Ever wanted to pilot a chopper while blasting ground targets to smithereens? Now you can, with Combat Helicopter VR for the Oculus Rift.
Currently in development, an alpha version was yesterday released on The Rift Arcade Market that tasks players with flying a helicopter across vast landscapes before destroying ground-based targets with either machine gun fire or rocket launchers. It’s fantastic fun to play thanks to some wonderful Oculus Rift compatibility that enables you to track targets with your head and experience the thrills of sitting in a virtual cockpit.
At the start of the game you’re presented with a 3D hanger that acts as the games menu. From here you can choose a mission by simply pointing your head towards it, then start the game where’ll be promptly dropped into the pilot seat of an attack helicopter. Graphically the game is basic, with low polygon models and texture work that still needs some work, but there’s a plus side that, because the game features some truly vast landscapes that stretch out to the horizon before continuing further behind mountains and hillsides; and it runs buttery smooth on nearly any hardware set-up. As a result the sense of presence is high; you really do feel as though you’re sitting at the controls of a helicopter.
Controlling the game is easy if using the Xbox controller, with vertical movement controlled by the left thumbstick and directional movement via the right; firing is done by simply pulling the triggers on the back of the controller. It won’t be long until you’ve mastered the art of taking of and flying, whereby you can then tackle aggressive foes in later missions who dot the virtual landscape. Dodging incoming fire while aiming at targets is surprisingly difficult in a helicopter, so you’ll often find yourself heading upwards in a circle-like pattern before spiralling back down in a movement pattern that’s fun to experience but probably ridiculous to watch. Be warned that you’re probably going to be killed a few times before each combat mission is successfully completed, and that the game has an addictive nature that makes it hard to quit.
Flight simulations are the type of game that work perfectly in VR. After all, you’re sitting stationary in a moving object, and via the use of head-tracking you can follow fellow aircraft through the sky without fighting with complicated controls. Additionally, it makes spotting enemy targets a breeze, because you can simply follow them on the ground with your head. It feels natural, exciting and makes aerial combat easier than ever before. As a result, we highly recommend checking Combat Helicopter VR out. Sure, the graphics are basic, but it’s a blast to play and runs smoothly on any Windows hardware. You can download it today from The Rift Arcade Market today by clicking this link. We very much look forward to seeing the game progress more over the coming months, and will let you know of any further developments.