Now Playing: Killing Floor – Incursion (PSVR)

Oh, if only this game was anywhere near as fun as it looks. Killing Floor – Incursion is a spinoff of Left 4 Dead clone Killing Floor, at least that’s what I’m going to lazily refer to it as, never having played it myself. It doesn’t much matter, as there’s very little story to be had in this yet-another-shooting-gallery-type VR game. This is a dual-wielding Move controller based shooter, but it’s not one of those VR games where you just stand there and shoot waves of enemies, no this one has you moving around levels and then stopping and standing there as you shoot waves of enemies and that’s where it all falls apart.

Let me tell you how this game started out for me. First there’s a very brief prologue scene, followed by an interactive flashback scene where you’re frozen in place and get to shoot a few zombies. All you’re told at this point is how to pick up the gun in front of you and shoot it, so I did that, but then I accidentally pressed another button that made me drop the gun. I couldn’t seem to reach the gun where it fell and since I was frozen in place I couldn’t move to get a better angle from which to grab it. A few seconds later the gun disappeared. The zombies kept coming and I stood there helplessly waiting for them to finish me off so I could try again…except they couldn’t seem to actually kill me. This being a prologue flashback sequence, it seemed that enemy damage was set very, very low so I had to sit there for a few minutes while the zombies chipped away at my health until I was almost dead, but then a weird little robot appeared and healed me and I was back to full health, yet still stuck in the same position. Out of patience, I exited the game and started over.

The next time I avoided pressing the drop button and easily finished the scene, which let me advance to the training level where the game would generously tell me how to actually play it, I hoped. I made it through a simple healing tutorial and a firing range, then moved on to one that would tell me how to use a little helper drone. It seems that I moved too quickly here and shouldn’t have commanded the drone to seek ammo before the game had actually finished explaining to me that I should command the drone to seek ammo, because the drone went and found ammo that was sitting back at the shooting range instead of the place where the drone tutorial would spawn some example ammo two seconds later. This broke the game and I was forced to start all over again.

THE NEXT TIME I made it past the drone tutorial and reached a throwing knife tutorial. I was given two knives to try out at a knife throwing range. I accidentally dropped one of them and it permanently disappeared, even though picked up weapons are supposed to teleport into a weapon slot on your body if you drop them, as the tutorial had just finished explaining to me. After failing to come even close to hitting a target with the other knife a few times, it too suddenly disappeared forever. Fucking awesome. Luckily the game seemed to have glitched out in my favor and I somehow still had the pistols from the shooting range in my holsters so I just pulled them out and shot the knife targets, successfully completing my knife training. Hooray.

This about sums up what playing this game feels like. Once allowed to actually start playing the game things went slightly better, but I was still constantly plagued by movement, calibration, and weapon holstering issues. Default movement is teleportation and incremental turns, which I’ve never liked using in any VR game and this one was even worse when you’re trying to do it with motion controllers and trying to play a game that seems to want you to be moving around and shooting/reloading in a quick fashion as if this were a standard FPS. There was the option to enable free movement and smooth turning, but it wasn’t much better. Imagine trying to have a FPS battle in a big room with a nasty boss and a bunch of normal enemies spawning, where you have to be running around avoiding, killing, and picking up ammo and health at a pretty fast pace, but you can only move forward. No reverse, no strafe, just forward or awkward teleport leaps of short distances to places that are also in front of you, then having to slowly turn around with just enough time to get off one or two shots before having to do it all over again.

Then there’s the weapons and the holster system. The ability to store and retrieve weapons on/from your virtual body sounds great on paper, but it’s a nightmare when you actually have to try to do it in-game. Grabbing the pistols on your chest doesn’t always work, especially when you also have grabbable flashlight directly next to one of them, yet the game is constantly forcing you to empty your hands to pick up items so you have no choice but to keep holster your guns on a regular basis, then continue to be annoyed when you can’t get them to get back into your hands when the enemies return.

Then there’s the two handed weapons like the shotgun and grenades. To use a grenade you have to pick it up with one hand, then pull the pin with the other, then throw it. Again, sounds great on paper, but obviously you have to free both of your hands to do this, so you have to drop both guns, perform the grenade toss, then struggle to get both your guns back out properly again mid-combat, and really, it’s not even worth the hassle. The shotgun is similarly clunky, forcing you to use a second hand to pump the gun after every single shot, which makes it so slow and unwieldy that it’s barely worth bothering with.

AND THERE’S MORE! This game has the absolute worst calibration drift I’ve ever seen in a VR game so far. I can’t even get through one level without having to hard restart the game to recenter my character, because every 30 minutes or so my view would become so off-center that the game was unplayable, and of course, like most VR games, the default re-centering feature doesn’t actually do anything (I will never understand this. Why are Capcom and maybe one or two other companies the only people to ever actually put a proper re-centering button in their VR games? Why is this not a priority for anyone?).

I made it half way through Killing Floor – Incursion and I tried and tried to convince myself to push on through and continue because you know how I love my horror games, I hate to leave things unfinished, and I sure didn’t want my money to have been entirely wasted on this, but damn it, it’s just not fun. Why force myself to keep struggling through this shit for a few more hours when it’s more annoying than fun? As nice as it looks for a VR game, Killing Floor – Incursion just isn’t worth the hassle.

6 comments on “Now Playing: Killing Floor – Incursion (PSVR)

  1. raistlin0903 says:

    Wow…this really seems to be a truly horrible experience. I think it was a wise decision to quit playing it, as this seems more like torture than an actual game. 😢

  2. Every time i think getting a VR kit might be a cool idea, something like this comes along and reminds me that i really, really shouldn’t.

  3. that’s such a shame. This looks like such a good game.

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