Think about all the frustration in your life. How do you deal with it? Maybe you go to therapy, play games, or just escape to think and clear your head. Maybe you just had one of those days when you don’t want to wake up. Everything is not going your way and you don’t really know why, but you want to keep your distance from it all. Maybe you just want to break a lot of stuff. We have all had those moments when we just want to be alone. But does the developer, Single Step Games, show us how to break stuff and have us coming out feeling like our feeling is justified? Let’s find out with Break Stuff VR for PlayStation VR.
Break Stuff VR is a simple but satisfying game that lets you smash, bash, and destroy all sorts of objects you’re given a limited amount of time to break by throwing, swinging, or even shooting projectiles to break things in Virtual Reality. So before you go in and break stuff that you won’t have to pay for, there are a few things that you should be aware of. First, make sure you have some room. You will be swinging, throwing, and launching objects to break everything you can. Second, stretch. You don’t want to throw your arms out only to then tear something which would require surgery all because you didn’t stretch, now would you? Third, make sure those Sense controllers are charged. You only have a limited amount of time to break stuff and you don’t want to be mere points away from unlocking something only to not because you forgot to charge them. Fourth, you may want to actually use those wrist straps. They are there for a reason and your time here will be reason enough to use them. Fifth, remember, play at your own risk and please, only break virtual objects and not real objects. And finally, just have some fun. With all that said, let’s continue…
When you first start the game, you are on what appears to be a stage for a game show where you are the contestant and that you probably signed up for when you had someone tell you that you could win something if you just fill out the card. Your host is a robot that has a head that looks like it’s in one of those old Sci-Fi televisions, with robotic arms, a microphone, a tie, and a torso. That’s it. He welcomes you to the coolest game in the Metaverse, Break Stuff VR. And being a robot, they can’t have emotions, so they basically studied humans and found out that humans like to convert stress into joy. Then you take that joy, have it where you earn points, add some time limits, and bam, you have Break Stuff VR.
So what’s better than letting your stress be gone? There is no clean up and the robots get to observe. So basically, we have AI learning about our emotions and distracting us by putting us on a game show where we break stuff. The rules are simple, throw objects to break stuff which results in earning cash. Use that cash to unlock even more objects and when the robots have enough footage to clear the stage, aka to monitor you, play a bonus round and then move on to the next stage. Pretty simple, right? That’s because it is, that simple to do and play.
The objects that you throw can be something as simple, such as fruit that is good enough to hit a few things, to more explosive things like bombs depending on the stage. As you throw an object another one appears in a different spot. The more continuous objects that you hit, the objects that you really want to use will start appearing more quickly. So throw as much as you can and hit all that you can. There will also be objects that will cost you, but will also help you out more with the points and cash.
But if you think that just throwing objects within the time limit is going to be enough to get you to the next round, you are sadly mistaken. Remember, the robot host said, “When they have enough footage.” That means that you will be replaying the stage over and over until you progress enough to reach that mini-game and unlock the next stage. Which, after playing for a little bit, you will start to realize that the progression takes some time. The flip side to it all is that you are increasing your score, increasing your cash, and hopefully, climbing those leaderboards.
I will say that when you have the opportunity, go into Settings and you can adjust your throw style, throw angle, and even adjust the table height depending if you are standing or sitting. You have the option to adjust the style from regular throwing as you normally would or pull the trigger so your shots can be charged and hope for the best. I did find that the regular throwing style was the most accurate. But just mess with the different options to see what works best for you. Also, by hitting the pause menu, you have the option to see where you place on the online leaderboards, which is always fun to see where you place and who might be on them. When you finally progress to clear the stage and unlock a new stage, you get to play the mini-game which is where you will use a bat to swing and break as much as possible in the time limit so that not only points increase, but your cash as well.
Let’s talk about the graphics and sound. The graphics within Break Stuff VR are good, but could they be better, yes. If you are expecting the highest of graphics, some may be a little disappointed. I am not saying by any means that they are bad in any way as you can clearly see the detail of everything and your scores, cash, timer, and the names on the online leaderboards are clear, It’s just that there is room for improvement. But I did enjoy the design of each level and how accurate the throwing mechanics are. In fact, my favorite level is the Carnival. With the sound design, each level has its own individuality. For example, playing in the parking lot level, I loved how it had that Fall pumpkin patch feel that the music was just this calming music that you can just listen to. Then, when you are throwing the objects, how you can hear the difference between using a smaller object and an object that has more weight to it.
There are some things that I would love to see. First, more stages with more environments. Maybe add more seasonal themes. We have the fall, even though I think it would be fun to break stuff in a haunted house, but let’s see a Christmas one where it’s snowing and you can break stuff in a department store or maybe different locations in the world. Second, it does take a while to progress enough to unlock the next stage. When you keep throwing over and over, there could be a potential for some soreness. So maybe a way to adjust the time it takes to progress might help. But I also understand that you will have players that will want to try and break everything on each stage. Luckily, there are trophies for such a thing, such as breaking everything in the China Shop. Third, having items that you used your cash for, carry over to the next stage. I mean, you earned it, so why not have the ability to have those objects in your arsenal? Fourth, more mini-games. There is nothing like virtually breaking fax machines or a car, but it would just be interesting to see what other virtual things you can break. And finally, multiplayer. There are online leaderboards, so why not have the option to have others play while you are all trying to break things at the same time or have different modes It would also be fun socially.
Break Stuff VR gives us the chance to let our stress levels disappear or at least attempt to have them reduced within the comfort of our own homes where anyone of any age can do so. It doesn’t try to be the shinest china on display but knows where it places and just invites you virtually to take some time and hopefully do some thinking in the process. In life, we all get stressed from the smallest to the biggest of things. We deal with it in our own way and hopefully, the more we start to deal with the stress and learn how to deal with it, we can do it in the most positive way possible. And if we ever need that extra time and it’s just one of those days, isn’t nice that we can virtually break stuff when we need to?
Break Stuff VR is out now on PlayStation VR2 on the PlayStation Store. A review code was provided.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I need to go break some virtual things and try to climb those leaderboards.