Published on May 16th, 2021 | by Chris O'Connor
Traffic Jams VR Review (Oculus Quest 2)
Summary: Traffic management in the palm of your hand/s! But it may not be as easy as it seems.
Drive to the Hand
Sometimes we want to be fully immersed in a VR game, dive into a deep, rich story line and feel at one with the characters. Other times we just want to pick up our headset and play. Traffic Jams is the latter but that’s not a bad thing… especially if you start to feel the road rage.
The core premise of the game (perhaps unsurprisingly) is that you have been placed in charge of traffic management. You begin under the tutelage of Dennis (who reminded me of The Muppets Swedish Chef), but with not a lot to learn (ie point at who you want to instruct, then either wave them on or hold your hand up to indicate stop)… you soon find yourself directing traffic. Naturally things start out small, just a T intersection with reasonably paced cars and foot traffic. But don’t get comfortable, things get much more complex. You’ll find yourself dealing with busier intersections with more traffic (and more directions they can come from) and then you will also be faced with unusual distractions such as zombies and meteorites.
There are five cities you will need to show your skills in, with day/night sections and the stress inducing rush hour! What you might think could be a nice simple zone out game… quickly becomes a stressful head spinning workout. If you can’t see where the next car/person/thing is that you need to direct… pay attention to the sounds as you may be able to hear where your next objective is coming from (or hear the abuse hurled your way because you have neglected them for so long.).
This is actually a great game for those without much space because there isn’t any need to move off the one spot… I mean sure you can easily end up tangled in any cord you may have (depending on which device and how you play it)… but there’s no real concern about motion sickness, unless whipping your head around quickly, often is likely to cause you to feel queasy in which case you may need to prepare for that.
There’s not a lot of game here… I won’t even go into detail about the multiplayer… because it’s not really all that interactive… but it’s there if you want it. But I think it does well as a quick play title. Something you might pick up from time to time just to have a bit of fun. Each level has objectives (some far less obvious than others) so you can certainly spend time trying to unlock them… but you can also pass time playing more mischievously. You’re supposed to make traffic flow nice and smoothly… but if you don’t like the look of the truck driver heading towards you or that pedestrian looks a little suspicious… whose to say you might not direct them in a way that causes some strife?
I think with these games, ones that are really more pick up and play for a while then move on, it’s important that they find a good price point. Fortunately for Traffic Jams I think they are at about the right price… not too pricey, but not dirt cheap. If you want a bit of fun, in a world that looks like a cartoon, this may well be a great fit for you.