Caliban Below is a short story experienced in VR on your HTC Vive or Vive Pro headset, released free of charge. The game is set in the same world as "The Abbot's Book Demo" from Blackthorn Media, also a free VR-based short story currently not playable on macOS.
About Caliban Below
Storytelling in VR is very effective. It feels like you've been transported to a new place and time. As far as Caliban Below is concerned, the sense of presence is nothing short of amazing. As per the creator's description:
"The sun will not rise, just endless moons - and you, Caliban, must try to learn why you have become trapped in a dream. It is 1680, Northern Italy. You are the last heir of a noble lineage, struggling to understand your dark inheritance. Explore the ruins of the family estate, and the incredible realm below, seeking clues to your past, and to the events that severed you from your family long ago. The darkness below reaches back centuries, and your place in this story is about to become terrifyingly clear."
VR graphical fidelity is getting better
I won't get into the plot details but it amazes me when software of this quality is released for free on Steam. Although only virtual, I quite literally feel like I am in old Italy with Caliban Below. There many graphical improvements over their initial "Abbot's Book Demo" release from 2 years ago that help do an even better job of making you feel present in the universe they have created. VR applications are starting to trickle onto macOS and if Caliban Below is the caliber we can expect, we are in for a great time.
If you haven't yet tried a full-fledged VR headset with 6 degrees of freedom tracking and room scale movement, then you are truly missing out. It's difficult to describe and yet when you try it, you get it. In fact whenever I am about to demo one of my VR headsets such as the Vive, Oculus Rift, or the PSVR, my favourite thing to say to a first time user is "it's better than you expect it to be". And so far everyone I've demoed them to say that I've been correct with that claim.
What about you? Have you tried VR yet? Let us know in the comments!
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