The VR Drop: Driving a Living Metropolis

Welcome to another VR Drop where gmw3 looks at what XR videogames have been announced for the week ahead. There’s a superb collection to look forward to, from Early Access releases looking for community support to casual titles where you can sit back and relax to some virtual reality (VR) world-building.

Musical Range

Musical Range – Rockhopper Studios

First up is a rhythm action game called Musical Range, coming to Steam Early Access on Monday. This is a rhythm shooter with the rather unique mechanic of being able to bend and distort the notes after each shot. For the EA launch, Musical Range will have a selection of songs to try and achieve highscores on as well as a Freeplay Mode, shooting the notes to make your own music. Plus, there’s a custom song system where you can drop in sound files to play.

Area Man Lives – Numinous Games

This is a title gmw3 wasn’t sure would come to life, but it lives! Announced in 2020 as a reworking of Numinous Games’ much earlier Google Daydream title Untethered, Area Man Lives is part quirky radio drama and part mystery to solve, putting you in the chair of a local radio DJ. In this little bubble of radio paradise, you have to play some music, record commercials and most importantly, talk to callers and find out what’s going on and how you can help.

Little Cities

Little Cities – Purple Yonder

Developed by British indie studio Purple Yonder and published by VR powerhouse nDreams (Fracked, Phantom: Covert Ops) Little Cities is a delightful city builder coming exclusively to Meta Quest. With various archipelagoes to build on (Desert, Volcano and more), Little Cities is all about balancing the needs of residents by creating enough housing, factories and commercial properties whilst adding essentials like network coverage, power and the occasional airport. Unlike other city builders, Little Cities doesn’t bog you down with deep financial planning, keeping gameplay light with the option of hand tracking support coming in June.

Omega Pilot – Xocus

Having launched its futuristic racer Z-Race for PCVR headsets last year, Xocus is back with Omega Pilot. The developer created the entirely new Omega Pilot because Z-Race fans wanted one thing, a cockpit viewpoint, which couldn’t be done due to Z-Race’s control scheme. So now players can jump into the cockpit of these futuristic vehicles and race at ludicrous speeds through winding tubular tracks.

Omega Pilot

Afterlife VR – Split Light Studio

Now let’s finish on a VR genre that loves to scare us all, horror, with the Early Access release for Afterlife VR from Split Light Studio. Play as a young rookie cop who needs to go and investigate a mental health facility and…well, you know what happens; stepping into an insane asylum at night only amounts to one thing. There are puzzles, you have telekinetic abilities and shit is going to jump out at you. So bring a flashlight and a spare pair of pants.