Review: Layers of Fear VR (PSVR)

Do you dare to venture into the darkest parts of a mad artist’s psyche – in virtual reality?

I’m pretty new to playing VR games and I really managed to score two really scary games to begin with. A while ago I reviewed Doom 3 VR Edition and I really digged to get around and experience the game in a whole new way. VR technology to Playstation 4 (Pro) is really impressive in terms of how precisely your head movements and hand movements first transfer to the game. What I do feel, however, is a bit of a shame is that there is quite a low resolution in the VR glasses, something that has more to do with the previous generation of hardware than anything else (nice to Playstation VR 2 is then up and running). Today’s consideration is Layers of Fear VR and this is also a perfect game to get a VR update.

Photo: Bloober Team - Layers of Fear VR - Copyright 2021 - Paintings from hell.
Photo: Bloober Team

We move through a seemingly abandoned house. Slowly, we gather more and more clues about what happened. We are an artist who is slowly losing his mind, at the same time as the world around us is changing. Will we be able to find the truth about the past and unlock the future? IN Layers of Fear VR you get to experience creeping horror in a whole new way.

Photo: Bloober Team - Layers of Fear VR - Copyright 2021 - Whats behind the curtain?
Photo: Bloober Team

Layers of Fear, from Polish Bloober Team, was released already in 2016 and now it is released again, this time in VR version. When I played Doom 3 – VR Edition so I played with the regular hand control, but this time I use Playstation Move (motion controllers) – which the game requires – for the first time. For me, it opened up a whole new dimension of what you can do in VR. You can use the right and left hands to pick things up, turn and turn objects and open drawers, for example. In the end, it all feels so normal that you can almost feel the textures of the things you pick up, because the brain is so deceived. It is important to be careful and not miss a single thing. Turn and turn everything you find. It can sometimes be difficult to see, but with a simple push of a button you can read the text on letters and the like much more clearly. Another nice detail is that you can get tutorial text at any time and see what the different buttons on the controls do. You can choose whether you want to play the game standing or sitting. Personally, I want to be comfortable when I play games so I chose to sit, but tried to stand for a while as well. Standing actually adds another dimension to the whole. However, you must be careful that there is nothing near you that you can wave down, because it is both once and twice you will jump to out of sheer fear!

Photo: Bloober Team - Layers of Fear VR - Copyright 2021 - Devils in the details.
Photo: Bloober Team

The sound and music are perfect for creating a nasty atmosphere right from the first frame. You are on full swing all the time and I realized after a while of playing that I had squeezed the carpet with my toes so much that I had pain in my toes! Just like with Doom 3 VR Edition it flashes every time you use the buttons to turn around. The reason is for you to be able to keep track of which direction you are standing, but I think (again) it is an extremely unnecessary thing and would have liked to see that function could be turned off.

Photo: Bloober Team - Layers of Fear VR - Copyright 2021 - Heads up.

Doom 3 was released in 2004, so the graphics were quite angular and “ugly”, which is understandable as it is an old game. Layers of Fear was released in 2016 and in these twelve years between games, a lot has happened in terms of graphics. But unfortunately it is not noticeable here. Layers of Fear does not look much newer than Doom 3, which is a great pity.

In summary, that is Layers of Fear VR a really scary and cool game, which really works perfectly in VR format. Some graphic flaws and the fact that some puzzles are a little too difficult for their own good lowers the grade from the top tier. But another recommendation Layers of Fear VR must still be given, if you have all the equipment – and dare – experience it.