This plot driven puzzle game is one of the best for the PSVR and uses its top of the line graphics, attention grabbing plot and challenging puzzles to create an experience that will surely be one of your favorites on the PSVR. Red Matter is the best of Detached and Blind mixed into one wonderful, albeit short and pricey, journey.
Genre: Puzzle Game
Game Length: 2-3 hours
Controller: Move Controllers
PlayPSVR Score: 7.5
I admit I may be tough on puzzle games. One reason is because when a game is such one dimensional (which puzzle games are often time) it is essential you nail that one dimension. Games like Torn and Blind did not. And were not only extremely disappointing, but simply not enjoyable. However, Vertical Robot nailed it with Red Matter. Engaging atmospheres, challenging (but not too difficult) puzzles and a plot that can really be enjoyed are just a few of the reasons Red Matter is my #1 puzzle experience for the PSVR.
Without giving anything about the plot away, you play as an astronaut directed by a friendly authoritative figure on a mission to collect secret documents from a base. To do so you will encounter many puzzles, a vast space station (or base) and witness some really remarkable environments. The plot is a very good one and keeps you hanging on the edge of your seat, especially near the end. As the game progresses it ever so slowly increases the anticipation and suspense so that you don’t even know you are anxious until the finishing scene.
The game uses the move controllers and have rather simple controls. Movement is rather slow and allows you to either use the motion button to slowly move via free locomotion or you can teleport (which is quicker) and has a cool space feel to it. When some of the puzzles require dexterity the move controllers present a hassle, but nothing too great that can’t be overcome.
I want to praise the elaborate and absolutely incredible environments and graphics in this game. You will forget you are playing PSVR and rather will soon be transformed into the eerie world of Red Matter. Each outside area looks vast and beautiful. The colors are vibrant and make you just stand and mesmerize about where you are. The foreground is detailed while the far away features of the world still contain adequate care. When inside teh space station each item, room and area is very detailed and you can tell that each area was very carefully created and developed. Even items that are of no use or are nothing more than space fillers look excellent. I applaud Vertical Robot for not only developing the best looking puzzle game but one of the best looking PSVR games to date.
I really enjoyed the puzzles as well, which isn’t necessarily an easy thing for me to be impressed by. They are challenging but not too difficult and I would say that none of the puzzles are contrived, which I find pretty rare in PSVR puzzles games thus far. Games like 18 Floors are just so difficult and no normal human would be able to solve those puzzles without spending hours and hours. Thankfully, Red Matter is not like this at all. Every puzzle makes perfect sense and the player has everything they need to problem solve the solutions, even if it takes a little critical thinking. It was just so great as a player to be able to follow the thinking and workflow of each puzzle rather than fighting to find connections and solutions.
These puzzles along with the plot (which again I can’t talk too much about) work in perfect harmony and really make Red Matter the great game that it is. Other puzzle games that strive to utilize plot and puzzles simply have not come close to what Red Matter can provide. I don’t think Red Matter is the best puzzle game on the PSVR (that still goes out to Statik btw) but is easily the best puzzle/plot experience/game combo game out there.
Honestly, I have one really picky complaint and one mild one. That’s it. My picky complaint is that moving in this game is incredibly slow. You could probably shave 30 min off game play if you could just move at a faster pace. Instead, you get this slow walking on the moon type of movement and although cool for the first hour, afterward it got rather annoying because I knew what I needed to do and where to go, it just took too long to get there. My second complaint is the price. $25 isn’t horribly unfair for this title, as it is quite good, but a little on the higher side. Many PSVR games in this price range have a lot more replay value, are more complex than a puzzle game and provide some more “it” factors that will leave players a little more impressed. $15 is like the perfect consumer price for this game, but at $20 if you’re a puzzle fan I would really have a hard time telling you to skip this.
All in all, Red Matter is one of the best PSVR puzzle games on the PSVR. It boasts the most enjoyable puzzles yet on the PSVR, some of the most beautiful graphics and created a plot/game play combo unlike others of its kind. If you are a puzzle fan this game is a must play at some point in the near future. Even if you aren’t a puzzle fan once on sale I strongly suggest you consider it because Red Matter is that good. I can only hope that other developers use this game as a benchmark of what a good game looks like and will follow suit.