Have you ever thought about what would happen if the human race had to set out for a new destination, one that hopefully, could help keep the human race alive and going for generations to come? Does Developer Baobab Studios show us what it would be like to be stranded on alien world wondering what would happen next? Let’s find out with Bonfire for the PlayStation VR.
In Bonfire, you play as a Space Scout named Space Scout 817. Your mission is simple, to see if there is a new home out for the human race to survive. So before you begin, you must decide, Dualshock 4 or Move controllers. If you have the Move controllers, you do have that independant freedom compared to the Dualshock 4 locked hands position, but if you don’t have the Move controllers, you will still get to enjoy your experience with Bonfire. With that said, let’s continue…
When you first start out, you are given your mission and basically told to flip the switch and good luck. However, I will say that being in the ship with all these switches and just flipping them put a big smile on my face as switch by switch came undone. It’s this simple yet, fun part that lets you know you are in for a sit back and enjoy type of ride. But it’s when you actually crash land that things start to turn around in a way that makes you start to think.
Being called Bonfire, that is where the majority of this experience is around, a bonfire. Just you, the darkness of an unfamiliar place, and your robotic friend named Debbie who is voiced by the wonderful and talented Ali Wong. Not only does she keep you company and has the most awesome culinary skills any human could want from a robotic friend next to a bonfire, she also ends up being more than just a friend, but also your conscience in a way. That’s a good thing considering your pilot and flipping switches skills have crash landed you on this alien planet.
But because this is Virtual Reality and Baobab Studios wants to do what they can to incorporate interactions and not just have you sit within Bonfire, you will need to make sure that your fire is going and oh, those strange noises you hear out in darkness, you may just want to watch out a little bit because you never know who or what may appear. Good thing Debbie has a scanner for you to use and gives you a pretty good explanation of the things that you are scanning and what they could be used for.
Let’s talk about sound and it is pretty good here. Being out at night and what appears you being all alone and hearing the noises out in the woods while still hearing the crackling of the fire in the background is very nicely done and just adds to atmosphere. Looking at the graphics, you are mostly in the dark with just the bonfire and moon of the night to help light things up. Seeing the dim light in the background does give you a feeling that you are deep in the woods with plenty of area that could be explored all while having the action coming to you as if you really were to crash-land on a planet.
Baobab Studios did an excellent job here presenting a Virtual Reality story that anyone can enjoy, but also something that parents can feel safe knowing that their children can experience as well. Bonfire provides this comfort as well as the ability to test ourselves given the choices that we can make and knowing that there still some good left in the human race.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I am going to go back to the bonfire and just enjoy life.