Imagine what would happen if you took a half season of The Walking Dead TV show mashed it together with deus ex and drizzled it with the best aspects of a modern vr game. What you might end up with is a game. That’S oppressively tense and brutal, but also relentlessly tugging you on to explore every corner of its iconic post-apocalyptic world. What you might end up with is the Walking Dead, saints and sinners, and it absolutely nails it while Telltale’s The Walking Dead series accomplished some truly great feats of cinematic storytelling and meaningful decision making in its hostile and zombie riddled world. It never gave you free rein to do whatever you wanted, something that, like human brains, the Walking Dead fans have craved since the very beginning, The Walking Dead, saints and sinners, on the other hand, scratches that edge with the Grace and confidence of a well-lubricated bowie knife.
There’S nothing wrong with wanting to live, free and kill zombies or Walker’s at your own leisure and you’ve. Never gotten to do it like this. This or this you spend it’s roughly 15 to 18 hour Campaign playing as the tourist, a storied survivor, who seems to be immune to the fictional virus. That makes everybody a little more biting in The Walking Dead universe.
Most of the Earth’s population is either dead or Walking Dead and humanity’s drive towards culture and society are all but replaced by rampant survivalism. The tourist is primarily a shelf for you to insert your own personality into, but with decent voice. Acting that gives life to each dialogue option just another survivor, much like Commander Shepard in the Mass Effect series. After picking up a rumor about a limitless hotbed of supplies called the reserve, you meet with your old buddy ornery and head out into the sunken remains of a New Orleans that split into several open ended zones full of resources to find in different factions fighting for Control the map can feel a little nondescript or even claustrophobic at times, but it’s a delight to discover its alternate entry ways and secrets, though the story can sometimes feel pretty thin between long periods of exploring looting, killing and crafting. It’S refreshing that you get to define who you are through your own decisions in a setting.
That’S is meticulously detailed and open-ended as this you weren’t exactly polite. The last time we had a chat while saints and sinners isn’t exactly the first of its kind. This caliber of storytelling reaches a height that VR games have otherwise yet to achieve central to the tension of saints and sinners. Is that you only get so much time each day to do things before the cities bells are rung and the streets flood with ravenous corpses.
Once you go to sleep, the number of undead you encounter the following day increases. This, creates a compelling risk, reward choice between pushing your luck, past dark or playing it safe at the cost of worse odds tomorrow, driving the tension of the entire game. That dilemma would be perfectly manageable, if not for the fact that you only have a limited amount of inventory space.
You also have to continue crafting or finding new weapons, as your old ones fall apart. That forces you to make each swing in each shot count and since you have to actually swing and a with your real-world appendages, saints and sinners becomes the perfect storm for adrenaline junkies. Luckily, the inventory management is intuitive and feels great picking up items and placing them into your backpack is as simple as throwing them over your shoulder and to access them again. You simply grab the pack off your back and pull items out of there neatly arranged slots.
Meanwhile, weapons can be holstered in convenient slots on your waist and back while your journal and flashlight fits snugly on your chest. It’S a for more interactive example of inventory management than simply tapping on a menu screen. Limited stamina is also a worry running out, makes you slow and unable to swing, aim or run away, meaning it’s all the more critical to land each and every blow with finesse.
Likewise, having a strong weapon or beefed up stamina pool makes you feel satisfyingly powerful, but never so much that you let your guard down keeping combat engaging, even as you get stronger if you do die to the shambling hordes you’re forced to respawn at the start of The map, while the dayz clock, is still ticking, and you only get one chance to reclaim your inventory before it’s gone forever. This mixed with the fact that your health and stamina pools are decreased when you die is a perfect formula for some of the most terrifying moments you can have in a VR headset, but that terror is met with an equal amount of satisfaction. If you can make it out with your loot, it is disappointing. The progression is pretty linear, with only a few tech trees to branch out in and no mutual exclusivity between them.
There’S nothing stopping you from unlocking every possible upgrade at the crafting stations, in short order. Just as long as you can find the right components by scrapping items you find in the world similar to fallout 4 using the newfound upgrades is fun and there are some recipes that you have to find out when the hidden nooks and crannies of the world. But there’s no sense of personalizing your tourist beyond that The Walking Dead, saints and sinners is a noteworthy step forward for vr gaming, proving that a deus ex, like action RPG, can feel right at home in a headset. Every element clearly has a level of thought and care behind it: swirling survival, horror and role-playing staples together with nuance, even though character customization can feel limited in the story. A bit short developer, skydance Interactive, is off to an excellent start for more on the ever-growing world of VR games, check out our reviews of ass cards, wrath or Bone works and for everything else, VR or otherwise. Keep it right here on IGN