We’re some four hours into The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR and we’ve already got a quest list longer than our armspan, but we can say definitively that this is a great version of the game. Adapted for PlayStation VR, Bethesda’s behemoth open world looks exactly like you remember it – but also like you’ve never seen it before.
It’s difficult to put into words just what the transition to virtual reality means; it’s a bit like familiarising yourself with a city via Google Street Maps and then visiting it for yourself. Locations like Riverwood and Whiterun are identical in terms of architecture and layout, but there’s a sense of scale to the world with PlayStation VR that’s impressive to behold.
Take Jarl Balgruuf’s cathedral-esque Dragonsreach. On the PlayStation 3 – or its recent PlayStation 4 remaster – it always appeared enormous, but visiting it with PlayStation VR reveals a monolithic temple-like structure, which will leave you standing agape. The scale that virtual reality adds is really something else – even if we’ve already beaten this drum to death.
There are compromises, of course – the visuals are a bit blurry on the PS4 Pro, and the detail has clearly been dialled down in order to ensure a flawless framerate. But the good news is that it controls well with either the DualShock 4 or the PlayStation Move wands, and there are a generous selection of toggles allowing you to customise the experience to your tastes.
On the DualShock 4 the controls default to free movement and snap turning, but you can alter the speed and size of the rotations – or select smooth turning if you prefer. Meanwhile, the PlayStation Move does default to teleportation which simply doesn’t work in a world of Skyrim’s scale, but you can bind run to the Move button if you prefer.
To be honest, we’re yet to be convinced that the motion controllers add a lot; it’s nice being able to rotate objects in your hands, but the game’s clearly not designed with that kind of technology in mind. As a result, we’ll probably be continuing our quest with the controller; you can look forward to a full review as soon as possible.
Are you planning to pick up The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR for PlayStation VR this week, or are you waiting for our review? Revisit all your favourite locations in the comments section below.