In September, Flight School Studio launched its first virtual reality (VR) experience Manifest 99 simultaneously across Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR headsets. Except that didn’t quite happen for one set of consumers, European PlayStation VR owners. With no mention of why this particular section of the community has to wait, Manifest 99 has now arrived on the EU PlayStation Store.
Manifest 99 isn’t a videogame as such, it’s actually more or an interactive story which you can enjoy either seated or standing. It requires no controller as all the interactions are gaze based, from movement to interacting with characters and objects.
The ominous and eerie story is all about finding redemption in the afterlife. Most of the experience is set on a mysterious train inhabited by a murder of crows, and as you travel through each carriage you assist four travel companions on a journey to their final destination. You gaze into the eyes of crows to move to their perch, viewing the world from their scale and perspective. When you find each travel companion you must look into their eyes to uncover their backstory, with each one leading you closer to the reason why you’re on this train traveling into the great beyond.
Manifest 99 is one of those titles that might not instantly seem to be a compelling experience yet it perfectly showcases a unique approach to VR storytelling. The Raindance Film Festival named Manifest 99 the Best Interactive Narrative VR Experience at the 2017 VRX Awards and VRFocus awarded it a five star review, saying: “The story has a much deeper meaning than just a few travellers hitching a train ride – which VRFocus isn’t going to spoil here – safe to say that’s it pulls on the heart strings as a memorable VR experience. If you enjoy short VR animations then Manifest 99 is up there with some of the best.”
You’ll be able to find Manifest 99 on the EU PlayStation Store for £4.99 GBP. Via the American PlayStation store it’s currently $4.19 rather than $5.99 and on Steam for HTC Vive and Oculus Rift it’ll cost you £4.79. When Flight School Studio reveal details about its next project, VRFocus will keep you updated.