A survey linked on the System Shock 3 website suggests that studio Otherside Entertainment is considering developing the game for use with a VR headset.
Fans of the System Shock franchise seemed likely to never see another game in the acclaimed cyberpunk series. Although System Shock 2 proved to be a hugely influential cult hit, the title never received commercial success, with the series apparently destined to remain as a duo. Last week’s reveal that System Shock 3 is in the works proved to be a huge surprise to many – and what’s more, it seems as though the upcoming title could make use of some of the most recent technology on the market.
Developer Otherside Entertainment, a studio helmed by Paul Neurath and consisting of a number of Looking Glass Studios alumni, has hinted that System Shock 3 could be compatible with virtual reality hardware. The news, however, was not explicitly mentioned by the developer, but instead hidden over on the game’s teaser website. The page has a still of series antagonist SHODAN, together with an audioclip that says “did you think I’d forgotten you, insect?”
Clicking on the link below the picture, however, takes the user to a Survey Monkey page with a number of questions for those interested in the game. The survey asks for several details, including the player’s age, preferred gaming machine, and whether they have played either of the previous System Shock games. Finally, the survey asks the player to rate their interest in virtual reality gaming.
Depending on how it is framed, the System Shock franchise would seem to be a perfect fit for virtual reality. The game’s setting in a world full of technological and hacking advancements would fit perfectly with the fledgling hardware, whilst the previous two games allowed players to actually traverse the cyberspace. If Otherside Entertainment does choose to pursue VR development, the end results could be very interesting.
There’s also a very impressive precedent for games in the style of System Shock working well with VR technology. When VR headsets were being tested at expos, survival horror hit Alien: Isolation proved to be a real success when played using an Oculus Rift prototype. With System Shock 2 in particular seen as one of the most unnerving games of all time, use of its sequel with a VR headset may well be a terrifying experience.
It remains to be seen just how Otherside Entertainment chooses to develop the game. At the moment, details surrounding the highly-anticipated project are still thin on the ground, with no platform or estimated release period confirmed. Hopefully more information surrounding System Shock 3 will be unveiled soon – including the game’s potential for use with virtual reality.