Before we begin this article about Rick and Morty VR, I have to come forward with a very important piece of backstory…
I’ve never seen Rick and Morty. I hardly know which one is Rick and which one is Morty… and don’t even ask me to tell you which characters are from Rick and Morty and which ones are from Bob’s Burgers – they all kind of look the same to me.
That’s not to say I dislike the show. I just don’t have cable nor an ample amount of time to watch TV. When I do watch things it’s usually either taking hours to binge through old Cinemassacre content or watching a series on Netflix. Luckily for me (and you) I brought an expert with me: my good friend and SaveState Podcast Co-Host Christian Appenzeller.
So, after a long weekend it was finally time. Rick and Morty was our only appointment for Sunday (I didn’t mind, I was exhausted.)
I strapped on the HTC Vive and was given some instructions. One button I had squeezed my hand to do things like grab and hold objects while the other allowed me to teleport. I was placed inside a big black cubicle and dialed in. I opened my eyes and, well, there they were. Rick and Morty were standing in front of me, talking to me, telling me stuff. At first this was a passive experience for me. I looked around and moved my hands of course, but I just stared forward.
Then Rick killed me. Well, first he told me he was going to shoot me straight in the face. Then I let him. Then he killed me.
I awoke in a black room with a phone in front of me. I picked it up and held it to my ear – this is where things start to get cool – and the voice actually adjusted based on the distance from my head the phone was.
Maybe this is nothing new in the VR world, but I wouldn’t know – I only ever get to play with VR at the various conventions I attend simply due to the cost of creating a VR ready PC gaming rig.
Anyway, back to the game. When I returned, Rick and Morty essentially told me I had a quick objective to complete before everything blew up, and it was all up to me. Then they left. This is where the demo opened itself up and got reaaalllyyy immersive. I was left in the Rick and Morty garage which was partitioned off in to three open spaces roughly the size of a room. In these rooms I was able to teleport around, pick up and interact with items, and throw stuff.
I threw a lot of stuff.
What I loved about Rick and Morty VR wasn’t just the quality of the content I was presented, but the expansiveness of it. Every counter was absolutely filled with cool stuff I could interact with. I broke bottles on the ground (because I could), put on a King’s crown (because I could!), and tried to make as much of a mess as possible in the short time I had.
Through dialogue and paying attention to the scenery I was able to determine the general objective I was trying to complete. This was the first VR space I’ve been in that really grabbed me and held me for the duration of the game. The audio was great and truly surrounding, the play space I was in felt expensive, and the HTC Vive’s view was simply amazing. Traversing across the three areas in the garage I managed to create a robot that mimicked everything I did. I used this to grab some sort of electronic-device-thing from outside of the garage and begin to follow the steps to open it.
Unfortunately, the end was nigh. No really, it was. A bomb or some sort of dimensional rift or SOMETHING was about to go off, so Rick and Morty created an interdimensional portal for me to step through – and this is where it got really cool. I looked at it, heard them telling me to step through… and I hesitated. It really felt like I was walking through some sort of portal. On the other side the final frontier greeted me. As I stepped in to outer space and saw Rick and Morty across the way on their own space platform, I had an idea…
I put my hand on my head and took off my crown.
Then I threw it down in to the void of space and watched it fall.
Rick and Morty were talking to me but I just watched the crown keep falling. That was really damn cool.
As surprising as it was, and as unexpected as it felt, Rick and Morty VR was certainly the most immersive VR experience I’ve ever experienced.