Sniper Elite VR Made Me Feel Really Dang Good at Being a Sniper
Sniper Elite VR puts the rewarding gunplay of the series in your hands.
Going into VR demos, I’m always a bit apprehensive. Right off the bat, I think that most people who play video games pretty frequently can tell whether or not a VR game resonates with them. Take Beat Saber, for instance. It’s consistently one of the top-selling VR games across all headsets and that’s because it feels really great and satisfying to play. Now, Rebellion is hoping to find the formula that makes a Sniper Elite game work in VR. Thankfully, Sniper Elite VR takes little to no time at all getting you into the act of sniping your way through mobs of enemies.
The demo I played at E3 had me defending a large alleyway from German infiltrators. As the sniper, you’re placed above ground giving you optimal vision over your enemies. I’m not sure if Sniper Elite VR will offer ground-level combat, but I can say with somewhat confident that the experience will always be more ideal when you’ve got the high ground.
Movement feels fluid enough and very much like Killing Floor VR, a game I reviewed last year. Throughout the area you run around in, you can find ammo crates so you’ll be able to restock on the fly. Enemies come in quick succession so you’ll always need to be either shooting or looting.
The shooting itself feels really good. Poking your head out of corners as you aim down the sight is something straight out of a war film. Landing shots feels incredibly rewarding, and of course, the staple Sniper Elite slow-motion camera is included in all of its gory glory. It never tries taking itself too seriously, giving the game a fun arcadey feel that’s less intense than the core Sniper Elite games. I think this works in short bursts of gameplay. As is the state of VR right now, it really works to craft a game around this idea of short play sessions. My level lasted about five minutes and I was deeply satisfied and eager to run through it again while attempting to improve my previous score in the process.
Any issues I encountered in Sniper Elite VR could be quickly fixed by recalibrating my controllers and headset. I wasn’t too surprised as the PS VR often has the most issues due in part to the way it works with the single PlayStation Camera. I can’t fault Rebellion too hard on this one as it’s something I’ve experienced with nearly every game I played. However, it is good to know that whether you have an Oculus Rift or a PS VR your experience will be widely the same. So kudos to Rebellion in that regard.
As previously mentioned, you do get a secondary weapon along with a sniper rifle. In this particular demo, it was an MP40. I could see the other guns being fun to use if any levels put you on ground-level. Getting overwhelmed and having to go all out with a machine gun does sound like a lot of fun. However, I didn’t find myself using it much at all in the demo, and with ammo crates in short reach of me, I didn’t ever really run out of the ammo I needed in my sniper.
While my demo was brief, it did wash away any doubt I had for Sniper Elite VR. The team at Rebellion seems very capable in making a game that brings you face first into an arcade-style Second World War shooter. I’ll certainly be eager to try it once it does release.
Sniper Elite VR has no release date as of right now but it will be coming to PS VR, Oculus Rift, and HTC Vive.