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Humanity PSVR2 Review: Nice But Not Essential

Enhance has been a pivotal part of PlayStation VR. It was there at the launch for both headsets and gave players Rez Infinite and Tetris Effect, two of the standout VR experiences on Sony’s consoles. Humanity also supports VR through PSVR and PSVR2 and while not a transformative experience, it’s a solid secondary mode that gives players a fittingly omnipotent view of their followers. 

Much like Tetris Effect, Humanity doesn’t fundamentally change from a gameplay perspective in VR. The controls are nearly the same for both versions, and there are no extra VR features aside from being able to play with the scale and make the level seem more like a miniature. In fact, there are fewer features since players can’t build levels or play player-created ones in VR (and some are reporting that VR breaks the trophies). 

Humanity PSVR2 Review: Nice But Not Essential Playing

What it does offer, though, is a new perspective and a light VR experience. Being able to look around quickly is helpful since some levels can have long lines of humans that are harder to keep track of with just the traditional camera. Getting up and physically moving around also isn’t required (or that feasible, given how many puzzles are timed in some way), but does make a few of the more complicated levels a little easier, like the more vertically oriented stages that reward those who can observe both sides of a tall structure quickly. Those on the shorter side, however, may have a harder time seeing some of those taller structures.

Even if players do decide to stand up and get active, Humanity is still not a taxing VR experience and that has a place within the roster of PSVR2 games. While titles like Resident Evil Village, Gran Turismo 7, and Horizon Call of the Mountain are big PSVR2 staples, they can be a little exhausting. These intense, highly physical (and potentially nauseating for some) experiences can’t be the only VR games PSVR2 gets, and Humanity fits the other side of that spectrum. Not every game needs to be about frantically slashing werewolves or taking down robotic dinosaurs.

Its VR functionality being optional is also important since not every game needs to be a VR-first experience. While the headset is likely going to sink or swim based on VR-only games, having the choice to play in or outside of VR makes for a solid bonus for those who have the hardware. It’s not going to be an easy jump for most games, too, so it’s great when the option doesn’t mandate a complete rework of the mechanics.

Humanity PSVR2 Review: Nice But Not Essential Playing

Even though Humanity is still strong in VR, it’s not as beneficial to the experience as Rez Infinite or Tetris Effect. Both of those games were synesthetic explosions of effects and color that fused with the thumping music to create something that was exponentially improved through VR, something Rez’s Area X in particular heartily proved. They were built upon immersing the player and getting into the zone and VR is inherently built for that. Humanity has fantastic tunes and some effects, but it’s just a different type of game that isn’t trying to be as entrancing as Rez or Tetris Effect, the latter of which was literally named after the hypnotic effects of the block stacking puzzler. 

Humanity isn’t like Resident Evil Village where the option to play in VR radically changes everything and offers something completely new. And it doesn’t have to be. It’s a solid alternative way to run through the unique puzzler that’s engrossing no matter if it’s on a TV or a VR headset. It’s relaxing either way and that, in addition to a healthy selection of more involving titles, is more than welcome on PSVR2.

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