Genre: action, adventure, horror
Compatibility (headsets): SteamVR, Meta Quest, PS VR2
Platforms: Steam Store, Meta Store, PlayStation Store
Minimum requirements: Processor: i7-9700K/Ryzen 7 3700 equivalent or greater, Memory: 16 GB, Graphics: RTX 2070/RX 5700 XT equivalent or greater, DirectX 12, Storage: 30 GB available space, SSD required, VR headset required
Features: singleplayer, multiplayer, co-op
Release date: December 7, 2023
Developer: Vertigo Games
After seven years of anticipation, Arizona Sunshine 2, a VR horror game, has arrived and it’s everything I could have hoped for. The sequel to the beloved zombie shooter had been highly anticipated, and I was eager to see if Vertigo Games also creators of hits like “After The Fall”, “Hell Sweeper”, “About A Fisherman’s Tale” and others had done justice to the original.
With improved graphics and lighting, an immersive crafting system, and, of course, the beloved Buddy, Arizona Sunshine 2 is sure to be an unforgettable experience.
Arizona Sunshine 2 has improved graphics and lighting compared to its predecessor. The gunplay feels better, especially with the 1911, and the dog-petting mechanics add to the experience. The zombies and gore effects were realistic, providing a gruesome and immersive experience with contorting bodies and floating zombies adding to the amusement.
It also has a well-written co-op campaign on rails, as well as a crafting system for players to use. Buddy, the well-received dog companion, was an amazing feature in the game that adds to the overall immersion.
However, there were some glitches and inconsistencies in the tracking and crafting table that needed to be fixed with patches and polish in the second half of the game.
Dialogue and Sound Design
Arizona Sunshine 2 features some interesting dialogue and sound design. There’s an aspect of a schizophrenia simulator, with overlapping dialogue providing a unique experience.
Gunplay is enhanced with realistic gun sounds and explosions, as well as references to smelling farts from the chopper pilot. The sound design helps to create an immersive atmosphere, and the gunplay feels responsive and satisfying.
Visual Quality and Platforms
The visual quality of Arizona Sunshine 2 varies across different platforms. Inconsistencies are particularly noticeable in the PCVR version, with glitches and lack of polish being more apparent. Potential improvements are available to enhance the VR performance on PC. Standalone users may require updates to reach parity with other versions in terms of visuals. Quest 3 users experience the least amount of discrepancies, while the Quest 2 version displays some issues. However, despite these inconsistencies, the visuals are still impressive, and the gore effects are particularly satisfying. Future enhancements and patches have the potential to further improve the visual quality and ensure an immersive zombie shooter experience.
Story and Characters
Though the story is relatively short, it’s incredibly engaging and well-paced. It offers an emotional depth that captures the feeling of a zombie shooter, with an adorable companion character, Buddy, to drive home the point.
There are moments of intense action as well as moments of quiet reflection that contribute to an immersive experience.
Fans of the original will be pleased with the story arc and the potential for more set pieces to further break up the gameplay.
With a single playthrough lasting around 4-5 hours, Arizona Sunshine 2 offers a relatively short but sweet experience. Some players may find the price point too high for such a short single-player experience, however, there’s plenty of content to extend gameplay.
Players can engage in multiple playthroughs or take part in the co-op and horde mode for extra challenge. The game’s length is subjective, as the story is effectively told within the 4-5 hour campaign. Meanwhile, the replayability is high thanks to the engaging gunplay and emotional zombie shooter experience.
Building on the immersive sound design of Arizona Sunshine 2, the horde mode is a similar experience to the one in the first game. It’s an intense wave-based defense mode where players must work together to survive each wave of zombies.
While it’s a solid game mode, it’s lacking in innovative strategies and tactics for surviving in horde mode. The replay value of horde mode could be improved through the addition of new features and challenges.
In comparison to games like Half-Life: Alyx and Call of Duty’s Zombies mode, Arizona Sunshine 2’s horde mode falls short in terms of providing an intense experience.
The wave-based gameplay can become repetitive, lacking the innovation that other VR games have provided. There are moments of tension and exhilaration, but they’re few and far between. The difficulty of the horde mode isn’t as challenging as the other games.
While it does have its moments, it’s ultimately not as satisfying as other VR experiences.
Reflection and Impact
I personally reflected on the experience of playing Arizona Sunshine 2 and the emotional impact it had. The potential emotional impact of a dog getting injured in the game was particularly noteworthy. I appreciated the character of Buddy, the dog, as one of the ‘goodest boys’ in video games. This gave the game a unique element that other VR games may lack.
The narrator also mentioned their own dog breed, half pitbull, and half shih tzu, and this made the experience more personal. At the end of the game, the narrator expressed their appreciation to the viewers for their time and wished them luck in life.
Overall, I highly recommend Arizona Sunshine 2 as a worthy successor and sequel to the original Arizona Sunshine. It’s Vertigo Games’ learning and improvement from their previous games that shines through in this VR shooter experience.
Fan reception is overwhelmingly positive, with players engaging in multiple playthroughs and additional modes. The game received 7/10 rating in Steam Platform and mostly positive reception from more than 300 reviews.
In short, Arizona Sunshine 2 offers an enjoyable and satisfying game experience that will satisfy both fans of the original and VR zombie shooter fan.
Make sure to check this article if you are looking for other horror VR games.
Arizona Sunshine 2 is an impressive VR dog simulator that offers an immersive gaming experience with improved gunplay and a crafting system.
The addition of Buddy the dog adds an emotional impact, and the horde mode and co-op campaign are a great addition.
All in all, Arizona Sunshine 2 is a great sequel that lives up to the original game and is sure to provide hours of entertainment.