Moss is a Puzzle VR adventure game developed by Polyarc. Available for PS4 and PC, Moss is primarily based on puzzle solving. The game starts out with the player reading a book that transports the player to a fantasy world within the book that unfolds as the story is read.
The player finds a small mouse named Quill, and the game revolves around finding Quill’s captured uncle. The player then controls Quill, enabling her to fight monsters and other nasty creatures that lurk in the darkness. The player can also interact with different parts of the map. Using this ability, the player can move stairs and other objects to aid Quill to the next area. With VR in combination with the control of Quill, the player is seen at an angle of a storyteller. This makes the player feel as if he or she were in the story itself, a part of the story, not just the player. This key aspect of Moss sets it apart from other games, as the game makes you feel as if you were supposed to be in the world of Moss as if you belonged there all this time.
The player models in Moss are also astounding, the mix between clean and artsy cartoonish clashes very well with the overall message and tone of the game. With this said each level is created with detail, every corner is put into account for, and even the background is well created. With good eyes, the player can spot details that can help them achieve the full 100% completion. These hidden objects are only found with keen eyes and are identifiable with the help of movement in VR.
The player is seen in the game as a flying orb, helping Quill out with various puzzles and monster battles. The use of VR in Moss enables the player to have a full-on experience. With a VR headset, the player is able to be flexible with what the player can see. Even with the overhead angle locked to, the player still has options to adjust their viewing area. With VR the player is able to take on the scenes with full vision as well as slightly adjusting their position to see different parts of the level. Moss is an immersive game, similar to a fantasy book. The availability of VR helps the player feel like they’re inside the game or in this case, the book which they are reading from. Furthermore, the VR enables the player to increase the range of their view. Since there are some hidden objects in Moss, the player must adjust their positions to notice these small differences. These easter eggs are a bonus with the VR, as it forces players to lurk around and find hidden objects with their own bodies and range of motion.
The reviews on Moss VR have been astounding. With mostly positive reviews on steam, players agree that the mix between the VR and 3d platforming is a good combination in conjunction with an interesting storyline. Players on Metacritic gave it an 85, with similar remarks to those on steam. Again players agreed on the interesting 3d platform mix with the VR. Players also said that the game made them feel as if they were in the game itself as if they were the ones truly apart of the story. Polygon gave Moss a solid 9, stating how Moss was an extremely immersive title, filled with action and great controls. The character of Quill was so spectacular that the article of Polygons review on Moss states, “By the game’s end, I had decided I would do anything for Quill. I would die for her”. This statement shows how Quill as the main character affects the hearts of many. Making her a loveable character to work with.
Available for both the PS4 and PC, Moss does miss out on the potential market of Microsoft’s XBOX but will lure players into buying the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation VR if they’re willing to spend the money for Moss. As a near-exclusive title, SONY is able to leverage players into buying their product. Moss is an example of this, with great exclusive titles brings the interest of players, needless to say, Moss is definitely on this list of great exclusive titles. With a one of a kind genre in storytelling, Moss sets the bar for further development in storytelling VR games. In the future with increasing popularity and funding, storytelling games like Moss may become a home staple, instead of a hidden gem in a swirl of games.
Overall Moss VR is an extremely immersive VR game, combining different aspects of storytelling and hack and slash together to form a highly rated product. Moss stands as a stepping stone for the genres and game after it. It shows how a small genre can be one of the most impactful to the VR scene. In the future, games just like Moss may arise and increase the popularity of VR and the genre itself. This could lead to greater benefits for both consumer and producer alike. Moss VR will stand as an accomplishment and first step in a journey through storytelling VR.