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A Lot or a Little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Flow Weaver is a first-person fantasy puzzle game available for download on the Oculus Rift and Oculus Quest virtual reality (VR) platforms. This is an escape room styled game, with players trapped in a small room and challenged to use objects and information, found nearby and through the player's ability to shift dimensions, in order to find a way out. The controls are intuitive and fluid, working as an extension of the player's natural movements. The game features no inappropriate content, though there are some images of such as that of a restless spirit and a skeleton that could scare younger kids. Parents should also be aware that most VR platforms are not recommended for children under the age of 13.
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What’s It About?
In FLOW WEAVER, you take on the title role as a magic user trained in pulling the threads that connect the different dimensions, or "Flows" of the universe. While practicing your craft, a rift suddenly opens and pulls you in. As you regain your senses, you realize you've been abducted and are being held captive, bound in a small room and sealed off from most of your magical abilities … most, but not all. Using your wits and ingenuity, you interact with the objects in your cell and discover the vast secrets the room still holds. As you discover these secrets, you being to unlock more of your abilities. Phasing between Flows but still trapped in the room, you must learn how the actions and items you take in one realm can affect objects in the others. Through it all, you'll begin to solve the mystery behind your abduction, and the truth behind the power the Flow Weavers wield.
Is It Any Good?
This VR game takes a classic puzzle experience, tosses in a handy amount of VR magic, and produces an engaging, although short, experience. Flow Weaver builds on one of the most obvious concepts for a puzzler, which is the escape room. Here, players are trapped within the confines of an area and are forced to solve puzzles by using little more than their brains and the objects in the room with them. Now, take away the laws of physics and nature that govern the real world and replace them with fantastic magic abilities to travel through a literal multiverse of options, and you've got the makings of something truly special. You've got the unique fantasy VR experience, Flow Weaver.
Admittedly, Flow Weaver is a "one and done" experience. From the opening moments to the final credits will only take around three hours or so for most gamers. It's also very linear, so there's not much in the way of replay value. On the upside, it's an intriguing and brain bending game from start to finish. Despite being trapped in a single room, shifting into other Flows opens a window to a patchwork of diverse and beautifully rendered realms. The game's story isn't heavy handed but still does a good job of building a satisfying lore that should get players' interests. And best of all, the virtual reality mechanics put players right into the middle of everything, creating a fantasy escape room so immersive, players won't want to leave.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about virtual reality technology. How has VR tech evolved over the years and where does it seem to be going in the future? What are some of the benefits and detriments to using VR technology today? How can VR affect kids' development?
How can events like "escape rooms" help to develop strong problem solving skills? What are some ways that learning to think outside the box or to improvise solutions can help people in their everyday lives?
- Platforms: Oculus Quest, Oculus Rift
- Skills: Thinking & Reasoning: analyzing evidence, applying information, problem solving, solving puzzles
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online?: Available online
- Publisher: Oculus Studios
- Release date: March 11, 2021
- Genre: Adventure
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Adventures, Monsters, Ghosts, and Vampires
- ESRB rating: E10+ for Minor Language
- Last updated: March 11, 2021
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