World War Toons PSVR Review

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World War Toons beta is a free to play first person shooter launched October 13th with on PSVR and PS4

I first found World War Toons when browsing the PlayStation store the day I got my PSVR headset, and added it to my downloads, because, what the heck, it’s free. It sat in my library for a week while I played the other launch titles like REZ, Battlezone, and Driveclub VR. I finally got around to playing it after watching a youtuber playing online, and had to go and see if it was as bad as the video made it out to be (it wasn’t).

There are 16 characters and 4 classes of characters in World War Toons:

  • The Heavy: a rocket launcher wielding brute with a leap-smash ability called the “Bulk smash”.
  • The Sniper: a sharp shooter with gun that “inflates” heads for head shot, and an exploding “Bombelganger”.
  • The Officer: a fleet footed force of nature with a bullet avoiding “Ballet Time”.
  • The Soldier: a machine gunner with the special ability to heal themselves and teammates with “Pik-a-Nik Basket”.

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Each class brings something different to the battlefield, and I hope they add more classes in the future. I liked the soldier the most, as it seemed to be the most balanced and easy to play. Being able to self heal made a huge difference. The Officer was fun to run circles around your opponents, the Heavy was good for quick eliminations, and the sniper made head-shots easy and satisfying.

World War Toons is set in an over-the-top cartoon universe. Spring loaded launchpads that launch you across the maps, onto building rooftops, and from one airship to another. Power-ups straight out of the ACME catalog like a giant red rockets, Uranium power cells, giant bouncing bombs, an exploding Kool-aid man, and falling pianos mix up the gameplay, and keeps the players moving around the map to avoid the constant chaos.

Each character class also has a tank ability that can be powered up over time, and sped up with bonuses from crates, and kills. Tanks come in light, medium and heavy varieties, and have charged and standard shots. Tanks more than anything else can affect the balance of the game, but a fair amount of the time, players activate the tank abilty at the same time.

The two factions of the game are the Axis and Allies. Aside from outward appearance share the same ability sets. Trooper types each have a set of alternate skins and personalities. My favorite variations were the Axis officer “Sturmshark” and soldier “Otto bot”. Characters have their own individual voice lines upon spawn, death, and opponent elimination, and for the most part are “cute”, similar to other multi-player games in this genre. I appreciated that the Axis quotes weren’t overtly “Nazi”, and no direct Third-Reich imagery was present in the game, but I would have appreciated it if the quotes were in English, and not German. Otto Bot says something about “John Connor” that I assume is a Terminator reference, but the rest of it was lost on me.

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There are four maps in the game:

  • Moulah Ruse is a “free for all” map with a Christmas theme for the holiday. This map has the most personality, is totally chaotic, and was the most fun to play.
  • Sacre Blue is a war-torn French village team deathmatch map that seemed to re-spawn you a little too close to the combat at times, but overall a good experience.
  • Pyramid Scheme is a cartoony Egypt capture the flag match with Indiana Jones like traps. This was one of the more confusing maps to play, and took multiple times to figure out.
  • Dread Zeppelin is a King of the Hill point capture map that starts off with a giant leap from the aforementioned spring launcher, which is a ton of fun in VR!

Speaking of VR, this game would be completely off of my radar, were it not for the VR aspect of the game. For review, I did play a few rounds of the “flat game” version of the game, and whereas the framerate was super smooth and the graphics very sharp and clean, it had little appeal. The PSVR version of the game, on the other hand, adds a whole new level of experience to the multiplayer first person shooter game. I’ve played other VR games that were converted to VR after the fact, but it makes all the difference that the game was designed for VR from the ground up. I look forward to more games like this, and from this developer.

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All of that being said, this game is in beta. I won’t spend too much time laying out the faults of the game and the lack of overall “polish” of this game. I don’t expect this game to be Overwatch or Call of Duty when it comes to multiplayer matches. Networking issues and lag created multiple events of players jumping/teleporting from one location to another, or taking damage long after the shots hit, or not taking any damage at all even though being directly hit. I found that targeting “bot” opponents not affected by networking was the best course of action.

Unlike other PSVR multi-player online games, there was always a game going, even if half populated by bots. I never had to wait more than a minute or two to get into a game. At times, it did seem that people were playing as a team, but most of the time, it was just mindless runnnig around and soloing. I would have like to have had voice chat built in, or at least a system of communication by emotes. I hope that over time, the community builds for this game and see some teamwork and strategy.

