Test and comparison: Star Wars Pinball VR-Quest vs. Steam,
Can the Quest and Steam VR versions of Star Wars Pinball VR convince? We have tested both for you.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away… Okay, this is more about our blue globe and an event not so long ago. That’s when the developers at Zen Studios promised us a terrific Star Wars pinball game, where we can also deck out our own fancave with various Star Wars memorabilia. My expectations were very high after the first trailers and as a fan of the movie series I couldn’t resist the charm of the galactic ball pusher. Whether it could fulfill my expectations, however, you will see in the further course of the review.
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A gamepad in 2021?
I always thought since the Oculus Touch release in 2016, normal gamepads would have disappeared from VR gaming. Especially for titles that offer full VR controller support according to the developers. At least on the Quest. However, this is not the case with the Steam version. The Index and Vive controllers are not even supported by the game, and the Touch controllers are not recognized with Virtual Desktop either. Only when you play the Steam version via Air-Link or Oculus Link the Quest’s touch controllers will be detected. And even if you want to play it with a gamepad, there are also problems with newer Xbox controllers not being recognized. In any case, there is still a lot to do. So far, there is no official statement from the developer studio on whether this will be fixed with an update.
Embarrassingly ported pixel mash or successful upgrade?
Just when we are reporting more problems. The graphics and textures are also a reason for returning the Steam version for many buyers. The Quest version looks quite nice and the Steam version offers a bit finer textures here and there, but if you don’t have a direct comparison, both versions look quite identical. Also because many textures of the Steam version looking outdated many fans probably would have rather wished for a graphical masterpiece. Some of the character models could have jumped directly from a Playstation 3 to the PC. Also the tables could have used some more love in the graphical area and look more like a digital showcase instead of a real pinball table. Attached I pack you some graphic comparisons of the two versions, so you can see the extent for yourself.
Fancave? More like a barely interactive closet
The idea with the fancave is quite nice. But if you expect a freely designable room where you can touch various objects from the Star Wars universe, you are sadly mistaken. The designable room consists of a few fixed points, where you can exchange and place permanently placed figures or objects. The entire room is also rather small and leaves a lot to be desired. It’s still fun, though, and an R2D2 jukebox with many well-known songs from the Star Wars universe rounds out the whole thing. Nevertheless, I miss a bit of interaction with the objects that can be placed.
Conclusion: Obi-Wan would rotate in his grave. Quest version nevertheless acceptable
Unfortunately, the Steam version can only be recommended to a limited extent at the moment. It offers the same scope of gameplay as the Quest version, but with various problems, so that the PC version is inferior in comparison. In general, the game is still fun and offers a large selection of tables and graphic effects for the price of just under 25 Bucks. The fancave, which you can set up yourself, is also quite nice, even if it is rather small in scope and doesn’t offer many design options. I probably had too high expectations for the game, which unfortunately weren’t quite fulfilled. If the team of Zen Studios should take care of some bugs, I will gladly change my verdict about the game. But at this point, I only give the green light to the Quest version of Star Wars Pinball VR. It still offers the most fun without having to deal with various controller issues. I can only recommend the Steam version to people who use a Quest 2 with Air Link anyway and prefer slightly sharper textures.
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Test and comparison: Star Wars Pinball VR-Quest vs. Steam was originally published in AR/VR Journey: Augmented & Virtual Reality Magazine on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
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Author: Cat Noir VR