E3 2019: Beat Saber Meets Superhot VR In Cloudhead Games’ Pistol Whip
Dodge bullets and shoot down waves of bad guys to a killer beat.
UploadVR saved the best for last during today’s E3 VR Showcase, capping off their coverage with the announcement of Pistol Whip, a new VR shoot-em-up that’s equal parts bullet hell and endless runner.
Brought to us by Cloudhead Games, the same team responsible for the episodic fantasy-inspired interactive VR series The Gallery, Pistol Whip is a fast-paced rhythm-based shooter in which players dodge, shoot, and “pistol whip” their way through a chaotic gauntlet of fractal enemies in an adrenaline-fueled death run.
“It’s a shooter that you don’t necessarily have to be dead accurate for to hit. It’s a rhythm game that doesn’t require you to take out enemies in a specific order,” stated Cameron Oltmann, Programming/ Design Lead at Cloudhead Games, in an official developer doc.
“It’s like taking chocolate and peanut butter in VR with your kind of flow state rhythm of Beat Saber and you’ve got your frenetic action of Superhot, and you put them together and you end up feeling like John Wick in a movie trailer; taking out targets and ultimately being this action hero bad-ass,” added Designer Antony Stevens.
Cloudhead Games partnered with Montreal music label Kannibalen Records to provide an epic, action-packed soundtrack perfect for slaying waves of enemy combatants to.
“They just seemed to have this library of really dramatic and kick-ass, epic action songs,” explained Joel Green, Audio Director on the project. “But they’re also just super fun, so it really kind of hit the sweet spot for us and what we were looking for.”
“Even by happenstance, without even trying, the player is going to be kind of musically flowing through the game just based on where the enemies are popping up.”
Cloudhead states Pistol Whip will be available on major VR headsets later this year, although no specific platforms have been confirmed as of yet. However, based on the trailer it appears as though the Valve Index will be supported, which in turn suggests compatibility with SteamVR.
Of course, the visuals shown throughout the video—still in beta—don’t appear to feature any particularly strenuous details, which could signal possible compatibility with the Oculus Quest. No doubt the extreme amount of movement necessary to play would benefit greatly from standalone VR technology.