Time Travel can be very interesting. The whole idea of being able to go to the past or go to the future. Will it result in another timeline? Will we really disappear from pictures if we do not get our parents together at The Enchantment Under The Sea Dance? Can we actually leap into others to help set the wrong things right? These ideas have been flowing around for a long time. And when I learned that Wales Interactive was bringing Time Travel and mixing that with dinosaurs, zombies, monsters and robots and bringing it to PlayStation VR, I got very excited to see what Time Carnage was all about.
Time Carnage first and foremost is a wave shooter, but it’s a wave shooter that involves Time Travel. There is not really a campaign story here, so you don’t really get the sense of your purpose other than to get rid of the threats of each stage. Which honestly is fine, because getting the sense of what it might be to actually travel through time is part of the fun.
So with that being said, I made up my own what-if scenario and it works (at least for me). Some of you may remember a show called Quantum Leap where Dr. Sam Beckett would “leap” into people. It could be regular people or famous people and he had to set the wrong thing right in order to be able to leap with the possibility to go back home. In the end, he was able to go back home, but to save his friend, he had to leap again. But what-if he leaped into a person that was a time-traveler with access to weapons and he had to correct these times to get rid of the threats in order to get back home?
Before you can go on you want to make sure to use both Move controllers and you will want to stand for this one. You could use only a single Move controller, but to get the sense of it all, you will want both controllers. You can also sit, but where you have to reach out to the sides and to be really immersed here, you will want to stand.
Now that we have a purpose, let’s continue. Before you go out there through time with hostile threats (because hey you are the one who just showed up in their yard thinking it’s all yours) you must be able to defend yourself, right? I mean you don’t want to be traveling all over the place without some type of defense now, would you? So with that said, it’s time to pick your weapons. At first, you are only able to select between two different weapons. The more stages you clear, the more weapons you will get to unlock.
One of the great things I really like about Time Carnage is the ability to have different weapons to select from. At one time you can select four different weapons. They all don’t have to be the same, but each one has a different look, different power, can hold different amounts of ammo…the selection of after you unlock them is really quite generous. So once you have made your choice, it’s time to lock and load the Move Controllers and leap on out of there.
As you are on your platform this inner space is moving past you and getting you to your destination. When you appear in any environment, the way it looks as though time is bending is truly remarkable in Virtual Reality. It’s almost like something you would see in a movie. The environments are very clear and detailed. Each one feels like its own time and that really is important when you have a game that has Time Travel in it. So I applaud Wales Interactive for that.
As time finishes bending, you will see the four weapons you selected. You can pick any two at a time. So yes you will be dual-wielding weapons here. You use the move button to pick up the weapons and when you run out of ammo, just hit the move button again on each controller and that will release the weapons back into its spot and allow you to pick up the other two weapons. This is why I suggest standing. Being able to just at a whim pick up two weapons and fire at the enemies and then put a button and then pick up the other ones. Once you have this movement down, it will come really natural. Once you release the weapons, the ammo will replenish. Part of what I find that adds to the challenge is that the ammo does not replenish quickly on all weapons equally. The shotgun, for example, reloads you would almost think it would take to reload six shells into it in real-time.
Other than the weapons you will have a shield. By allowing the enemies to get too close to you, will cause damage to your shield around you. When things start turning red, you will either need to accept your fate and try to go down in a blaze of glory or try to aim better. One thing I do enjoy is the Time Paradox. When this blue hole of light appears, shoot it and it stalls time and not only do you feel awesome traveling through time, but you get to turn on ‘beast’ mode that even Jean Claude Van Damme and Keanu Reeves would be proud.
The enemies do seem to be a little lifeless like they need an energy drink. Honestly, it’s not all that bad. But I do wish some of them made some noise. When you are firing in one direction and notice your shield is being attacked on the other and did not see this rabid freakish animal, it would be nice to just hear some footsteps or growling or moaning when they get close. Now, this could have been done on purpose in a way to help you be more aware of your surroundings or maybe when one does travel through time, one’s hearing is impacted by so said traveling.
As I mentioned, this is a wave shooter and there are 10 waves in each stage. Each wave, of course, gets a little more difficult and your awareness intensifies. But being able to use the different combinations of weapons really adds a certain freshness to each level. Also, not only can you unlock new weapons, but also new perks and challenges. This really adds to Time Carnage. Challenge Mode allows you to enter a wave based on the situation of the challenge. There is also an arcade mode that is more of a create the way you want to play. You want a certain perk or perks with certain weapons and only face certain enemies, then this is the mode for you.
Sound-wise is everything going to be perfect, no. But hearing the groans of the zombies or the barking and growling of the creatures from a distance so you know they or something is coming is great. The music got me excited for what was about to come. Visually the details of your hands and the environments closer to you are really well done. There are some levels that it might be a little darker than others for some, but based on where or when you are and who or what you might be facing, it doesn’t need to be the brightest thing. I mean if I am out at a level where it is dark and see some contaminated toxic ooze to help light the way to add to make me feel like it’s about to go down, then so be it.
Time Carnage really does offer a lot from the selection of weapons to the challenges. When you add the immersion of being there and being able to travel through time and getting that feeling of time-bending so you can begin, it truly is good. Would I like some of the enemies to have some random movement? Yes, but who knows, that might be able to be added later on. All I know is I am happy about the future of Virtual Reality. Dreams come from ideas. Ideas come from thinking. Thinking comes from wondering. Then maybe allowing us to come up with our own purpose will allow us to start to wonder to think of the ideas that dreams are made of.
Time Carnage is out now on PlayStation VR and is also available on the Oculus Store, Steam, and Viveport. A review code was provided.
To learn more about Wales Interactive, please visit their site, like them on Facebook, follow them on Twitter and subscribe to their YouTube channel.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I have some more time traveling to get to.
Mr. PSVR, April 14, 2018, theplaystationbrahs.com