We’re working our way through a comprehensive list of reviews for the PS VR2 launch line up and next on our list is Song in the Smoke Rekindled, which is a survival game developed and published by 17-BIT. Originally released on PS VR, PC VR and headsets such as the Quest 2, the game has now made its way onto the brand new PS VR2 headset with a number of upgrades and gameplay enhancement to really take full advantage of the new tech.
Set in a prehistoric world, players must navigate through a lush and dangerous environment, gather resources, and fend off hostile creatures to survive. Owners of the original title on PS VR were treated to a free PS VR2 upgrade but is it worth your time for another playthrough or adding to your launch title list if you haven’t played the game already? Read on to find out in our full review.
The game’s story positions you as a hunter who wakes up in a prehistoric world with no memory of your past. As you navigates through the environment, you uncover clues about the world you find yourself in and slowly realise how you came to be here. Not to give away too much, we must admit, the story is not particularly groundbreaking, but it does serve as a sufficient backdrop for the gameplay and helps to create a strong sense of immersion.
Song in the Smoke Rekindled’s gameplay revolves around gathering resources, crafting tools and weapons, and hunting animals for food. The game features a stamina system that depletes as the player performs actions such as running, jumping, and attacking. Players must manage their stamina effectively, as running out of stamina can leave them vulnerable to attacks from predators.
The game’s combat system is simple but effective. Players can use a variety of weapons, including bows, spears, and clubs, to take down animals and defend themselves against hostile creatures. The game’s AI is impressive, with animals reacting realistically to the player’s movements and actions.
One of the game’s standout features is its crafting system. Players can gather resources such as wood, stone, and animal hides to craft weapons, tools, and clothing. The crafting system is intuitive and easy to use, with players able to combine different resources to create a wide range of items, all while keeping a look out for any stalking beasts in the long grass!
Another notable aspect of the gameplay is the game’s survival mechanics. Players must manage their hunger and thirst levels, as well as their body temperature, to avoid death. The game’s world features a day and night cycle, with the night bringing dangerous creatures and harsh weather conditions. Players must build shelters and light fires to stay warm and safe at night.
This game definitely doesn’t hold your hand but, in doing so, really helps to create the ‘survive or die’ theme which we imagine the team at 17-Bit where trying to achieve. It can get a little full on at times but again, this adds to the overall immersion of what is, first and foremost, a survival game, so credit must be given to the team for their dedication to the cause.
Song in the Smoke Rekindled’s upgraded visuals on PS VR2 are impressive, with a lush and detailed environment that immerses players in the prehistoric world. The game features a variety of environments, including forests, swamps, and mountains, each with its own unique flora and fauna.
Can you dig it!? Song in the Smoke Rekindled is launching February 22 on #PSVR2! pic.twitter.com/NOjzYVcAvn
— 17-BIT – SONG IN THE SMOKE REKINDLED for PSVR2 (@17_BIT) February 6, 2023
The game’s character models are also well done, with the player character and hostile creatures looking particularly impressive. It definitely has an interesting art style that, at times, almost feels like a living canvas with thick oil paint used to bring to life the surroundings and inhabitants. Even your hands portray thick strokes of paint with the light from the sun or your torch showing every crevice or minor groove in the brush strokes. It’s unique and beautiful at the same time.
17-Bit have done a great job pushing the visual front for the title with thanks to the increased power of the PS5 and the PS VR2’s eye tracking capabilities which allows for foveated rendering. Basically, wherever you look in this game, that’s where most of the detail will be. It’s very effective at ensuring a pin sharp image throughout your playthrough, no matter how intense the action gets.
Overall, Song in the Smoke Rekindled is an impressive PS VR2 survival game that offers a compelling gameplay experience. The game’s story is nothing groundbreaking, but it serves as a sufficient backdrop for the gameplay. The game’s crafting system is intuitive and easy to use, and the survival mechanics add an extra layer of depth to the gameplay.
The game definitely looks its best yet on the PS VR2, with a lush and detailed environment that immerses players in the prehistoric world. The game’s use of the new headset’s unique gameplay features like the adaptive triggers and haptic headset rumble technology also adds to the immersion.
While the game’s combat system is simple, it is effective, and the game’s AI is impressive, with animals reacting realistically to the player’s movements and actions. The game’s survival mechanics add an extra layer of depth to the gameplay, with players having to manage their hunger, thirst, and body temperature to avoid death.
Song in the Smoke Rekindled Pricing & Availability
Song in the Smoke Rekindled is available for PS VR2 for €29.99 on the official PlaySationand, as mentioned at the start, owners of the PS VR version get a free upgrade to the PS VR2 version.
REVIEW: Song in the Smoke: Rekindled (PS VR2)
Overall, Song in the Smoke Rekindled is an impressive PS VR2 survival game that offers a compelling gameplay experience.