‘Hubris’ demonstrates just how far VR gaming has come

Hubris, a VR shooter-adventure from Cyborn, looks so good that it manages to make crash landing on an alien planet seem appealing. You’d be forgiven for gripping your controllers a little tightly as you plummeted from the stars, but all of that smoke, fear and fire is worth it for your first glimpse at the Twin planet system.

Hubris cleverly builds up this reveal by hiding it behind a plain, industrial-looking tutorial on board a space ship. It’s all tight corridors and two-tone metals, a far cry from the sweeping blue skies, rocky crags and pristine waters you’re about to get intimately familiar with. As a result, the sudden crash that switches you between the two is jaw-dropping: although your surviving pilot is keen to get things moving, it’s hard not to dawdle in the wreckage and soak in every detail. Hubris‘ setting is gorgeous, and benefits immensely from being in VR – because you feel physically there, turning your head to soak in the atmosphere is an absorbing experience that holds its own with the open-world reveals of Fire Ring spirit Breath Of The Wild.

Hubris. Credit: Cyborn BV

Once you pull yourself away from stargazing (although you’ll never manage that completely), it’s time to finally get to work. You’re here to look for a missing agent on behalf of your employer, and the Twin planet system isn’t the easiest place to navigate. Leaping from one rocky outcrop to another means physically reaching your hands out to grasp the edge and pull yourself up; while scaling a cliff face requires actually climbing it – using one hand for purchase while the other grabs a higher spot and repeating that until your feet are back on the ground. If you mess that up – say, you forgot to keep holding on while you reach up – you’re in for a nasty fall. Hubris makes good use of VR’s capabilities, and ensures you feel physically involved at every point of your adventure.

It’s not just the world that’s against you – the Twin planets’ alien denizens aren’t thrilled to have another human kicking about their home, and it’s not long before you’re putting your energy blaster to work. Shooting in Hubris is thrilling – aiming down the iron sights to land the perfect shot is fluid and rewarding, but a frantic hip-fire burst will still make short work of anything that gets too close. Reloading your weapon is carried out smoothly, meaning there’s no awkward jiggling or finicking around to stay in the action.

Hubris.  Credit: Cyborn BV
Hubris. Credit: Cyborn BV

However, all of this action means Hubris is a difficult play for anyone whose stomachs don’t agree with VR. It’s through no fault of Hubrisbut the adventure’s dizzying heights and constant movement make for poor companions to motion sickness.

That being said, if you’re comfortable with VR, Hubris should be at the very top of your list to pick up when it launches later this year. Cyborn has made full use of VR’s strengths as a tool for immersion, and it’s difficult to explain just how good Hubris looks until you’re strapped up and gawping at yourself.

While an exact date hasn’t been announced, Hubris is set to launch in 2022 for PlayStation VR, Steam VR and Oculus.

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