Turn Based Strategy. When you hear or see these words, what are some of first things that come to your mind? For me, I always like to think about the placement and movement of my forces and how I am going to out think and out maneuver the enemy. It’s quite of a cat and mouse game if you will. But does Developers and Publishers Hoplite Research, Funbox Media, and Steel Wool Studios bring the strategy of war? Let’s find out with QUAR: INFERNAL MACHINES for the PlayStation VR.
So what is QUAR: INFERNAL MACHINES about what is it that you really do? Based in the world of Alwyd, you must strategize your plan of attack as you command your cavalry, send in the force of your armored tractors, have your soldiers help catch the enemy off guard as well as making sure your officers are safe so that they can call in air strikes.
So before heading into battle you will want to decide if you want to go in with both Move controllers or go in with the DualShock 4 controller. I for one, found it easier to use the DualShock 4 controller as things seemed to go along more smoothly. We will get to more in this in a minute, but again, for me, I went with the DualShock 4 controller, but you may find that both Move controllers work for you. I will say that before you jump right into war, take a little bit of time to get used to the button lay out as this will come in handy and might help making your time with QUAR: INFERNAL MACHINES the most enjoyable it can.
The one thing you might notice from the start is that VR is not turned on by default and if you don’t want to play it in VR, you don’t have to. But when you do turn it on, going from flat screen to actually being the world of Alwyd is a big difference. It feels like you are at this camp and being able to see the different units do what they do is like someone turned on a light switch from dark to light. So, if you can, play in this in VR.
But this is where I did run into a little problem when I tried to use the Move controllers in VR. I am not sure what it was, but there were times where it seems the height was off as I was either too high as the action was almost like ants on the ground or I was right there on level (which is an awesome view to be at) and it just seemed, for me, that controlling the height with the Move controllers did not work as well as when I switched over to just using the DualShock 4 controller. Using the R1 and right thumbstick just made the heights easier to adjust.
Being as QUAR: INFERNAL MACHINES is a turned based strategy game, you will need to end each of your turns. So depending on where you are on the battlefield, your troops will move and you want to make sure you are in a good spot to see the action. So remember this little tip. Use the left thumbstick to navigate and use the right thumbstick for the rotation of the direction you will want to face followed by R2 to teleport in that spot. As long as you remember that, the rest should be smooth sailing. That is unless the enemy is stronger because you didn’t pick enough of your troops before you started the mission and then feel guilty because the ones that you felt would win the battle got killed off because of your poor selection to begin with. So select wisely and select all that you can before starting.
When it’s your turn to move your group of troops, an area lights up indicating how far you can move that group. Depending on if you are in range of the enemy, you can choose if you would like to do a normal attack, special attack, or just end your turn. Sometimes the attack will come up with misses while others can come up with suppresses and hits. I will say that having ground troops try and attack a tractor with a normal attack does not do as well as a job. I mean it is armor after all.
Each of your groups have to go through each of its turns in order for another group, including tractors, to get their turn again. So depending on how many of your groups and the enemy groups there are, can determine how long the battle may be. And if you have only a few soldiers and the enemy has armored tractors you may find hiding behind a building to be safe, but it can take longer for the battle to end. So again, plan and strategize to the best of your ability. Depending on the mission, you may either need to take out all the enemies or try and capture a flag. And I really like some of the level layouts and I think my favorite might be having to go through the woods to have a battle.
Between missions, you are able to upgrade your buildings to help win the battles. Do you want stronger and better tractors? Then you need to upgrade the mechanic’s bay. Do you find that your soldiers could use a moral boost? Then you might want to upgrade the mess hall and when you have better food, that helps with the moral, which in turn helps for happier troops. But don’t forget about the hanger as you never know when you might want to call in that air strike that will hopefully win the mission for you.
Sound wise, some may find the music on the repetitive side, but I enjoyed the old time war music and ever so often hearing the voices of my troops as they called out. It just some how made me feel like we were all in this together. Looking at the graphics, when you are on level, it’s nice to see the detail up close. When you are higher above the ground, still being able to make out when your troops are at base and you see some of them doing jumping jacks or any of their normal activities, you can still make things out which is a plus.
There are a few things that I wish was included. First, I would love to be able to just move around freely. I get the whole teleportation aspect, but I want to be able to move with ease on the level of my troops and go into war together. Second, after each of your turns, the screen will blink which some may get bothered by it. After a few moments, I didn’t even pay it any attention. I just wonder if there could be an option for those that would like to have that turned could be added? And finally, I would love to see multiplayer get added with leaderboards. It would be fun to go in and battle it out with your friends or even have it cross play with PCVR and just have some fun.
QUAR: Internal Machines brings some single player turn based strategy to the PlayStation VR table and even within an alternative world can show how things may be difficult for some, but not nearly as those that help fight for the freedom.
QUAR: INTERNAL MACHINES is out now. A review copy was provided. To learn more about Hoplite Research, please visit their site. To learn more about Funbox Media, please visit their site and make sure you like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter. To learn more about Steel Wool Studios, please visit their site and make sure you like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.