Virtual Reality has come a long way in the last few years. We still have a long way to go, but something that has been missing in the VR gaming area is the ability to walk around freely, as well as interact with other players beside you at the same time – i.e. your friends. Enter free roaming virtual reality gaming by Virtual Galaxies in Toronto.
Want to win a Virtual Galaxies pass for you and up to 7 of your friends? Enter at the end of this review!
Virtual Galaxies Games
There are several different games you, and up to 7 of your friends at one time, can play at Virtual Galaxies right now. I got to try out Engineerium and Outbreak Origins, but there are several more. For now, all these games require co-op teamwork to advance to the next portion of each level. You can select the games you want to play in advance or discuss it with the staff on site. They just announced a PVP(player vs player) mode which is great! You can sign up a team of 4 people for $200. You will then advance through a multiplayer tournament with lots of gaming sessions for that one entrance fee. If you are interested in getting involved in the PVP you can sign your team up right now via this link.
Virtual Galaxies Before Game Briefing and Suit Up Experience
The experience starts with you and your group signing up and choosing a player name. You will enter your email address, some basic information and agree to their straightforward waiver on their tablet. You can place any outer gear or coats you have in the public coat check. Any purses or phones can be left with staff or in a pocket, but it might be best to not bring them at all if you can! After this, you are brought into the briefing room with all the VR gear and now you will get suited up.
The staff express multiple times that you are not to touch the gear and they will place it on you. No broken gear this way. The backpack is placed on you first with the help of a staff member and they are actually pretty lightweight. There is a clip on the left side with a Razer headset with a microphone and a clip on the right side with the VR headset. Each step is explained to you about the correct way to put the VR headset on and then the headphones. All of this is not very complicated at all but make sure you are following the staff’s directions.
It should be noted that if you wear glasses you cannot wear them in this experience. The VR headset has the ability to adjust 2 + 1 to -3.8 diopters of vision adjustment. If your prescription falls in that range, you’ll still be able to play otherwise it’s suggested that you wear contact lenses. That might be a hindrance for some but I imagine most people will fit into that level of vision adjustment.
You are given a detailed walkthrough of the various games that you have selected. They explain things like the proximity alarms so you can see in your headset when your teammates are nearby, so you won’t walk into them. It also shows on the tv screen what it looks like when you’re getting close to an actual real-life wall, There are also waypoint circles that will appear periodically in the game that require all of your group to stand in them to progress to the next part of the level. This entire process takes about 10 to 15-minutes of setup and explanation of all the parts that you need to know about your games. I felt free to ask questions if I didn’t understand something. The staff was very helpful and knowledgeable.
Virtual Galaxies Gameplay Experience Review
After the initial training is over, you are entered into a large 2,200 sq ft warehouse. Although it looks pretty blank to start, soon you will be seeing a virtual world. You will be instructed to place your VR headset on and then they will hand you your gun. If the gun isn’t syncing up properly just speak into the attached headset microphone and let the staff member know. They quickly handed me another gun that synced no problem.
Then the game will start.
In this VR experience, you will walk around the arena space in real time with your buddies. You will see the VR worlds that you picked in the headset, but be able to move around freely. You will see your friends virtually on the headset screen, as well as the walls as you move around the levels of the game. Pretty cool experience. I’ve done a fair amount of VR in my time and this was definitely on par visually with the higher-end experiences I’ve done. The unique moving around system they have set up means next to no one has any motion sickness issues while in the headset. No one in my group felt any.
We started off with Engineerium which was a fun experience to help you get used to walking around in VR. You will, for example, walk off a cliff or walk in an upside down circle and end up on the ceiling. It’s definitely a surreal experience but amazingly fun. Everyone in my group was yelling out as you casually glance over the “edge of the world”, even though of course your feet are flat on the floor the whole time. This is definitely a fun experience for somebody who’s new VR and hasn’t had the experience of walking around in it.
