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Gunheart - Game review

Game released Jul 31, 2017

VrOne Rating
79%
User Ratings
70%
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Gunheart

Jason reviews Stormland
Review by: Pedro
Posted on: 02-04-2020
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About Gunheart

Gunheart. A single player and co-op RPG action-adventure shooter, developed by Drifter Entertainment for the Oculus Rift, Rift S, HTC Vive, Valve Index and Windows Mixed Reality. The game is rated for players aged 12+

Game Languages: English (US), French (Canada), German, Korean, Spanish (Mexico)

Expected gamplay: Approximately 8 - 12 hours


What is Gunheart?

Well, don't be put off by the cheesy name. Trust us. It's not the name that counts, it's the game. If you own a VR headset and love shooters, and role-playing games (RPGs), this is the game for you!

Game type and VR Support

Gunheart is a fast-paced, RPG shooter built specifically for desktop PC and VR platforms. Play solo, multiplayer, or online co-op with friends. Oh! And before I forget, Gunheart is also cross-platform, meaning that your teammates can join in no matter which platform they own. 

Gunheart utilises full motion control and can be played standing or seated. The game supports full cross-play between some of VR’s leading headsets: the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Windows Mixed Reality head mounted devices (HMDs). For the best gameplay experience, we recommend playing standing up.

Gunheart is a stunning game set on the Planet Fortune somewhere in a distant galaxy. You play as a robotic bounty hunter with a passion for blasting giant alien insects to kingdom come and earning bounties to upgrade yourself... or your rig, as it's referred to in-game. 

The more experienced you become, the more you are rewarded for in-game play. You’ll get extra cash, bonuses, upgrades and mods for your weapons. The more kills and cash kegs you destroy, the quicker you can upgrade your arsenal, and shields to take on the more challenging levels.

Gun upgrades and Mods

Bent Horizon (aka The Hub)

The Gunheart universe is controlled via Palco's Brainspace interface. It's where all new players are brought when they first fire up the game. Within Brainspace, you’ll learn the basics of controlling your rig.

You begin Gunheart at the Hub on Bent Horizon. Technically, the hub is the virtual game server. Here, you can chat and interact with other players from across the globe. It's not only an interesting place, it’s also an integral part of the game. The Hub consists of seven key areas. In summary, you have;

  1. The bar, located in the central area. You can grab yourself a free drink, and throw some crockery around...alongside the occasional fish!
  2. Within the outer perimeters of Bent Horizon you have GUNSTR, a high-tech store for purchasing weapons and mods. Choose from a variety of guns, upgrades and mods to increase your firepower.
  3. GUNSTR Shooting Range, accessible from the GUNSTR shop, in the top right portion of the holographic display. This shooting range is the perfect place to start if you're a newbie. Choose from a large array of weapons, and get some target practice in. It's important to know the benefits that each weapon has to offer before you spend any of your hard-earned cash. All your shooting statistics are collected by Palco and your performance can be viewed on the leaderboard. 
  4. At Palco's Brainspace, you can change the look of your robotic avatar, view your core stats and upgrade your armor and shields. So whether you want to add some bling to your rig or to protect yourself from your enemies, get to Palco's!
  5. Mini bug holographic museum. It's small, don't get me wrong! But it's well worth exploring this little gem. The museum will get you up close with the enemy, and give you some advice on some that you'll encounter in the game.
  6. Job Goblin. This is probably the most important area in the Hub. Here, you’ll find several missions to choose from; Story missions, side missions, locales, and enemies. Go at it solo, or better still: co-op with friends. There's also a Person Versus Person (PVP) area for venting your anger on other players. Brawl and go free-for-all with friends or one-on-one in the deathmatch arena.
  7. Finally, there's the all-important loot game Payola Saurus, referred to by our proudly named 'Game-Geek Review Team' (GGRT) as Waka-doo. After every mission, don't forget to visit Payola Saurus and play the loot game to collect bonuses, power-ups, and any additional loot you earned while playing. Simply stand near the centre and smash whatever comes out of the ball chute.

Weapons. We love weapons!

Gunheart guns


Check out the official Gunheart trailer


Never-ending content 

Palco posts new missions weekly on the Job Goblin board. Some of these can be quite challenging, like restricting the use of a particular weapon or only allowing headshot kills. It appears that Palco updates the board on Sundays.

The Enemies

If you're into entomology and are a true insect lover, Gunheart may not be your cup of tea. Us bounty hunters aren't into getting up close to study these pesky bugs... just blasting them to smithereens! Sorry, but life's too short to get friendly with this bunch. Let’s take a further look at the enemies you’re likely to encounter.

Grunts 

Grunts are just one of protectors of the Anthromite forces. At first glance this bug appears to be kind of cute. What with its dinky little wings, short legs and bulbous body, you almost want to keep it. Unfortunately for them, Grunts are simply cannon fodder and can only really do damage up close. 

Nevertheless, these comical critters are a force to be reckoned with. They’ll lull you into a false sense of security when there's just a few, but then all hell breaks loose when the whole clan suddenly appear out of the blue. Then, they’ll relentlessly attack from all directions, puking out copious amounts of toxic green gunge. You’ll literally feel like a piece of meat as the Grunts attempt to digest you.

