Venture forth on a nightmarish pilgrimage through the Underworld as a blood-thirsty viking.
You are a viking warrior and you’ve just witnessed your brother eviscerated by a single fiery breath from a mighty dragon. Your eyes widen, your heart rate begins to race out of control, and every muscle in your body tightens up, as the giant winged beast that just killed your brother begins swooping towards you with rage in its eyes.
Then everything goes black.
You wake up and find yourself in Valhalla, the land of the dead. Here you’ll venture on a grueling journey through the underworld as you seek to avenge your brother. Along the way you’ll face a wide range of terrifying foes, such as demons and wraiths. In order to survive your journey, you’ll need to dismember and decapitate seemingly-endless waves of enemies roaming throughout the afterlife.
With every successful strike from your weapon, blood spews from your victims entry wounds. Exposed vertebrae and bones covered with bloody meat can be seen extruding from their limp bodies. You pick up a dismembered limb from one of your unfortunate victims and use it to beat another enemy into submission, their broken body flailing with constrained rag doll movements before slumping to the ground in a lifeless heap. It’s pretty gruesome.
This is Shadow of Valhalla, a dynamic RPG combat game from developer/publisher Chicken Waffle that promises one of the bloodiest, most visceral immersive experiences available on VR headsets.
While past titles such as Arizona Sunshine and Blood Trail each feature their fair share of violence and gore, neither are able to provide the realistic physics-based combat featured in more recent releases, such as Boneworks, Half-Life: Alyx, and The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners. The Chicken Waffle crew, who are big fans of these types of VR experiences, saw this as a challenge, taking it upon themselves to build a VR experience that delivered an entirely new level of graphic fidelity, especially when it comes to gore.
During an interview with VRScout, Finn Staber, CEO and Founder of Chicken Waffle, said, “When I first got out of the Army, I actually got a biology degree with a focus on human anatomy and physiology. Plus, I’ve always enjoyed gory movies and series like Game of Thrones, which was a big inspiration to this game, as well,” Staber continues, “So, we referenced anatomical bi-sections of the human body, and watched some of the coolest melee kills in popular horror movies.”
A lot of work and iterations went into creating realistic physics-based combat with weighted weapons and enemy dismemberment. Thanks to Staber’s military background, education, and love for VR, Shadow of Valhalla hits every goal set by the Chicken Waffle team.
I should also mention that Shadow of Valhalla was built during the COVID-19 quarantine.
“We did our best to closely match the advanced VR controls in Half Life: Alyx. The functionality Valve perfected has set the standard for VR locomotion and interaction. So, we did our best to pay homage to their amazing work,” said Staber.
Chicken Waffle will be releasing Shadow of Valhalla on PC VR, PS VR and a yet-to-be-unannounced 5G wireless VR headset.
Image Credit: Chicken Waffle