“This made me believe in VR.”
Story & setting
We […] put on an HTC Vive and entered the year 3007. We were among the last human survivors living on a space station above an Earth that was devoid of life. Our crew had received a message from the barren planet below: “My name is HUXLEY and I need your help!”
HUXLEY’s virtual Earth was a magnificently rendered WALL-E-esque wasteland where we met a WALL-E-esque robot who was a bit angrier than Pixar’s cute creation. […]
HUXLEY was a fantastic puzzle game. It had unusual puzzles that took advantage of the virtual world and allowed us to do, see, and solve things that are impossible in meat space.
Additionally, these puzzles required teamwork.
It really worked. The motion tracking was perfect. Lisa did not get even slightly motion-sick. Every other time she has ever put on a VR visor, she has become queazy within minutes. She spent 45 minutes in this world without the slightest issue.
The puzzles were smart. There was one puzzle in particular that I desperately want to spoil because I want to talk about it. I won’t spoil it… but I want to. It involved something that is physically not possible in real life.
HUXLEY was a truly collaborative escape room. Whereas our past VR escape room experiences were either solo games or didn’t include satisfying group interaction, HUXLEY required teamwork and made it feel natural.
We each selected a cute avatar. These were initially a little off-putting, but successfully eliminated the issues that usually arise in VR from having false, non-representative, and non-reactive bodies.
The gamespace was gorgeous. This wasn’t some homebrew virtual world made of purchased and slightly tweaked renderings. Huxley was professionally designed.
HUXLEY used the substantial physical space in the virtual one. The world was big and open and the mechanism for traversing it was brilliant.
Because we wore all of the gear – including the computer – on our persons, there weren’t wires in the way.
Should I play Exit VR’s HUXLEY?
Absolutely. If you can play HUXLEY, you should go play it.
We’ve played a number of VR experiences over the past few years and they have been a mixed bag. Until I entered the world of HUXLEY, I never believed that I would truly want to play VR… not in the current generation anyway.
HUXLEY was a virtual escape room done right: it limited the impact of the weaknesses of VR, while creating gameplay that wouldn’t be possible in the physical world. It was a great escape game.
HUXLEY is available for licensing. I know nothing about their pricing, but I would love to see this game proliferate. That said, please do not license it unless you have the space and will to do it right. Don’t cut corners. This game is too much fun for a hobbled experience.