Journey for Elysium Studio Release Dev Diary #2: Mechanics

Currently, Mantis Games is developing a story-driven virtual reality (VR) experience called Journey for Elysium. The studio is documenting the process through a series of Dev Diaries with the first one ‘Genesis’ released last month in time for the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3 2019). Today, VRFocus has the exclusive first look at the second diary, called ‘Mechanics’.

For Journey for Elysium Dev Diary #2: Mechanics the team detail several of the gameplay processes players can expect to see in the final release, such as one of the core features, the rowing. A boat connects all the main areas, so generally after completing a puzzle, you’ll have to hop into the boat and row to the next location. Mantis Games chose this particular option to aid immersion, physically exerting the player so they feel more involved in each part of the videogame.

While rowing sounds like a simple solution the team readily state that this posed its own two-fold challenge, making sure no VR sickness was caused using a transport system which itself can lead to nausea in some people. Whilst sorting these issues another arose, the term ‘VR Legs’. This in itself is usually a good thing, after playing plenty of VR you become accustomed and don’t get nauseous to movement in VR. The downside for developers, it desensitises them to the problem customers may face; which is difficult to solve if they can’t replicate it.

One mechanic plenty of VR players should be used to is firing a bow. Tricky to perfect, the inclusion of a bow in titles offers a far more interactive mechanic than simply firing a gun, hence why videogames like Apex Construct and In Death almost exclusively focus on that weapon. Plus the fact that Journey for Elysium has been inspired by Greek and Roman mythology so having a bow in this ancient era is very fitting.

With a distinctive black and white art style, Journey for Elysium puts you in the role of an unnamed hero who has passed away. Finding yourself on a boat travelling through the Underworld trapped between life and death, you must solve an increasingly complex range of puzzles in order to reach Elysium and obtain redemption.

Check out the full developer diary below. For further updates on Journey for Elysium ahead of its scheduled launch in Q4 2019 for Oculus Rift/Rift S, HTC Vive and Valve Index on Steam, keep reading VRFocus.

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