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We play Darkfield VR alpha 4.6a

The Oculus Rift is perfect for cockpit-based warfare in outer-space, which is why we’re looking forward to Darkfield VR so much.

This promising title is currently deep in development by three friends, and promises to let players battle each other in deep space, play cooperatively against AI foes and achieve a number of mission objectives together. Recently, the team released alpha version 4.6a, which fixes a handful of important bugs (such as a jittering cockpit), added destructible asteroids, improved the performance and more. We couldn’t help but take a look and see how the games development is coming along…

Immediately it’s clear that a lot of work has gone into the games presentation. Players start on the deck of a vast hanger, and in version 4.6a extra lighting, props and detail has been added that helps to bring the spaceship to life. Scattered around the deck are monitors that can be used to access the in-game menu – a helpful way of changing settings or creating a new game while still using the Oculus Rift headset. Alternatively, players can hop into one of the numerous spaceships waiting on the hanger deck. Inside, the cockpit has been improved with a real-time 3D radar and textures that help add to the immersion.

Start a game and the familiar boot sequence begins, which thrusts the players ship into outer-space where the battle rages on. Station 34, the games default map, now includes destructible asteroids that explode after a few hits, and there’s a more detailed larger asteroid that can be flown through (with a bit of care and attention). In-game action remains the same, with the ability to lock onto a target and fire a battery of missiles their way, or instead shoot lasers indiscriminately at friend or foe. Flying through space is just as satisfying, as is the head tracking ability which lets you track a target independently of the ships direction.

There are still some obvious features that are missing, such as cockpit textures in some of the ships, additional maps and gameplay modes, but the team is making great progress and we’re enjoying seeing the game come to life over time.

You can pre-order Darkfield VR and play this latest alpha release today by heading over to the games official website. The Early Access Tier gets you access to all alpha and beta releases, plus the final game for $15.

Here’s the full change log for version 4.6a:

Performance:

  • Primary Weapon now moves with Oculus Look Direction
  • [4.6a] Performance Fix for Graphic Cards with less than 1.5GB VRAM

Graphical:

  • Jitter Fix
  • Skybox Seams not visible anymore
  • Reworked Particle Effects
  • Specular Highlights on Windscreens
  • Textured Cockpits

Gameplay:

  • New Target Lock System: press and hold, look at desired target and release key
  • Radar shows selected Target
  • Reworked Map “Station 34”
  • Destructible Asteroids

UI:

  • Holographic Displays in all Ships
  • Menu in Hangar now on Screens and in Ships

Misc:

  • New Camera Shaking System
  • Body inside Hangar
  • Positional Tracking via TrackIR for Oculus Rift DK1
  • Server Browser uses Nat Punchtrough