VR is an experience unlike any other. The most mundane of movements and actions take on a newly profound meaning thanks to the wholly interactive nature of the platform. This has made a range of experiences and games possible that previously weren’t and has brought a relevance that wasn’t there to others. That same interactivity is what brought me to VR and since picking up my PSVR I’ve been slowly working my way through a variety of different games. The latest of these is Accounting+, an exploration game with light puzzle elements and a dash of Rick and Morty developed by Crows Crows Crows. While mechanically simple and relatively short, the game’s writing and style make it a great experience.
Accounting+ takes place in a world where VR has become the most efficient way to perform accounting. You begin the game as your start your first ever day as an accountant, listening to your superiors as they talk you through how to boot up your VR software/headset and get to work – with a few jeers and jokes along the way. In an utterly shocking turn of events, it turns out that the software you loaded wasn’t in fact the accounting software it was made out to be, but some ‘other’ software. Right from the first moments of the game, Accounting+ builds itself to be a mostly funny, but sometimes shocking and off-putting game. The characters are written in such a way to make you always feel like you’re not where you belong and even the simplest interaction has been built to illicit a reaction from you. This is helped by some well-delivered voice acting that perfectly matches the absurdity of the situations you find yourself in.
As you find yourself in a mysterious forest, Accounting+ truly begins as you move from area to area, interacting with the environment to find the way out of your current situation. Physical interactions themselves are incredibly simple – everything is motion based, such as picking up items and throwing/placing them in the right areas – but it’s the way the world is built around these interactions that makes the game great. Everything you do causes some sort of reaction in the world, be it something physically changing or a character reacting to your actions. This makes the world feel alive, even if the areas you’re in are only as big as a single room, keeps you engaged and exploring at every moment. Those same rooms are also stylistically striking, with differing environmental designs and character art-styles. They’re all somewhat simple, but this prevents them from becoming cluttered and confusing, allowing you to focus on what really matters. The best part is that no two environments are the same, keeping them all interesting and new as you progress.
While my impressions of Accounting+ were mostly positive, there were a couple of niggling issues. One was just how simple the interactions and mechanics in the game really were. Simple mechanics by themselves aren’t necessarily a negative on their own, but it’s the wrapping and design around them that determines how they’re received. In the case of Accounting+, the puzzles and interactions around the mechanics are also incredibly simple and relatively shallow. Most ‘puzzles’ are as simple as finding the right item and putting it in the right area, with only a couple of more complex puzzles/interactions. I would have loved for a few more complex puzzles and interactions in the game. These simple interactions also seem to directly correlate to my other issue with Accounting+ – its length. I don’t mind short games, in fact I tend to prefer them to games that overstay their welcome. However, there is a limit to that. Because of how simple the interactions are in Accounting+ I found myself blowing through the game at an alarming pass. A single playthrough of the game clocked in at around 1 hour, while you could add maybe another hour if you’re looking to find every secret in the game as well. Without much in the way of replayability, Accounting+ is simply too short.
Accounting+ is essentially what I consider to be the quintessential VR game – interesting, interactive, simple and shorter than I’d like. What’s there is great, with striking environments, interesting characters and humorous writing, I just wish there was more of it. If you don’t mind that short length, than Accounting+ is an easy game to recommend.
- Striking environments - Great writing - Easy to understand mechanics
- Interactions/puzzles are too smiplistic