One of the more exciting concepts to marry retrogaming with Virtual Reality is coming our way later this month! It was announced today that Pixel Ripped 1989 is releasing later this month on July 31st. The price has been set at a very reasonable $19.99. The game is headed to the Oculus Store, PSN and Steam, covering all the major dedicated VR platforms. We've seen a few retro themed VR games already, including New Retro Arcade Neon by Digital Cybercherries and more recently Compound by Bevan McKechnie. Pixel Ripped 1989 takes the unique approach of transporting you back in time, where you'll enjoy a first person perspective while playing various portable, arcade and home gaming consoles. However, it doesn't end there. It seems that some of the digital characters and enemies from the games are leaking out into actual reality.
This back and forth combination between playing games on physical devices and then also dealing with them leaking into the real world forms a unique gameplay twist that a medium like VR should be able to exploit to the fullest extent. Exactly how the developer, Pixel Ripped Inc. will take advantage of this clever concept remains to be seen. One example from the trailer shows you playing your "Gear Kid" in class while the teacher is giving a lesson. It seems the goal during this sequence is to play as much as possible without being discovered. In other sequences, you're outside during recess, again, probably trying to get as far through your Gear Kid game cartridge as you can, before being interrupted.
Regardless of how all the play mechanics ultimately work themselves out, one thing is certain, developer Pixel Ripped Inc. has a deep, intimate knowledge of retrogaming. It shows up again and again throughout this title. You'll notice portable game cartridges that look like dead-ringers for Nintendo GameBoy games. In fact, you'll even see video game magazines that are surprisingly similar to Electronic Gaming Monthly issues from the early 90's. It's all these little details that could really set Pixel Ripped 1989 apart from the pack. Stress Level Zero's Duck Season is another great example of how taking advantage of nostalgia can reap tremendous dividends. In fact, I'd have to guess that if you played and enjoyed Duck Season because of how it tickled your nostalgia receptors, you're probably going to fall head over heels for Pixel Ripped 1989.
Pixel Ripped 1989 was originally scheduled for a Spring 2018 release, then got delayed till September. Lucky for us, the wait isn't going to be as long as we originally feared. In just a few weeks we'll be able to check out the game first hand, and see if it actually delivers on all these cool ideas and concepts. As a part-time retrogamer myself, I'm absolutely stoked to check out the finished version of this title, and I'm really hoping it lives up to the trailers and screenshots. Stay Tuned!