When was the last time a game (or a movie for that matter) made you laugh? We don’t see a lot of comedy games these days, probably because humor is so subjective. That’s why Trover Saves the Universe is such a breath of fresh air. Justin Roiland's irreverent, odd, seemingly random humor that we all know and love from Rick and Morty is the perfect fit for a game.
Trover Saves the Universe offers platforming, light puzzles, support for PlayStation VR, and easily some of the best comedy I’ve ever seen. The developers have also promised free DLC to come! Does it all come together into a must-play experience? Let’s find out.
Solid Gameplay, Elevated by Phenomenal Humor and Dialogue
The premise behind Trover Saves the Universe probably won’t come as a surprise to fans of Justin Roiland, but it’s still insane by anyone’s standards. One of the Abstainers, Glorkon, has kidnapped your dogs and shoved them into his eye holes.
In doing so, he has achieved an ultimate power that he intends to use to destroy the universe. You play as a nameless Chairorpean, which is a race of people who spend their entire lives sitting in floating chairs.
Trover, a purple creature who has power babies stuffed into his eye holes, arrives shortly after your dogs are kidnapped to retrieve you for his boss. From here, the game takes you on a surreal, hilarious, and positively insane adventure through the cosmos.
To say anything more would be spoiling the best part of Trover Saves the Universe, which is the story and humor. If you are even a passing fan of Roiland’s work, this game is going to have you in tears from laughing so hard.
The best part is that there is a huge amount of optional dialogue, no doubt from long improv sessions in the recording booth. This means that characters and enemies will continue talking and spouting out jokes long after they’ve delivered their main lines. Finding and listening to all of this optional dialogue is a game in and of itself that I absolutely loved.
There’s also replay value as a result of numerous decisions you make in the game. Very often you will be asked direct questions where you can respond “yes” or “no” and this results in different dialogue. There are also vague instructions from characters at time that allow you to make mistakes or mess around. The game responds to this in due fashion, with some truly amazing reactions.
I would offer an example, but again, this is a game that’s best played without any knowledge going into it. If you take your time and enjoy all of the hidden humor, Trover Saves the Universe will last you about six hours or so, but as I mentioned in the beginning of the review, the developer has promised free DLC in the future. In return, the game will remain at its $30 price point. This is more than fair, and a great reason to pick up the game sooner than later.
The humor is top-notch, but how is the gameplay? Trover Saves the Universe is your classic hack-and-slash mixed with some light puzzle and platforming elements. Since you are a stationary character in a floating chair. Your in-game controller has you directing Trover himself via a power baby stuffed into the digital DualShock.
You can play Trover Saves the Universe on your TV or in PlayStation VR. The entire experience is catered to VR, so that is absolutely the best way to play. Your chair warps to various nodes in the world, thus moving the camera, and an early ability also lets you change your height to get different angles while controlling Trover.
All of this is superb in VR, with crisp visuals and excellent depth. This allows you to navigate the environment effortlessly and spot hidden power baby collectibles. The experience doesn’t translate quite as well to TV, though. It’s perfectly playable, but you really lose a lot of the perspective and immersion on a flat screen.
I always appreciate when developers offer the option for standard or VR play, but Trover is absolutely best experienced with a PlayStation VR headset, hands-down. Regardless of how you choose to play, Trover offers interesting environments to explore, fun hack-and-slash combat, and a few puzzles here and there. The puzzles are actually a highlight too, because the game loves to break the fourth wall. Trover will complain about puzzles, or downright refuse to deal with them on occasion. The final season of Game of Thrones may not have subverted your expectations the right way, but Trover Saves the Universe certainly does with flair and hilarity each time.
Combat starts pretty simple with Trover’s laser sword, but abilities come frequently, and new enemy types offer some variety to keep things from getting stale. It doesn’t reinvent the wheel, but it does flow well and offer an extra layer to the gameplay that I enjoyed. Some of the combat scenarios also make great use of VR and head tracking to engage the player in multiple ways (as opposed to just mindlessly hacking and slashing).
If it weren’t for the side-splitting dialogue and story, Trover Saves the Universe would be an okay game, but with VR and Justin Roiland’s insanity behind it, the experience is easily a must-play for VR owners.
A Must Play For PSVR Owners
Trover Saves the Universe is a gorgeous game in virtual reality. The Game’s worlds all offer unique themes, bright colors, and phenomenal perspective. There’s a remarkable amount of detail in the environment as well, including amazing animation on the characters and their lip sync.
PlayStation VR has been enjoying a lot of quality releases lately, so your wallet may be begging for a break. For $30, Trover Saves the Universe is an absolutely steal. The promise of free DLC sweetens the package, but this game is easily the funniest experience I’ve had on the PS4. Combine that will superb VR support, and solid gameplay, and Trover Saves the Universe becomes a title you simply have to buy.
Pay your bills, get some groceries, but stick to the bare minimum. I don’t care if you have to sell other games, pick up a side job, or check your couches for loose change. If you own a PSVR headset, you need to buy this game ASAP. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go back in and find those power babies I missed in my first playthrough.
Final Score: 9.0/10
A copy of Trover Saves the Universe was provided to PS4 Experts for review purposes
Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert date - 6/4/19