Title: Project Lux
Release Date: June 20, 2019
Reviewed On: PSVR
Publisher: Sekai Games
Genre: VR Visual Novel
Even though it’s a few years old by now, I still consider myself new to the virtual reality scene. While I don’t personally find many reasons to play VR games, I understand that it is a growing medium and it deserves some attention. It goes to show that the best way to get me to play VR games is to combine the experience with the visual novel genre and that’s exactly what developed Spicy Tails did with Project Lux. While the game doesn’t present anything groundbreaking in the mechanic’s department, there is still a clever story full of emotion to be found between the game’s two characters.
Project Lux is set in the future where humans have given up their physical selves in order to merely exist within a digital world. Their brains and consciousness are uploaded and they can do as they please. The best part about this all is that they don’t have to worry about the day to day political and social drama of the real world. It’s safe to say that everyone is content.
However, a girl named Lux has refused to upload her body and instead does work for the government by providing them with emotions and ideas. The government uses the things she comes up with at their will and there is a balance. However, nothing is true as it seems in Project Lux as the opening dialog suggests that a murder took place. By looking through the memories of the protagonist, we see how the events leading up to the murder played out.
Project Lux realize heavily on its story because there isn’t really any game mechanics presented in the game. It’s truly an experience because the player only has to sit and watch how events unfold. While I do wish there were more elements to interact with or choices to make, Project Lux presents some great moments of storytelling throughout its hour and a half runtime.
You see, Lux doesn’t really understand what it’s like to live in the digital world. The protagonist, on the other hand, is well versed in the futuristic technology and can easily speak on its benefits. Throughout the game, the two have conversations that weigh in the pros and cons of each way of living. This is played out alongside the two discussing emotions and how to recreate them.
While in VR it’s tough to read subtitles and watch the characters’ emotions play out at the same time, I played the game a few times so that I understood the story enough to sit back and watch Lux’s expression and passion come to life from her facial expressions. The reason why this is key is that Lux is a very expressive girl. The story taps into each emotion and she must understand that emotion before she can recreate it through her art. The entire experience comes to a head during the final chapter when an emotional circus plays out before your eyes.
Graphically, I felt the Project Lux is a gorgeous game full of that anime charm. Lux’s design is cute and the developer still manages to find a subtle way to show some pantsu during dialog, it’s all in good fun though. However, I can really say the same about the room that you’re pretty much stuck in throughout the entire game. I would have enjoyed some different scenery or perhaps a way to zoom in and out since Lux spends some time in the far end of the room. Honestly, anything to move from the one place that the protagonist is sitting for the entire game.
The voice over in Project Lux is brilliant and expressive. The emotion in this story is where the game shines and the voice actors properly expressed that throughout the game. Since there is a range of emotions expressed, from love to anger, I felt that this was the best way to compliment the game’s solid writing. With that said, I experienced some missed subtitle throughout the story, which I hope gets patched in at some point.
Project Lux is a very hands-off experience throughout must of the story. It’s short and sweet and is defiantly for visual novel fans who prefer highly emotional characters with some themes of science fiction. The virtual reality aspect of the game is only taken advantage of a couple of times throughout the story and I wished that there were more ways to interact with the world around the protagonist. Also, there isn’t much to do after the game is complete which would have been the perfect time to introduce a new point of view change for a second time through the game.
Regardless of the lack of interactions in the game, Project Lux manages to tell a beautiful story as well as offer a few chances for some virtual hugs. The brilliant voice over work and writing make this game a must play for those looking for a quick and enjoyable experience.
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