The Lost Bear is co-developed by Fabrik games and OddBug Studio and published by Fabrik Games and is available for PSVR.
When you first sit down and put on the PSVR headset and dive into The Lost Bear you know you are in for a treat. Sitting down on the comfy chair in front of a large stage area is mesmerising. Lets see how it fairs under scrutiny.
I will admit that it took me a little while to find the correlation of the games title – The Lost Bear – and what was happening on screen. However it suddenly dawned on me about 15 minutes into the game.
You control Walnut, and your aim is to rescue your small teddy BEAR (!) from the Toysnatcher and get back to your Brother. You jump, run and slide to climb ledges and to reach other platforms, chasing down the little critter carrying your teddy bear, taunting you with it. Always staying just out of reach.
Moving through the game you come up against harder and more complex puzzles, one that took me a few minutes was a simple Simon Says type puzzle. Where in the stage area you are seated in was three bells, the same three bells were also in the game space and you had to fire your slingshot at them matching the pattern. A seemingly difficult puzzle became a whole lot easier.
Later on in The Lost Bear your Dualshock controller turns into a flashlight and you have to traverse a number of ledges and jumps to turn on the power. All the while the area around you reacting to the action going on on stage.
My favourite part of the control system is probably the most simplistic. When you come up against a mechanism of some kind, be it a wheel you have to turn, or a series of levers to push and pull. A quick press of the Square button brings out a nifty little platform from under your chair that you can place your controller into and control the action on screen.
All in all the gameplay is brilliant and enticing. It’s not very long though and this can leave you wanting more.
As with all PSVR games you are never going to get 4K graphics, but what you do get is a beautifully rendered landscape for you to sit in and play from. The stage is visibly large as are some of the areas you find yourself in. Just take a moment and swing your head all the way around just to see the detail that goes into each and every one of them. From the creepy night animals eyes that light up when you stare into the forest, to the car lights that illuminate when you are in the junkyard level.
Whilst playing there were no glitches or bugs, which shows that while this game is simplistic, it has been thought out brilliantly.
The graphic style is a mix of 3D and 2D scenes, very much akin to other games such as Limbo, although with lovely colours that give the indication that all the action is taking place in Autumn.
I think that if this game wasn’t a PSVR title it wouldn’t have the same impact just being on a flat screen. You really do feel at times that you are there watching the action unfold, only you are in control.
The audio on the game is absolutely lovely. There are no other adjectives that I could use. The Lost Bear has a great soundtrack and the emotion behind the songs in certain areas definitely draws you into the gameplay and makes you start to feel sorry for Walnut.
The sounds in the game are brilliant with the PSVR’s 3D audio, you can really pinpoint when something is happening. There were a few times that I thought I could feel something behind me purely because the music was affecting me that much!
Unfortunately this is where The Lost Bear gets let down. It is incredibly short, now usually when we say that we are talking a few hours, maybe even four hours. Unfortunately The Lost Bear can be completed in just over an hour. To go along with the fact that there is a single ending and no puzzles that are hard enough to make you stop playing, you could complete it in a single session. That isn’t to say that you should avoid this game, on the contrary. You should pick this game up as it is a unique use of the PSVR and is great to give people a taste of what the PSVR can do.
Comfort wise while playing the game, because you are sat still and the action is all going on in front like you were watching TV I didn’t feel any motion sickness at all. I also would love to know if anyone ever gets any sickness while playing this game. With a play through being as short as it is you won’t become uncomfortable while playing the game which is also a bonus.
So great visuals, brilliant audio all leads to point at a great addition to your PSVR library, although short. The Lost Bear receives the Thumb Culture Gold Award.
Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.