The control scheme varies from full analog controls with head aiming to VR comfort modes that “snap” turn to help reduce nausea. For the review, I played with full analog controls for maximum immersiveness. If you are playing this game for the first time, start off in the “playground” mode to get a feel for the weapons, spring jumps, zip lines, crate abilities, and tanks. The framerate and hit-detection in the playground mode are great, and really show the potential of what’s to come.

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Overall, I think World War Toons is a great game for the price (hey, it’s free!), without suffering from being a pay-to-win experience like other games of this type. Crates can be bought with in-game coin currency or purchased credits called “loonies”. Upgrades come in the form of cosmetic modifications like hats and skins, and upgrades to weapon reload, ammo capacity, and movement speed.

If you haven’t tried World War Toons out yet, I advise you to at least give it a download and a few rounds of multiplayer. That being said, be aware that some aspects of the game like the character select screen in VR can be confusing and frustrating. Sometimes, the game makes you try and fit a “puzzle piece” into a puzzle to start playing, but you have to look-move the piece somewhere outside of the puzzle to start. Also, player death can be confusing, as often you will die for no apparent reason, and becoming a disembodied “angel” before returning to the character select screen is a weird choice.

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Immersion 7/10

The playground is super smooth, but the multiplayer has some glitchy issues.

Vision 5/10

Nothing new to see here in gameplay. It’s obvious that this games roots are like Call of Duty and Team Fotress.

Graphics 7/10

The cartoony graphic style and animations are great. At this point with the PS4 and PSVR, you can’t ask for much more.

Sound 5/10

I never felt like sounds were distant or near like in games like Overwatch. ¬†On occasion, the sound of planes flying overhead were convincing. The character’s voicelines were cute at times, but the game just sounded “foreign”.

Gameplay 6/10

I liked shooting the bots more than the people, because I knew if I shot them, it was going to hit. At times, my cursor had an “x” on it instead of a regular reticle, and it had no rhyme or reason as to why. I loved that this was a FPS in VR, but I didn’t have as much fun as I do with similar “flat” games.

Replay Value 7/10

The sense of progression will keep many players coming back. You want to level up your guns and characters, and get enough coins for that next crate. As the game updates and patches, I’m sure I will be returning to this game plenty in 2017.

Price to Worth 8/10

It’s free, but it could still be better. I look foward to seeing what this game has to offer once out of beta.

Options for comfort 10/10

I like that they give full FPS controls to this. The head aiming option is awesome, and changes the face of VR first person shooters.

Loading Times 6/10

The matches don’t take long to start, but I think that it’s mostly because they are often populated by bots (you can tell it’s a bot by “punny” names.

Polish 4/10

It’s a free online game. I’m sure new maps, skins, and modes will be added to keep it fresh. The character select screens are atrocious, and other issues with matchmaking, and frequent games ending unexpectedly hold it back.

Pro support?: Yes

The PS4 Pro does improve the graphics and framerate. It’s a pretty game.

Final score 65/100


RIGS MCL: Most Complete Launch Title

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When jumping into RIGS for the first time, the introduction
commences; a beautiful showcase of giant machines piloted by
short, jockey-like characters fly passed you. All whilst the
announcer shoutcasts a hypothetical game, “The crowd goes wild!”.
Even the introduction had my heart pounding… up close the RIGS
possess a beautiful glossy paint job; this shows off how well
Guerrilla Cambridge Games can use up as much power from the
console as possible, just like they did with Killzone Mercenaries on
the PlayStation Vita. After the introduction and the obligatory
health warnings, you begin the tutorial. The tutorial goes a little
too slow for my taste, but it gets the job done well. While playing
through the tutorial you might wonder, “Why is my peripheral
vision blocked?” This is a comfort setting that helps some people
more prone to motion-sickness to better withstand the fast paced,
in-your-face action of this game. After I turned off the default
Dynamic Mask Visor setting, I personally was far more happy

VR: a new Medium

RIGS does have some shortcomings and as I review this game I
understand that I will overlook all of them for the idea of what a
future RIGS game would be. The areas most criticality noted upon
in RIGS are the loading times and overused animations (when
going from match to match). Because the time spent it prematch
and postmatch seems to come close to the time spent in match.
This might look like quite a negative but actually it is a result of
developers being ham-stringed by Sony so make sure that no game
is “too much” for the mass markets first impression to the VR
space[1]. Sony has understandably put up many roadblocks for the
development teams to work around specifically to ensure that the
games don’t get people sick. while users get used to the tech this is
what us gamers are going to have to deal with so as a reviewer I
must try to see past these shortcomings and look into the future of
what the vision of PSVR games will be once the media is over
“Motion Sickness Madness”.

