Visual Downgrade Aside, Everest VR Shapes Up Well On PSVR

by Jamie Feltham • October 4th, 2017

As an early technical showcase for PC VR, we’ve long been interested in how Everest VR will hold up on the promised PlayStation VR (PSVR) port. Using satellite imagery to create a crisp, highly-detailed virtual rendition of the world’s biggest mountain, developer Solfar Studio dreamed a real assault on the senses on Rift and Vive, designed with room-scale in mind but also compatible with standing player modes. Can it scale that down into a satisfactory console experience?

Put simply, yes it can.

Everest VR shapes up pretty nicely on VR, easily adapting to the less-able 180 degree tracking system and the Move controllers (with support for the DualShock 4 for those that don’t own Moves). You use two face buttons to turn at angles and a teleporter to explore while moving on ladders and up cliffs is just as intuitive as it was on Rift and Vive. Lots of PC VR experiences have an awkward time transitioning their controls to PSVR, but this isn’t one of them.

Predictably, the biggest hit is to the visual department. Though the scale of Everest VR’s scenes remains the same, textures are noticeably blurrier than there were on PC, and character models have been stripped back too. After trying the game on PS4 I went back to the Rift version to compare the two; the intro videos on PSVR have been compressed quite a bit (to the point that I gasped when I rewatched the crystal-clear Rift versions) and texture detail has been dramatically stripped down.

It’s fortunate, then, that a lot of Everest VR involves staring at snow. While areas like Base Camp might look significantly worse, in other sequences like climbing the side of the mountain these problems are far less noticeable. Textures in the Google Earth-style God Mode are also incredibly muddy when scaled down to human size, though they look great from afar.

Overall the stripped-down presentation wasn’t too much of an issue, and I still enjoyed my ascent of the mountain. If you’ve got a Rift or Vive then that’s definitely the way to go, but the PSVR version will do you just fine.

Everest VR is available now on PSVR, Rift and Vive.

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