Vanimals Games is well known for its arcade hack n slash series Eternity Warriors which has seen several iterations released on mobile devices over the last six years. So now the developer has turned its attention to virtual reality (VR) bringing that same universe to HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, giving players a chance to engage in all out combat.
The early access release features three standard type characters (or loadouts), Warrior, Hunter or Gunner. Naturally each has its own particular strengths and weaknesses depending on how you like to play. The Warrior is the close range specialist – and probably the most fun – equipping you with a massive sword in one hand and a shield in the other. All the loadouts have secondary options, so once the sword is charged it’ll let out a long distance attack, while the shield hand can also fire a massive laser beam – both good for ranged enemies.
The Hunter is the bow carrying character, good for those who like to keep things at a distance, although because you’re rooted to the spot it does tend to be the weakest of the three as you can’t move to maintain that distance. To help, the bow has explosive fire arrows and seeker arrows which can lock on to multiple enemies which do work very well. Should things get close quarters the bow hand can release a stasis field for a short time and the bow can be used like a blade. It was just nowhere as good as the warrior’s sword.
Lastly there’s the Gunner and as the name implies you’re dual wielding a pistol and shotgun. There’s no need to worry about ammo or reloading, the pistol is infinite and the shotgun reloads automatically and quick. This is another very good class as the pistol can be charged for high damage, rapid fire shots, and the shotgun can place a small shield to protect against incoming projectiles.
Currently gameplay consists of killing waves of enemies across five rounds. The same area is used but you do move around it, offering different hostile spawn locations. If you know the Eternity Warriors franchise then you’ll already kind of know what to expect, Vanimals Games isn’t trying to sell you some massive story driven adventure, just the fun action sequences boiled down into one experience. Even at this stage it’s a hoot. Parrying an enemies strike with the warrior’s shield flings them up into the air where you can juggle them with your sword which never gets old.
Plus Eternity Warriors does look gorgeous which always helps. The enemy characters are very well crafted and highly detailed – very noticeable when they’re right up in your face – and so is the one location, with the last round overlooking a city in ruins.
VRFocus previewed the single-player but there’s also a coop multiplayer mode as well, so you can team up with a mate (or stranger) to help protect your back. This should help add to the longevity of the experience. Otherwise Eternity Warriors would be fairly short lived, which good graphics alone can’t save. It’ll be interesting to see how Vanimals Games goes about expanding the title as development continues.