Motion Sickness What?

Motion sickness is not something I am familiar with, never have
been, probably never will. So when I was reading other reviews for
VR games most of the reviewers spend a lot of time on motion
sickness. This has no relevance in a review for a game that should
be marketed to people who have acquired VR Legs or members of
the Iron Stomach Club. As a new Medium we must define the
rules to help the VR market succeed and grow into what it can
ultimately be, a glorious virtual space where anything is possible. If
the games media doesn’t evolve we will keep seeing crippled games
that could be so much more.

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Immersion

This is the most important part of any Virtual Reality review,
without immersion VR is not virtually emulating reality. A VR
game with a low level of immersion will not only make the game
less fun but it can also give you a headache. The sense of
immersion in RIGS is prominent, putting you inside a body of a
mech jockey (these pilots are super short) when you look down and
see your body move as you move is a sight to be seen, or rather an
experience to be had. At the end of every match you are in your
teams jet and when you look out of the plane you can see the wing
over the clouds, when you stick your head outside of the glass
window you can hear the wind brushing passed your head.

The most immersive moment of RIGS was a subtle and most
impressive aspect of the arena design, it was something I didn’t
even notice until a couple of hours in; throughout most arenas the
crowd is watching you within the arena looking through the glass
cheering your team on. These spaces remind me of super expensive
skyboxes in real life sports, I wonder how much those patrons paid
to get that close to the action.

The Arena design really makes you feel like you’re in some pretty
famous places with landmarks such as the Hoover dam in Nevada.
The design is so good you actually feel like you’re there.

Offline Leagues

Throughout my playthrough of the offline division I developed a
newfound love for sports games I didn’t know I had. When
starting offline mode you start at division 3 and work your way up
to division 1 each division consists of ten matches and a
tournament sprinkled in between your league matches. The way
Guerrilla Games has set up Offline play it quickly teaches you to
tackle each game mode with different strategies, by way of play
style and your choice of RIG.

Starting offline mode you must pick a team, this is your team that
will be with you for a whole Division. What stood out to me was
the way the different team names and emblems for the teams made
me feel like the team I picked mattered, even though it doesn’t. I
had a hard time picking between The Kings and The Dragons. The
former is represented by a pharaoh emblem and the latter is
represented be a dragon that looks like it was made to look as close
to Shenron from Dragon Ball Z as they could without getting into
legal disputes. Being a huge Dragon Ball fan I picked The Dragons
but if The Kings were called The Pharaohs it would have been a
harder choice.

After choosing your team you have to hire teammates, the
teammates that you are allowed to hire depends on how famous
you are. Fame is measured by your followers and you can acquire
more followers based upon how well you do throughout the
matches. Personally I didn’t hire better teammates until halfway
through the second division because I was good enough to win
every match almost by myself. Once I needed better teammates I
quickly realized that I wasn’t as good as I thought; this only
motivated be to learn how to do advanced maneuvers to best the
harder AI.

At the end of a Division the teammates you picked are obviously
excited whilst celebrating in your teams jet. They hold up the
trophy you all have won and slam it next to you on your table
creating a sense of immersion that makes me feel like I’ve made a
difference.

The offline mode is great fun, but really its practice for online
mode where you can put your skill up against others who have won
the same trophies as you.

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Game Types

Each of the 3 game types play differently, they consist of
Powerslam, Team Takedown, and Endzone. All though the means
of victory varies the root mechanics is what you must master.
These game types heavily force the choice upon the player what
RIG type to choose.

Power Slam

Power Slams rules are reminiscent of Rocket League, that being if
Rocket League is Soccer with cars then Power Slam is basketball
with Mechs. The rules are simple, fill up your overdrive meter and
go through the basket. There are two ways to fill up your overdrive
meter, get three takedowns (kills) or pick up orbs. Mastering this
game type is all about using RIGs that can jump high and move
fast, much like basketball.

What RIGs to use?

Tempests, these are RIGS that fly! Flying RIGS make it easy to get
in the goal! The only negative is that they can be taken down the
easiest.

Mirage! All around best suited for every game type, they can
double jump and are moderately fast.

