In Front of Your Eyes is one of the most surprising games of 2021 and not just a cheap gimmick. Communicating with a story just by flashing is an amazing novel, and GoodbyeWorld Games uses that input method to its advantage to intimately tell an inspiring (and heartbreaking) story. And while it is inventive, the PlayStation VR2 port of the game is the best way to play it, because it more accurately realizes the mechanics it is built on.
This is because getting blinks in other versions of the game is not always consistent despite GoodbyeWorld’s efforts. Both the PC and mobile versions require decent lighting, and that’s a compromise that’s not always possible. The sun will set. The rooms are not always well lit. External cameras are not magical pieces of technology that can always interpret the correct input or even capture them and that caveat means that In Front of Your Eyes can only be fully enjoyed in certain scenarios. It’s possible to avoid these issues by playing without the camera plugged in, but that’s not what the game is supposed to do.
Having the camera built into the PS VR2 headset means there’s less chance of technical tomfoolery; it is always in the same position with more or less the same light. And this change is important because it’s much cleaner allowing the unique flashing mechanic to take center stage. It works almost flawlessly within virtual reality and seems made for this medium. However, it’s a bit surprising (and a bit of a missed opportunity) that it doesn’t take full advantage of the headset’s eye-tracking capabilities, so even though it tracks blinks, users still need to point the reticle with their head.
The immersive qualities of VR also help the way In Front of Your Eyes expresses his narrative because it is about seeing the world through Benjamin’s eyes. Going through his life and being able to look around more smoothly puts the player in his shoes and given how much the story is about his perspective, that transfer is another way that this port proving that the game is designed for virtual reality.
Not everything is always translated into the player’s environment, however, because only important fragments occur in a black void, which means that looking around is not always fruitful. However, that limitation is not a distraction, but something that forces players to focus on what is important. It also makes sense because players re-create these memories as ethereal snapshots of the past.
That incredible concept is still in my heart In Front of Your Eyes. The natural performances are strong enough to make up for the crude character models and the metaphor with blinking time jumps is an incredibly clever way to deliver a unique game mechanic and story. . It’s all great and results in an emotionally rich story that doesn’t overstay its welcome. However, these aspects are always unique and show that the game doesn’t need VR to be great; it’s only better in VR. Sometimes it can be glitchy, as sometimes it resets progress, soft locks, or fails to pop a trophy, but these are ultimately insignificant inconveniences that come with playing one of the most unique which told game stories in the medium best suited for it. .
Disclosure: The publisher provided a PlayStation 5 copy for us In Front of Your Eyes part. Played on version 1.001.000.