At a time arcades were the place to play. It was the place where you would go with your friends and hear some of the greatest sounds and see some of the coolest games. A place where you wanted to show who’s who, you would put down the quarter to be the next one to play to take on the top player. As the games evolved, each one would have its own special flair to them. No longer would you have to stand and just move a joystick, now you could sit and steer or grab the attached gun and shoot whatever was on the screen. It wasn’t about tickets or prizes, it was about how far you could get in the game and get the highest score. When I heard that Ivanovich Games was somehow bringing the nostalgia back and with Operation Warcade for the PlayStation VR, I was very interested to see how this would play out and I am very happy that my expectations were met.
When I first tried Operation Warcade I was thrown back a little. Stepping into this arcade with the sounds and the visuals in Virtual Reality is something that just needs to be experienced and really take in the atmosphere. Yes, the games are all from Ivanovich Games and that is ok. Yes I would love to have tried the other games and who knows, maybe, later on, we will be able to.
But there it was…what I came to play… the Operation Warcade arcade machine. But before you just jump in you have some decisions to make a soldier. First, you need to select how you will go into battle. Do you want the Dualshock 4 controller, do you want to use two Move controllers or do you want to go in like you are Rambo with the Aim controller? All work very well, but I am going to say that I absolutely love playing with the Aim controller. There is just something about where you are supposed to be in an arcade and playing Operation Warcade that has a gun attached and actually using a gun to play. So thank you Ivanovich Games…thank you for allowing me with choices.
Now that you have that choice out of the way, you have another choice. Do you want the version where it looks like you are right in front of the game playing as you would in an arcade or do you want to play the all-immersive mode? At first, I went with the regular version. It felt like I was standing in front of the machine and playing. The enemies went across the screen as they should and it was fine, but then I died. I said alright…Do you want this? So then I went in all-immersive. It was like a whole new perception of VR greatness. I was actually in Operation Warcade.
With the Aim controller in had and in my vehicle moving to the right, the enemies would come from the left or from behind the fences and even on top of roofs. Something came over me, I wanted to look for a bandana and tie it around my head and start my war scream. But a few things, one I did not have so said bandana, two I did not want to have to take off the PlayStation VR headset and three I did not want to disturb anyone. So in my head, I had the bandana and I was doing my Rambo yell.
With me shooting the enemy soldiers to their deaths, I heard the armored vehicles and I took them out…here come to the choppers and I took them out…oh look an enemy in the sniper stand…I took the stand out. You guys think you can hide in that building and you think the glass window will protect you? Better think again…not even Mr. Clean would be able to make those windows shine.
As you move along you will see these squares with symbols. If you shoot them, you will then be allowed for a short time to get into the vehicles. Not only will you be able to get into the vehicles, but you can control them in a free-range motion. This was awesome. I was firing and controlling the vehicle at the same time…then it was over. Oh, how I wanted that part to last. But then I was back in the action shooting whatever I could. There are also weapons that glow and if you shoot them, you can use those weapons and what a variety. After each round, you hear the applause of the other people in the arcade. I was the HERO.
You are then graded on how well you did. Each round will give you objectives such as have a certain amount of kills without missing or rescue prisoners. R.I.P. prisoners of war. Each round is going to have a different feel to them so you don’t really have that sense of redundancy. There really is a lot here with 108 missions with 36 levels with different weapons to unlock and each mission has the top scores.
Some may be put off by the graphics. To me, the graphics add to the nostalgic of the arcades. Not every arcade game had the thrown in your face graphics and that was part of the fun. Not every game has to do that now and that is ok because it is fun. Sound-wise it may not be a full-blown out the orchestra, but neither were some of the arcade games. All and all, not every game is going to be perfect for everyone and again it doesn’t have to be.
But isn’t this what we all want in some form…in some way? A way to bring some of that nostalgia of our childhood of the good times we had with our friends and families and bring that fun and those memories that we once had to a new light and play them in new ways? I would applaud that all day long. If this is what could possibly be the start of something where we could play that game again from our childhood and be allowed to play them again in this immersive way, then it looks like Ivanovich Games just possibly showed us the door to the gateway of fun and exciting ways to experience Virtual Reality.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I have to get back to the chopper.