Any engineer, engineers are perfect for making sure the team gets
to where they need to go, just look at your teammates and the
engineer class will heal them, perfect when your mates ate close to
the goal but are one missile away from death.

Team Takedown

This mode is the simplest, its just team death match so go out
there and take them down!

What RIGs to use?

Sentinels, they are the tanks and can take a beating, many of their
weapons deal massive damage.
Any Vampire, after getting a takedown all health is refilled!

Endzone

Endzone is hardest to grasp and the most difficult to master. This
is American Football with Mechs. Each match starts with a
Football in the middle and your team must bring the ball to the
opponents endzone to score a touchdown. If you have the ball you
can pass it to a teammate for extra strategy with the L3 button.
This is the mode played by the most competitive because it
highlights every RIGS advantages and disadvantages, making for
surprising opportunities for teamwork.

What RIGs to use?

Hunters are the all star here as they are the quarterback, just make
sure your team has a healthy variety of different class RIGs to help
get the hunter to the endzone.

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Competitive VR Online

I can’t stress enough how fun this game is to play online with
friends, the level of teamwork you can put in to make sure your
team makes it out on top. Multiplayer is what makes RIGS a game
to have in your VR library. Simply being in this game you forget
you are in a game. Multiple times being in a RIG I forgot I was
sitting there playing a video game.

Matchmaking at launch was lackluster but after the 1.05 update
RIGs Matchmaking was streamlined with the ability to
quickmatch.

Customizations

There is so much to unlock in this game: visors, victory dances,
suits and RIGs. All of them being cosmetic except for the different
RIGs you can unlock.

Replay Value Galore

After having the PlayStation VR for over a month the only game I
keep coming back to is RIGs I have spent well over 80 hours in
RIGs the price is perfect for the amount of replay value RIGs has
to offer. Any fan of competitive shooters would love to spend their
time in this virtual reality.

TL;DR/Conclusion

All in All this game is for the people most enthusiastic about VR,
RIGs does everything right. This is my first game review because I
was sick of reading reviews that were not reviewing this game as
one of the first games in this space, other reviewers were lumping
in their flat game baggage into this new medium. If RIGS MCL is
just the beginning of greatness I cant wait for what’s next.

Immersion: 10/10

This is about how well the game tricks you into forgetting you are in a
game.
You feel like you are in a Mech, enough said.

Vision: 10/10

This is about the overall style and what the developers are trying to get
you to feel.
The vision of RIGs is prestigious, guerrilla nailed the sports star
vibes and sense of scale of a world where mechs are the pass time
of the world.

Graphics: 10/10

Is the game pretty?
Beautiful effects fully cascade you into this world and into the seat
of your very own RIG

Sound: 10/10

how is the audio quality? Is the soundtrack good?
The 3D Audio lets you know where shots are coming from and
where a RIG is coming from behind you. If you close your eyes you
could probably still play this game, unlike any other.

Gameplay: 10/10

All about gameplay mechanics, are the controls good? Is it fun?
The amount of detail put into the mechanics really blew me away. I
did not expect this much depth in a launch title of an add on to a
console.

Replay Value: 10/10

How much time can you get out of it, will you want to keep coming back
for more?
I can play this game everyday and never get enough.

Price to Worth: 10/10

VR is a new medium, some developers might try to charge more then the
title is worth.
They could have gotten away with charging $60 USD and I still
would have been happy.

Options for Comfort: 10/10

Does this game give you the ability to control the amount of motion
seen? Does it let you turn off comfort settings?
This game has many comfort options for people who are not yet
accustomed to VR and it gives you the options to turn them off,
thats all I need the options to turn them off.

Loading Times: 8/10

How much time does the game make you wait before you can start
playing?

The one thing holding it down but if you have a PS4 pro (I don’t )
it helps. Understandably this game packs a punch, the best looking
game on PSVR so far.

Need of Sequel: 10/10

Would anybody want a sequel for this game? It can go both ways
positively I will elaborate on why i give the score I give.
Give me sequel, the need of more. If this game is as good as it is I
can’t wait until more PS4 owners get their hands on a PSVR. This
is the kind of game that should get yearly releases.

Pro support?: Yes

This is a note for people who want to know, doesn’t effect the score.
Improved? That’s an understatement, when people ask me does
the PS4 Pro even matter all I have to do is get them to try RIGs
side by side and this is the only VR game that has noticeably
improved greatly.

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Final score: 98/100