So not everything is available yet or is everything unlocked. So with that said, let’s continue.
Terje Haaksonsen’s Powder VR is a winder sports VR game as you will be able to ski, snowboard, and yes, even use a wingsuit through ice and snow at a crushing velocity as you try to race, get through the checkpoints, and freestyle your way down the mountain. So before you think that this is going to just be a breeze by sitting down and pretending your on a ski lift, I want you to have an understanding of the basics. While it is possible to sit, this is skiing and snowboarding (wingsuit is not available at this time) so to really get into it as much as possible, make sure you have some space and get up, do some stretching of those legs and knees and get ready to hit the snow and ice.
The very first thing you are introduced to is the tutorial. You could skip it, but trust in this, you will want to do the tutorial and maybe for good measure, go through the tutorial a second time just to make sure you have an understanding. You get to decide between skis or a snowboard. Skiing is easier to start but harder to master. Snowboarding is harder to start and easier to master. I tried both and I have to say, for me, snowboarding seemed to work better. But keep in mind that with skiing, you do have poles that you can push off if you need to get some of that extra speed. But the controls are very simple. When you are skiing, if you pretend like you are holding on to handlebars you can easily move to the left and right. With snowboarding, you will have one hand in front of you and the other behind you and just move the hand in front of your left or right. For sharper turns, you will need to lean. To jump, hold down the trigger button(s) and the longer you hold it, the higher the jump. Once you get the hang of it, it starts to feel pretty simple enough.
Once you complete the tutorial, you have some choices to make. Do you want to go on a World Tour, have a Quick Race, or Explore? With the World Tour, you will have six stages with each stage being a different objective. For example, since this is early access and not everything is unlockable or playable, I had the option to go on Broadway Mountain and given the choices of which stage I wanted to do as each one has a different objective with a few repeats. The goal is to try to get as many medals and points as possible so then you can unlock new areas.
Once you are ready to go, you are then given the ability to pick your appearance from your hair to your shoes. Once you are ready, then you are welcomed by a cowboy hat-wearing gentleman who encourages you to hit the mountain just as a way for you to get comfortable out on the mountain so you can win that race and qualify. And I will say that going down the mountain at 60 – 70 mph, seeing the snowfall and hitting those jumps off of hills, and jump and try to defy gravity and hoping that the wind will allow you to miss the tree below or not making that turn sharp enough and knowing you will hit the tree. Just so you know, jumping on a snowboard off of a cliff and hitting a tree or not making the turn sharp enough is just as you would imagine minus the trip to the hospital.
Let’s look at the graphics. Being that this is early access, everything looked really good. There were some parts when you come in close contact with the branches of the trees and just go right through them that it didn’t seem to have that same look as you were passing by at high speeds or from a distance. Not to say that’s a bad thing given that I tried to take short cuts to get to the end by jumping from places that I probably shouldn’t have tried. But when you look out and you can see the sun shining off the water as you come to the end of the really does put a smile on your face. Sound is always an important part of Virtual Reality and from jumping off the helicopter, going down the snow, to even hitting the ice, it sounded like it should and that is a very good thing.
Now, as I mentioned this being early access, there are some things I would love to see improved on and some things added. For one, I hope that a dedicated button for speed. I know the trigger button can do bursts, but there were a few times I was going down the mountain and I seemed to slow down when I should be going faster. I would love to see online play added. To be able to race others or even leaderboards to see who has the fastest times would be exciting to have. I mean think about the fun that could be had here. Racing each other only to run into each other and knock each other down. Or even if someone hits that jump and you could grab a snowball as you were racing and throw it at them just to see what happens would have some incredible moments. Third, I know that not everything was unlocked or playable on the early access version, but we have skiing and snowboarding and wingsuits will be present which is all fun in its own right, but what about the ability to include snowmobiles or innertubes and rafts. Snowmobile racing or innertube and raft racing would be a blast. And lastly, what about the ability to qualify and enter the Winter Games. All the events could be here. I know that’s wishful thinking, but with all the mountains that were shown that were not available with some being hidden, you never know what could should up in Terje Haaksonsen’s Powder VR.
Terje Haaksonsen’s Powder VR gives us the ability to experience that mountain rush all from the comfort of our homes and during a pandemic when things are uncertain, isn’t it good to be able get out in the open air and just escape even if it is virtually?
Terje Haaksonsen’s Powder VR releases in early access on Steam on November 27, 2020, and will also be coming to PlayStation VR at a later date. A review code was provided.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I am going to see how much air I can really get.