What if you somehow were placed in a room with just four walls with no signs of any doors, how would you feel? Would you scream, would you start placing the blame on others or would you try and escape even if the answer was not as obvious as you would think? These are very real answers given the situation that you are in. Does Developer Gamedust allow us to enter the challenge of trying to escape a cube of horror? Let’s find out with Neverout for the PlayStation VR.
So what is Neverout about. First, you need to decide if you want to play in VR or non-VR. I, of course, when with the VR version. What I really liked from the start of Neverout is that there are no instructions, there is no map, there is nothing beyond the four walls of this cell. It’s up to you to try and figure out how to escape each level. But how do you escape? Somewhere within the walls is a number for the next level that you must step on so it puts you in the next level. It’s a simple concept that works really well, but not as simple as you might think especially when the walls seem to start almost anticipating and reacting in a way to your move.
There will be obstacles that will get in your way that you will need to either avoid or help use to your advantage. Steel that can be walked on to electricity to even being squashed by things above you is all here to make sure you try and not escape. Electricity will, of course, shock you, and orbs that are portals will teleport you to the other portal But I will say that moving around trying to figure out the right path if you will, to get to that next number level and then hearing that sound as that metal deathtrap falls on you and squishes you at first is something you do not expect. It’s the unexpected of what, when, and how Neverout tries to end you and crush your dreams of escaping that is the fun part.
Let’s talk about the controls a little bit. The game can be played with the DualShock 4 or a Move controller. I chose to go with the DualShock 4 and it worked perfectly. Head tracking is used here so depending on the direction you are looking, that is where you will be going. So keep that in mind when you are planning out your strategy. You will also notice that when you go towards a wall that will rotate, the blinders will flash in a way. When it was happening I had to think about why it was doing that. Yes, you are in this small confined place, but when you play it in VR, the blinders are sometimes necessary to help restrict the movement so that those who may be prone to some motion sickness.
So imagine falling off a block and gravity taking it’s toll or moving in this small space. It’s to help more than anything. It only is there for a second and who knows that there could be an option later to not have them in, but I personally did not experience any motion sickness or nausea while playing. But it’s when the extra care like this is put in, you can really appreciate what the Developer thought about when making Neverout.
Immersion wise, I felt like I was in a closed-in space. With that being said, with over 60 levels, there is going to be some familiarity with some of the levels. This is not a bad thing, but when you add even more of the puzzles to the level, it starts to get really interesting. I thought of it more as a reward for getting past the levels more than a punishment.
Sound-wise there is not some musical score. Your goal is to escape and hearing the sounds of the steel falling or electricity pulsate through a level added to my sense of confinement and started to add to my importance of needing to escape.
Sometimes we enter a world where a journey will allow us to solve puzzles along the way, but sometimes the world will trap us in order to try and keep us from escaping. And no matter how stuck we may appear in life, sometimes you have to go backward in order to move forward.