One Of The Best Oculus Rift Games I’ve Played Was Third-Person

One Of The Best Oculus Rift Games I’ve Played Was Third-Person

When the Oculus rep met my confused look with, “yeah, we weren’t sure it was going to work either”, I didn’t know what to expect. As it turns out third person works in VR.

Developer Playful’s Lucky’s Tale is a shameless riff on Mario and other 3D platformers but its distinguishing feature is that third person camera in a VR headset – your view floats along behind the main character as if you’re following in a cart. The immediate impression is that of a theme park ride, something like Universal’s The Simpsons attraction, as you chase the main characters.

It works. It shouldn’t but it does. Within seconds I forgot about the novelty aspect of the view and I was just playing a game. There’s no practical mechanic to the VR side of things (bar a look-to-aim bomb throwing bit) but being able to peer around the world or tilt your head to glance past scenery just left a huge smile on my face. Although to be honest almost anything on Rift makes me smile.

The main thing is that it’s really opened my eyes to the potential of non-first person applications in virtual reality. Before playing Lucky’s Tale I’d never even considered VR being able to do anything that wasn’t an FPS, but now anything seems possible. One idea briefly mentioned that instantly clicked was an RTS where you could look around the map or battlefield as you play.

I’m not entirely sure however how well it’s going to sit on the motion sickness spectrum though. It’s not a problem I suffer from but, even with my iron stomach, having no control or warning over movement does create a violent lurching sensation when your invisible cart starts to move along its tracks. I think that could be a problem for some.

Aside from that, however, this is an interesting look at ways VR could be used in gaming that might not be immediately obvious. Like the dawn of 3D polygons or touchscreen gaming, it could take a while before they really work out what they can do with the tech and we start to see really innovative uses. A lot of ‘current’ Rift stuff is still, really, contemporary ideas put into virtual reality. This is too, obviously, but it proves that VR doesn’t start and end with a first-person view.

This post originally appeared on Kotaku UK, bringing you original reporting, game culture and humour with a U from the British isles.


    • I never understood why people had this blinkered view that the Oculus was only for first person games. They say “it’ll never work for MMOs”.

      Well “Bollocks!” I say to them. Luck’s Tail has been demoed many times and it DOES work. Bring on more 3rd person VR games, I say,.

  • Yeah, this is one of the things I’ve seen that’s really perked my interest in the OR, really clever way of making use of the tech. This and the spaceship type demo in the latest kit, with all the screen displays around the cockpit and such.

        • I played it on a decent PC so I could get 60FPS, even with the super low resolution it was hands down the best VR experience I’ve had. Polished to purity, orchestrated by a god and designed by his son, hands down, just amazing. And I can’t wait to see what else they make, cause “games” like that are more than just movies…

  • Without knowing what the player is doing, it doesn’t seem like they’ve really leveraged anything with regards to the OR being a VR device other than a gameplay gimmick. Third person games are obviously going to work, we already have tons of real life examples like remote control vehicles, walking the dog and camera dollies.

    What I was expecting was something where you, as what amounts to Latiku on his cloud, float behind the game character and have a full sphere of vision in the world as you control them. Occulus Rift’s strongest selling point with regards to third person games is the fact that it removes the need for the often clumsy camera controls. The player just sits on a cloud near the character and turns their head to look around.

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