Splendid Sorcery Delving into the Wizarding Waltz of the Wizard!
As readers of GYGO will know we’ve recently been lucky enough to try out an Oculus Quest and really put the incredible piece of cutting-edge VR-tech to the test. One feature, in particular, really caught our attention. As many fans of the Quest will know the headset now has inbuilt ‘hand-tracking’ allowing users to literally use their hands instead of the standard Oculus Quest in order to affect their surroundings.
One title in particular which uses this feature to great lengths has understandably quickly gained a lot of interest. ‘Waltz of the Wizard’ from Icelandic developer Aldin is a unique vr experience putting the player in the shoes of a wizard. Through the player’s own experiments, combining magical ingredients within their handy cauldron they’ll be able to discover first hand what it’s like cast spells like a true mage! With so much promise of manipulation and immersion with your environment we were intrigued to see how well the gaming experience plays out. Believe me when I say, we had no idea what we were letting ourselves in for…
Originating in the confines of a wizard’s tower the player is thrown instantly into a beautifully rendered world of sorcery. What’s truly remarkable though is the amount of detail within the setting created by Aldin. Statues creepily move, banners flutter in the breeze and rats scurry about the floor. But straightaway it’s evident that WOTW is far from a standard Quest title.
What truly sets this game apart is the fact that pretty much everything visible within your world is easily manipulated by the player. Be it lifting the highly detailed gold vases in front of you, blowing up a barrel using your magical powers, or chiming the xylophone on your wizard’s table. It’s all there to be played with and the effect is incredible. Arguably one of the most stunning renders is the actual cauldron itself which bubbles away constantly – and (incredibly) allows the player to dip their hands into it’s magical waters, which you can then manipulate with your own fingers just like a real liquid! The feeling of depth within the manipulation of the world left us captivated. It’s an insanely addictive experience and one you’ll lose hours in playing with.
But the real fun is to be had when the player starts experimenting in mixing different combinations of ingredients into the cauldron unleashing the many spells on offer. Within just a few minutes we were able to grow our character to the size of a giant and blast out fireworks from our fingertips. Spell casting is also kept nice and simple thanks to the easy to follow instructions shown via your own desktop magic painting, illustrating which hand gestures unleashes the creative magic on offer. Sometimes it might be the flick of a wrist or perhaps gesturing at an object so it’s ‘summoned’ to you. Believe us, this is the closest you’re going to come to fulfilling that wish to be Gandalf.
Also if the player finds themselves unsure how best to proceed then they’ve got the helpful assistance of an enchanted skull which constantly chatters to them from atop his stack of books. What’s particularly fantastic is how he too can be ‘magicked’ and you’ll watch with glee as he berates you for enlarging him to the size of a beach ball or moans as you turn him into a frog.
It should be said there’s also a host of other items and puzzles to solve within WOTW, so there’s no chance of losing interest in this title anytime soon. In fact with the opportunities to unlock new items by solving riddles, traversing labyrinths and mastering the many hand gestures to master all the spells you’ll be returning time after time to this phenomenal game.
We’ve had the pleasure of trying out a range of Oculus Quest titles and this stands apart as being the most incredible use of the hand tracking system we’ve seen to date. Aldin have done an amazing job and it’s a game which we’re sure you’ll find hard to put down. An absolutely essential purchase for any Quest owner.
Make sure you purchase your copy at https://www.aldin.io/press-waltz.html