It’s Friday, October 9th. New York Comic Con is in full swing and people just like us are overflowing out of every corner of the Javits Center. Not me, though. Not my team. We’re somewhere much different, somewhere high, high above the streets of New York. I’m in space, on a deserted and abandoned space station where I’m quickly running out of air. Shit. I need to find an oxygen tank. I need it quickly. I’ve been told that every movement I make uses the same air that I need to breathe. Alright, let’s not do anything wasteful… Okay, maybe a barrel roll or two.
My team? They’re with me, just not in space. They’re sitting in the top floor suite of the W Hotel in Times Square watching me wave my head around like an idiot. They don’t know it yet, but I really feel like I’m in space. I do a space barrel roll and actually have to take a deep breath as I feel myself starting to get dizzy. Through the headphones I hear my crew laughing at me, “he’s smiling!” my photographer laughs. At that point I realized I was, in fact, enjoying this much more than I ever could have expected.
Back in space, I’m outside of my deserted space station listening to opera music – an audio log I found in my crew members chamber and brought with me – while I look down at the beauty of the earth. I spin around and lose my sense of direction, lost in the fun. It’s this childish moment of playfulness that kills me. I feel my heartbeat start to rise as my breath quickens and I frantically try to make my way back to the space station. In reality I’ve actually begun holding my breath. My screen begins to turn white as my hands frantically smash against my helmet, my life is over. I’ve failed to sustain myself.
Playing ADR1FT was truly an odd experience. Controlling what legitimately felt like my own movements with a controller was a surreal experience. At one point I found myself twist-turned around and felt an actual queasiness as I spun out of control in confusion. Once I was acquainted with the oddity of moving myself in space, the controls were quite simple to adjust to. Although I didn’t explicitly try to complete the game or follow any goals, yet just exploring the area gave me tons of things to interact with. Audio logs and crew items were littered around the area, providing a very real sense of dread and mystery that many games fail to adequately provide.
In that short five minute piece of ADR1Ft, I saw the future. Not just the future of a game, but the future of the industry. I’ve come to realize that ADR1FT is the next big thing. I’ll admit I had been very much a skeptic on the Oculus and where it would fit in gaming, but after just a few minutes with ADR1FT I’m already making plans to purchase one. My team had an impromptu discussion with Jerome Adams, Brand Director at 505 Games, discussing the future of Virtual Reality and it’s ability to create new gaming spaces, which you can watch below.
ADR1FT launches alongside the Oculus Rift in Q1 of 2016.