Ever since watching Get Ready Player One, I have been fascinated with the concept of virtual reality. It continues to soar in popularity and now I can definitely see why.
I was invited by LovePopUpsLondon to review Huxley, a VR escape game ran by Omescape, situated in Aldgate, London.
WHAT IS OMESCAPE?
Omescape is the UK’s premier escape room game, being global leaders since 2012, with over 30 branches across Asia, Europe, America, and Australia. Their aim is to design and create the world’s best escape game experience, with players working as a team to explore new worlds, find clues, and solve puzzles against the clock. Their escape games are sure to boggle your mind with an experience full of thrill and adventure. With movie-like sets, professionally designed puzzles, high tech props and automation, Omescape bring the Live Escape Game to a whole new level.
Their escape rooms are suitable for players over the age of 12, with under 16’s needing to be accompanied by an adult.
Upon arrival, we were told a bit about the game, and stepped into a huge empty room which would be our play area for the hour. We were equipped with the latest portable mobile VR technology giving us a full 360-degree VR immersion into the mission, without cables or wires that could trip us up. We were each provided with a MSI VR one Backpack, which is the power unit for the game, a HTC Vive Pro, which is the latest VR headset on market today, with high resolution and 360-degree immersion, Bose noise cancelling headphones, and finally our controllers. The controllers had a leaver attached to them for gripping objects inside the game and the use of microphones allowed us to communicate with one another easily.
I have taken part in a very simple VR game at a ski event last winter which required me to sit in a chair with a hand-held console and ‘ski’ down the slopes. Although this was a cool concept, it was nowhere near as advanced as Omescape’s newest experience, which allows you to physically walk around inside of the game.
So what is the storyline? It is the year 3007 AD and mankind have been replaced by machines. Located on a space station orbiting the Earth, you are the last remaining survivors of humanity and have a final mission to help a friendly robot named HUXLEY reverse the Apocalypse in 44 minutes or less.
As soon as the game began, we were all blown away with how incredibly realistic and convincing it was. The world was big and open, and you genuinely felt like you had been transported into an alternate reality.
As this was an escape game, there were a variety of puzzles and challenges that needed completing, including directing laser beams, shooting targets, navigating our way through mazes, and solving problems.
I wouldn’t say the puzzles were exceptionally difficult (apart from a very confusing maze!), but that definitely wasn’t a bad thing as the whole concept is fantastic and means the game is suitable for all levels. We managed to escape with 3 mins 50 secs left on the clock.
The 3D aspect is what I found most incredible. An example was when I entered a lift inside the game and moved to the second floor. I was looking over the balcony in the game and could see my fellow teammates working below me on the ground floor. In reality, I was actually staring at the ground, with my team mates right beside me looking up to the ceiling to communicate!
There was a bonus round at the end of the game which consisted of hot air balloons rising into the sky that we needed to pop with bows and arrows. It was surprisingly difficult to put the arrow into the cross bow but once in, the shooting was a lot of fun. Luckily,we all had some practice of archery when we reviewed Archery Fit!
It’s crazy to think that we have reached a level where we can create our own alternative world. I would love to come back after a full day at work, put on a VR headset, and have an hour at the beach! As technology advances, I wouldn’t be surprised if in the future, you could create a world with a hologram of a loved one so that even when they passed away you could visit them. Maybe you could have jobs within the game,earn a salary, meet new people and create an entirely new reality – the potential is limitless!
Not only is this an incredibly unique and fun activity to do in London, it is also perfect for work team building days and birthday parties. I would definitely recommend Omescape, and I look forward to seeing where virtual reality goes in the future.
For more info on Omescape’s virtual reality games, check out their website: Omescape
* I received complimentary tickets to review this experience . Views are my own.