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Sega’s Infamous ‘Desert Bus’ Is Coming To VR

Run for you life, one of gaming’s most grueling titles is about to hit VR.

You ever have that moment where you find out a bit of news, but can’t immediately decide whether it’s good or bad? That’s exactly how I felt when learning that one of Sega’s most infamous releases, Desert Bus, is being rereleased for VR. Oh good god…

Originally developed as a mini game within the unreleased Sega CD title Penn & Teller’s Smoke & Mirrors, Desert Bus is a painfully realistic bus simulation that tasks players with keeping their vehicle on the road during a real-time trip from Tucson Arizona to Las Vegas, Nevada. How long is the journey you ask? Eight hours. An actual eight-hour in-game drive from point A to point B. No going off the road, no going over 45 mph, no pausing…

Well if that sounds like the kind of action you’d love to get into on a Saturday night, then you’re going to love Desert Bus VR. Available now for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive via SteamVR, the immersive recreation of the 1998 cult-classic brings back all the monotonous steering and bland sightseeing you know and love, in addition to some thrilling new bonuses. Along with some slick new remastered graphics, you’ll will be able to tap an interactive air freshener while parked at a bus stop, honk the buses horn and even tune through an array of radio stations including a program by Penn himself.

However the most significant update has to be the inclusion of multiplayer. Pile up to three of your friends in the back and make that long journey a little less lonely. Passengers can sit, wave and even toss wads of paper at the driver in an attempt to drive him off the road and restart the route from the starting point. Because, you know, your best friends are evil. Besides these fresh additions, it’s the same unnecessarily boring title we all remember and love. Love? Yeah I’d say love.

Despite its repetitive and at times mind-numbing moments, Desert Bus has managed to instill itself in gaming history. This is due in large part to its popularity within charity live streams. Most recently, the Desert Bus For Hope charity marathon managed to raise $650,000 for Child’s Play, a program that provides various games and toys for hospitalized children. I genuinely can’t wait to see what will happen when this new VR rendition enters the charity streaming scene. Get ready for a lot of money and a lot of full bladders.

Desert Bus VR is available for free via SteamVR now.

About the Scout

Kyle Melnick

Kyle is a writer for VRScout also working in new media production. He's also a part-time bounty hunter.

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