For horror fans, the sci-fi curious, or merely those looking for a fun experience with friends this Halloween season, Shoreditch pop-up HYPER REALITY offers a thrilling glimpse into the future of video games and digital entertainment that you cannot afford to miss.
Using the latest in VR technology, from Valve’s HTC Vive headset to cutting-edge tetherless backpack PCs and hydraulic motion simulation chairs, Hyper-Reality offers a selection of virtual experiences that showcase both the technical capabilities of high-end VR as well as its potential as a storytelling medium.
With the immense popularity of first-person horror games in recent years, developers have been scrambling to get to grips with VR in order to push players’ resilience to jump-scares – and their resourcefulness under pressure – to the limit with both atmospheric, psychological titles as well as frantic action experiences, and both of those are represented here within Hyper Reality’s two ticket packages:
“Ashes to Horror” and “The Japanese Haunted World” (available on alternating days of the week), which entitle two players to one exploration-oriented adventure and one cooperative survival game, both lasting about 10 minutes each.
In addition, players first receive a 20 minute orientation period during which they can sample some quick non-horror titles that serve as a gentle demonstration of VR physics and movement.
If you are new to VR, nothing can prepare you for how effectively a hydraulic chair can simulate the feeling of free-falling from a mile in the air, being catapulted above a city on bungee ropes, or making you feel your stomach lurch as you go over the top of a rollercoaster before it rushes downhill. Once these technologies become more widely available, they will represent a remarkable advancement in home entertainment.
As for the games, themselves (but without wanting to spoil too much) fans of western and Asian horror alike will both find much to enjoy, from a lantern-guided sneak around a magical Japanese inn occupied by slumbering “Yokai” (breathtakingly huge creatures from Japanese mythology who loom over you within the confines of claustrophobic shoji-walled rooms, snoring noisily as you attempt to collect items from under their noses without waking them and incurring their wrath).
The Last Team, an absolutely nail-biting zombie shooter that sees you and a friend as two soldiers defending the intersection of a grimy back alley from an overwhelming onslaught of monsters as you await extraction by helicopter.
Without hyperbole, the latter is one of the most intense and adrenaline-pumping gaming challenges anyone on these shores is likely to have yet experienced, so be prepared! (Protip: don’t wear your favourite shirt. You will sweat.)
Hyper Reality runs from October 19th to November 29th. Tickets available at https://hyper-reality.io