Hide & Spook: The Haunted Alchemist

Hide & Spook: The Haunted Alchemist is a party game designed for three players, The main character, the alchemist wears the HTC Vive headset, while the other two people play as ghosts and use the Vive motion controller to tell by the vibration of the controller where the candles are located and extinguish them. The alchemist needs to stare at a ghost for a few seconds in order to dispel it. If the alchemist catches all ghost he wins, if the ghosts extinguish all the candles, the ghost side wins.

Hide & Spook: The Haunted Alchemist First Impressions

Alchemist lab 3D scene

Hide & Spook: The Haunted Alchemist is a unique virtual reality party game and I can't recall any other game that uses this mechanics. The game was designed for three players. One guy plays as the alchemist, and he is the one who is using the VR headset. The other two players play as ghosts. Each one of them has an HTC Vive touch controller.

The ghosts goal is to extinguish the candles that are scattered across the room, while the alchemist goal is to catch them by starring at them and therefore dispelling them from this earthly dimension. The alchemist doesn't move, he has to stay in the middle of the room and use gaze to stare at each ghost a few seconds in order to catch it.

The ghosts move around in order to avoid being detected and caught, and if the ghosts able to extinguish up all the candles in the alchemist's lab, the ghosts' team win. So as you probably figures out, the HTC Vive tracked motion controllers aren't used by the person who wears the headset, but by the other two players - what an ingenious idea!

So if the ghost players don't wear a headset, how they can actually see where the candles are located? well, they need to 'feel' it, so they need to use the controller vibration to lead them to where candles are located. The controller will vibrate faster as you get closer to a candle. Also keep in mind that the candles are necessarily located in your eyesight position, then can be located in and upper or lower position, which means finding the candles isn't as straight forward as you might think. Once the ghost player feels that he is near a candle, he needs to press the trigger button to extinguish the candle.

To make it even more fun and add a higher replay value, the layout of the alchemist's lab changes every time you play, so there is no way for the ghost players to remember where the candles are located. 

It might sound hard to catch ghosts that move so fast across the room, so the developer added a nice little feature. If a ghost moves very quickly across the room, the leave a tell-tale trail behind it, which can tell the alchemist player where the ghost is located - so you need to move slowly if you don't want to be detected so easily - a nice stealth element to this game, so cool.

Another great feature is that the scale or the room was designed to match your current setup, but the developer recommends using a 2m by 2m play area, although on the Steam page it mentioned that the game requires at least 2mx1.5m play area, so that's the minimum room-scale requirement.

This is a great family and party game, one that you can play with your friends when they come visit you and want to play with your Vive headset. But that's not all. There is an observer mode, who allows other people who aren't playing the game to see the game on a regular TV or computer screen.

The graphics in this game are really nice and alongside an excellent  music by Aaron C Edwards, it really helps brings that enchanted spooky alchemists lab to life and contribute to an amazing VR experience. This is in no doubt, one of the most interesting games I've came across lately. It really brings out the best of virtual reality to party games. Your friends can actually take part of the game in an active and really enjoyable manner.

In addition to that, the game is available via Steam for free. A simple yet really unique and innovative local multiplayer game for both kids and adults alike.  So what are you waiting for, head on to Steam and download it now, I already did. Just a few megabytes and you are up to a super fun experience and don't forget to invite your friends, they'll love it.

Awarded for an Impressive VR Game

Hide & Spook: The Haunted Alchemist Videos