Outbreak Origins Review
We then played Outbreak Origins which was the shooting game. This is Left 4 Dead come to real life. You’re not allowed to run in the game but you’re definitely supposed to move. There will be a few rooms in each level section and waves of zombies will start attacking you. Your teammates will be right beside you in helping to hold the waves off. The zombies will come fast and furious so make sure to remember to switch between your shotgun weapon and your assault rifle via the button on the gun. There are also special weapons that you can pick up that will appear in gold circles that are really helpful.
Sometimes the zombies will run dive at you and let me tell you it gets your heart pumping! It’s a totally immersive experience with waves of zombies and different location levels happening back to back. I occasionally bumped into some of my teammates in ‘real life’ but there was lots of warning and beeping noises to tell me it was about to happen. Nobody is running or jumping so nobody got injured of course. It was a totally fun, gaming experience of killing zombies with my friends. Exactly what has been missing in the VR gaming world.
At the end of the adventure, you make your way into the exit room for the recap of the experience and removal of your gear. You can see how you did against your teammates and against the high score board. A detailed summary will also be emailed to you with stats like how many headshots you made and how far you walked around. There is water available and if you moved around enough you might need it. It’s a bit of a workout.
Virtual Galaxies Powered by Zero Latency
The technology has been all set up by Zero Latency. This parent company from Australia has franchises venues in over 13 countries and hundreds of thousands of playthroughs. This means the system is fully tested and will provide you a seamless stable environment of VR gaming. This also means that if you are not located in Toronto area, there might be one near you, so give it a search!
Virtual Galaxies Pricing
Virtual Galaxies pricing currently is in two tiers – a 45 minute session and a 60 minute session. In both instances, 15 minutes is attributed to the briefing and suit up, so you effectively do approximately 30 minutes and 45 minutes of the free roaming VR experiences. You can book your session right on the website.
The price is $49.99+HST for the 45 minute session and $79.99+HST for the 60 minute session.
The price is reasonable for what you’re getting out of the experience as other VR experiences last roughly 7 to 10 minutes and cost just as much in some instances. They also have party pricing that allows you to use the included party room, board games, and other all you can play features. Inquire for pricing.
Getting to Virtual Galaxies
Virtual Galaxies is located in a suburb of Toronto at 2301 Royal Windsor Drive, Mississauga, Ontario. It’s on a side road, with not much on street signage, so make sure when you see the big to 2301 Royal Windsor Drive as shown here, that you turn at that road.
Final Thoughts on Virtual Galaxies Review
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So this happened in #Toronto … Awesome time with some multi player free roaming #vr Full review coming on my blog shortly.. 😁😁 @virtualgalaxies . . . . #instagood #virtualreality #virtualrealityglasses #virtualrealityworld #virtualrealitybox #virtualrealityheadset #virtualrealitygames #virtualrealityiphone #vrbox #virtualrealityexperience #virtualrealityarcade #virtualrealitygaming #virtualrealitytour #virtualrealitygame #virtualreality360 #virtualrealitygoggles #vrglasses #htcvive #virtualrealityrooms #virtualrealitysale #oculus
I was very impressed with the VR gaming experience here at Virtual Galaxies. Overall the backpack was not heavy or too hot. I got no fatigue on my head from wearing the headset either. Everything is pretty lightweight. I hope they can add haptic feedback (vibrating) vests in the future to add to the experience. The games are fun and explore the different parts of VR. If you do this with a group of your friends you’re sure to have a good time laughing, moving around and shooting things. I look forward to seeing what new options and games come from Virtual Galaxies in the future. Check out their webpage for all the details here – Virtual Galaxies
Enter to win a Virtual Galaxies Pass for You and your Friends!
Enter to win a VR gaming session for you and up to 7 of your friends! Comment on the blog with what game you would like to see made into VR or a reason why you want to win this VR prize package. You then can tweet, follow in instagram or facebook or other social media items to get more entries. You must have you own transportation to the Virtual Galaxies location. Please review terms and conditions. Good luck! 😀