It’s never easy making money in virtual reality (VR). Pricing a title just right is a tricky business, aim too high and no one will be interested – unless it’s a big IP – while aiming low can then be difficult to recoup that investment. For the most part, VR videogames cost money because nothing in life is free; unless that happens to be Glyph, Bolverk Games’ latest which just so happens to not cost a penny.
The studio is best known for its comedic shooter franchise Dick Wilde so Glyph is a somewhat different approach to VR gaming. First teased back in October the premise behind Glyph is to control a ball across a series of open levels, collecting coins and crystals en route – the crystals are required to open a portal and finish the area.
This is no ordinary ball as no only do you have a double-jump function you can also fly short distances by unfurling into a scarab. Mastering these gameplay mechanics is essential because apart from the pillars jutting out of the sand the rest of the environment is deadly. Bolverk Games has designed each level so that there are multiple ways of completing it, all depending on how you prefer to play. Whether that’s slow and methodical or fast and reckless.
Offering a single-player campaign with a ghost mode so you can speed run levels, Glyph also provides a multiplayer option which is unusual for a puzzle title. This mode is a game of tag for up to four players with the same movement and death rules applying.
Supporting Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Valve Index headsets on Steam, the core Glyph experience is completely free. Bolverk Games plan to monetise the title via DLC expansion packs, with the first Tsukinawa Level Pack already available for $7.99 USD/£5.79 GBP. Offering 10 levels, the environments change to the snowy landscape of ancient Japan, with the levels being a little more difficult ranging from medium to hard. You’ll not only have new dangers to face but you’ll also be rewarded with a dragonfly character model, to be used in all single-player levels and multiplayer arenas.
VRFocus will continue its coverage of Bolverk Games and Glyph, reporting back with further updates.
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Author: Peter Graham