For the longest time, the unbeatable weapon of choice for an arcade rail shooter experience was the “light gun” - a perfect marriage of cathode ray tubes and circuit boards allowing us to blow our enemies away with sadistic bliss on oversized monitors.
Of course, all things come to an end, and VR looks like the next logical step to take our vicarious thirst for action to another level. Step in Mortal Blitz – a PlayStation VR shooter developed by Skonec Entertainment.
Utilising the unique functionality offered by PSVR, the developers have gone all out to deliver an immersive experience to bridge that gap from being in-front of the screen, to being in-front of the action.
Mortal Blitz places you in the role of a resistance fighter in a world where human kind has been subjugated by a brutal regime of mechanised Androids. It will come down to you and your companions to restore the peace and harmony that once existed – with a little explosive persuasion, naturally.
Rapid gameplay and unique terrain interaction take center stage as you and your comrades take down viscous enemies like the Ghost (a fire breathing monstrosity that attacks from a distance) and the Torment (a bat like creature that will reign terror from above).
We spoke with the developers at Skonec for an even more in depth look at Mortal Blitz.
What do you think your game offers that you can’t get from any other title on the App Store?
We tried to meld the spectacular battles of arcade rail shooters with multi-interactive VR factors for an optimal outcome. We have implemented many features that exemplify this, such as:
- Intense gunfights with weapons on both hands
- Interaction with objects using the main characters' telekinesis
- Stylish battles, such as being able to lift enemies up into the air and shoot them
- Cover/stealth system where the player can move his/her physical body to evade enemies
What challenges did you face during development, and how did you overcome them?
The biggest obstacle for creating a VR game was to provide a game environment without VR sickness/vertigo. The main reason VR sickness occurs in most VR environments is because there is a discrepancy in the HMD screen view and the player's movements. To solve this, we needed to implement realistic human behaviours and habits into the game as much as the hardware would allow us to. For example, when bullets and grenades are flying through the air, most people will try to take cover or throw the grenades back at the enemies. So we tried to implement as many such behaviours as the hardware performance could manage. The positional tracking technology was great in tracking the player's hand position, which also increased synchronicity in VR environments and reduced VR sickness.What were your inspirations for making the game?
When you see people playing arcade rail shooter games, there are always some who insert double the amount of coins and try to use both guns, one in each hand. Mortal Blitz was inspired by those people and their enthusiasm. We believe double guns means double awesomeness, and that is why those players inserted double the amount of coins. For sheer awesomeness.
Think about it: what if you were given the power to decimate your foes with double guns, just like in movies such as The Matrix or Equilibrium? And if that happens in a super-immersive VR environment, that would be epic and cathartic at the same time.
Which part of the game are you personally the most proud of and why?
Some people have commented that Mortal Blitz is 'Bandai Namco's Time Crisis in VR', and we were incredibly proud and honoured by such comparisons. In fact, Skonec Entertainment has actually co-developed many rail shooter games, such as Sega's Operation G.H.O.S.T and more. We've also released Teratoma: The Last Rebellion, an early version/concept of Mortal Blitz, in China through a famous arcade game publisher, Wahlap. We do have a lot of experience in these types of shooters, and are glad that our goals and efforts are being recognized.
Do you have anything planned in terms of future updates for the game and, if so, can you give us any details of what these might include?
Many players are sending us feedback via communities and are also very interested in future updates. To improve the game, we are planning to add extra missions and game modes. We hope you will follow our next updates with great excitement and fun!