Superhot is the super stylish, super interesting, super puzzle shooter that has been a round for a while on PC now. When it was revealed for consoles at E3 I was intrigued, when it was revealed especially for PSVR I was super excited.
Here’s the kicker, the game is played in short bursts or snippets of action, the action moves when you move and is otherwise frozen.
The idea is to move, plan, move – get to the weapons, attack the bad guys in the right order like some methodical Jack Reacher and dodge bullets like Neo from The Matrix. Clear? Good.
For the uninitiated Superhot throws the player into a very stylised first person shooter world, in stark contrast to its peers Superhot has a signature grey/white appearance, which leaves you feeling like you are trapped in some paper diorama. The enemy figures are basically red crystallised mannequins and weapons or objects are black.
In the full versions you can move around like a regular FPS, bearing in mind that the red bad guys will be closing in every millisecond you are moving. In the PSVR version, as a clever way of avoiding any motion sickness is that all your bending, ducking, weaving and aiming count as movements. You can shuffle around a limited area, but in general the scenes are navigated without any depth of motion. This is fine by the way.
The game is actually played out against some narrative, this creeps up on you, where you begin accepting the white world and the task in hand. As things unfold, it appears that you are surviving a simulation within the game, this is brought to your attention between sequences in a broom cupboard of a room piled with PCs and a door covered with graffiti. On closer inspection the graffiti relates to the games trophies and they get covered in post-it notes as they pop during gameplay and float around for you to grab, this is a really nice way of handling trophies in PSVR.
Each sequence comprises of a number of shorter scenes, while these scenes do not change as such, there are times when the AI throws in a move that you weren’t expecting which is nice for some variety. Some are relatively easy and others can be hard, however they are insanely replayable and the quick restart for just one more go can lead to 2am finishes more often than not.
It really is all about knocking out the red guys as efficiently as possible and remembering that you can stop, take a breath and plan your next move. It is all too easy to get swept up with catching a weapon and shooting the enemy about to clobber you with an axe, but forgetting about the Uzi that is being shot at you from across the room.
What’s also nice is the interconnectivity of the areas, when you replay enough you realise the next area is accessible and there is a vast amount of coolness on offer if you can throw yourself a weapon into the area you are about to pop into. My crowning glory was to toss a bottle across a room, accidentally move on to the next wave and watched as it smacked my first attacker squarely on the jaw. Of course I can’t replicate that moment and forgot to capture it.
The PSVR suits the game just fine, there is absolutely no motion sickness, the game can be played for extended periods and the move controllers are spot on apart from the odd wobble.
While Superhot is not an FPS in the traditional or Farpoint sense, its a fantastic take on the puzzle genre and is an absolute must for anybody with a VR unit. That ‘one more go’ mentality and the Neo like sense of Oneness that comes from clearing rooms efficiently will keep me coming back well into the early hours. Great stuff.