I’m sat alone at my security desk, while in the corridors outside a group of animatronics animals is hell-bent on killing me.
My only chance to survive the night is to either activate two metal doors, or turn on the lights to frighten the metal monsters away; but that won’t work for long because the power is limited, which means the lights turn back off after a few seconds and the doors re-open. All I can do is monitor various camera views on a flickering screen and await my impending doom.
That’s the simple premise behind One Night at Freddy’s, an accurate recreation of the classic game Five Nights at Freddy’s, which launched to critical acclaim during the summer of 2014. This version of the game has been developed by Chris C, using Unity 4 Pro. It only features one night from the original game, but it’s a faithful recreation down to the tiniest detail, including every Easter egg, haunting and glitches. Why bother to recreate the original game using the Unity engine? To add Oculus Rift support and make the game even scarier. Which is quite an ambition, because Five Nights was already a terrifying game. It’s use of sound and timing meant players were listening to every clang and pin drop, all the while waiting for the mechanical monsters to burst into the room and tear them to pieces. It is possible to survive the night, but you’ll need to frantically monitor the correct camera and shut the right door at just the right moment. Good luck with that.
So how does the game play on the Oculus Rift? It’s brilliant. The entire game takes place from a fixed point in space, you’re unlikely to encounter motion sickness. It boots in DirectToRift mode and includes 3D menus for toggling the difficulty settings, and the controls take advantage of head-tracking to let you aim and select items. If anything, the game is easier to play on the Oculus Rift, because your head can be used to look around leaving the mouse free to select cameras. Additionally, the game works on both the DK1 and DK2 headsets, so all Rift gamers can give it a try.
Graphically there’s much to impress. Lightning is moody, textures are detailed and the mechanical animals that appear on-camera (and in person) are genuinely scary. something about their manic eyes and pointy metal teeth that pieces the soul. Interestingly, the camera views are rendered in 3D, which works well but might be unrealistic given most, if not all security cameras film in 2D.
This is definitely a game worth trying out on your Oculus Rift. It might be frightening, but the attention to detail to fantastic and you’ll have plenty of fun trying to work out how to avoid the teeth and claws of the robotic demons that roam the halls outside. This is a game where the action is toned down while the atmosphere and dread is ramped up to panic-inducing levels. All in sweet stereoscopic virtual reality.