One of the first games I thought about playing in VR when I finally got my hands on the consumer edition of the Vive, with its motion tracked controllers, was Black & White. The iconic God game from Peter Molyneux and Lionhead Studios is renowned for delivering an immersive and satisfying gameplay loop of what it would be like to be a giant, towering, God to a society. In charge of keeping them happy — or wiping them out — it involved a lot more nuance than something like, for example, Sim City.
The Ancients, an upcoming VR game from Immersion (the same folks behind TrueScale) isn’t aiming to fulfill that promise exactly, but it does touch on some of the same topics. In The Ancients, you play the role of one of towering God-like creatures from the first-person perspective. I got to try out an early pre-alpha build of the game and looking down at ant-sized people scurrying around cities was surreal.
Visually, it’s a breathtaking experience. You can see in the tech demo video above how gorgeous the water looks as it sways and crashes against the rocks. As one of the titular Ancients, your character towers over the cities, mountains, boats, and even ocean below.
Villagers manned vessels (shown below) that swarmed around me launching attacks that did little more than resemble annoying pebbles being chucked from hundreds of feet below. It gave off a very “David and Goliath” vibe, but this time I got to be Goliath.
In my arsenal there were two main weapons to choose from: an ice-fused ax and a large flail. The flail was my favorite as I could swing it above my head dramatically using HTC Vive’s wand-shaped motion controllers then send it crashing down into a row of ships.
We don’t know much else about The Ancients, other than it should support competitive multiplayer of some kind eventually. A large portion of the concept art shows two giants facing off against one another, something that I didn’t get to try yet. It would be great to command forces at my feet that had to battle it out while I also fought an equally-massive God-like creature in the skies as well. That would certainly introduce an interesting dynamic.
All of the beautiful concept art you see above was created by Jakub Różalski. The Ancients doesn’t have a solidified release date yet, but Immersion is planning on bringing the game to both Rift and Vive. A PlayStation VR (PSVR) version is planned, but that would release much later.
Let us know what you think of the game so far in the comments below!