There are two types of Grunts: The Blue Bottles, described above and the slightly more intelligent and destructive Red-eyed Grunts. These Red-eyed Grunts not only spew toxic gunge, they carry contact mines, kamikaze style! Don’t let ‘em get close.

Strength-wise, they're not much of a challenge. For total group carnage, fire in multiple rounds from the Mimecaster gun or a single round from the powerful rocket launcher... “Hasta la vista, baby!” 

Grunts

Buzzkills 

We all know hornets are big, ugly flying bugs with nasty faces...But in Gunheart, they’re even nastier, standing at about 3 foot tall. Buzzkills aren’t the cleverest of the Anthromite forces, but they can be really annoying when you’re taking on the other enemies. These flying critters don’t take much to shoot down - if you manage to hit them that is. If you’re struggling, there are a few different ways you can take them out. The Carbine pistol is the obvious choice, but for a little fun you could try the Multi-tool to pluck them from the sky or to create a wider kill range. You can also try the Minecaster, releasing your trigger at the right moment to destroy several at a time.Buzzkills. Flying bugs

Hoppers 

There are several variants of Hoppers, including the winged type that can hop around, similar to the way you teleport from point to point. There are two main types of Hopper: the grey-blue one and the nimble red Hopper. Be careful with the red ones, they’re more intelligent and harder to kill... Likewise, some Hoppers even have amour and pose an even greater challenge.Hoppers

The weapons Hoppers use vary from shotguns, and grenade guns to the lethal sniper rifle. 

Tip: If you get caught in a cluster of sniper fire, keep moving and you’ll have a far better chance of keeping your head.

Ridgebacks 

These armoured critters are big, and we mean BIG. Let them get up close and you’re a goner. The Ridgebacks’ firepower comes in the form of a deadly green gas bomb. On the flip side, occasionally some Hoppers and Grunts will attack it, drawing the Ridgeback’s focus from you. Take the beast down with the Minecaster or Rocket Launcher.Ridgebacks

Dropships 

Dropships, or giant flying squid as we like to call them, drop off enemies while firing a  powerful laser. Move quickly to avoid the laser beams or you’ll be sliced up into sushi in no time. A quick kill is paramount to your survival so take it down ASAP using your arsenal of combo weapons. The Chaingun, Minecaster and Rocket Launcher are our favourites.

Drop Ships

Zombugs 

Zombugs are undoubtedly the most annoying and challenging of the Anthromite forces. We hate them! They hone in to you by teleporting. Just when you have one in your sights and start firing, it’ll vanish and reappear slightly closer by, until it comes face-to face and impales you with its tongue. Watch out for the orange flash, that’s when you know a Zombug is about to teleport. Kill ‘em quickly with some headshots.

Zombugs

Overmind

The Overmind is closely guarded by the Anthromite forces. Their existence depends on keeping it alive, no matter the cost. If you ever even spot the Overmind, let alone get close to it, you’re in grave danger. Ready yourself for a full onslaught from the best of the Anthromites.

The Overmind

Games settings and extras:

The pop-up HUD takes a little getting used to, although it's quickly mastered. We suggest you play around with it a little and familiarize yourself with changing weapons. 

Verdict

Gunheart is simply fantastic and shines in so many ways: The environments and enemies are equally impressive in detail, as is the atmospheric fog. Combining these stunning graphics with vivid sound and a nail-biting score ratchets up the tension. So much so, that almost every level left us gobsmacked. Gameplay-wise, it’s clear that much thought went into Gunheart. Hats off to Drifter, the developer. 

Gunheart features 15 stunning, almost open-world game levels. However, most seem to take place in the same general area, a rocky mountainside. They’re filled with a few generic looking bases, floating cargo containers and some caverns filled with alien bugs. It’s not a huge deal, but it would have been nice to see a more diverse selection of levels. 

Having said that, as the levels are still breathtakingly atmospheric and intuitively constructive in game play, you’ll soon forget these quibbles.

The game sounds accompany the gameplay very well. You know when an attack is imminent when you hear the tension building in the music and vice versa when things start to cool down. We love the distant sound effects that the rocket launcher and minecaster weapon make when the shells explode in the distance. This adds further realism, and excitement to the game.

Stunning graphics

In particular, the Oculus Rift and Valve Index, which include integrated headphones, work well with the 3D surround sound. The built-in microphones make it easy to communicate with teammates. 

The teleportation works very well. We loved that you can quickly teleport almost anywhere, even high up in the mountainous rocks, to gain a better vantage point. The team did have some issues with Gunheart, but to be honest the positives so far outweigh the negatives, I'm not even going to mention them. Bloggers and critics are free to express their own opinions in the comment section below.

Game Developer - Creator of Gunheart

The Gunheart VR game was developed by Drifter, a dedicated team with years of experience building the platforms that make AR and VR possible. In our opinion, Drifter have built some of the best damn VR games we've ever seen! Also, check out Rise of the Gunters, a single and online multiplayer game coming soon to muliple VR platforms. Let us know what you think. See Rise of the Gunters here.

Buy Gunheart from the Oculus store or Steam

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