Contractors VR is out now for the Oculus Quest, and if you know me at all, you know how excited I am for this. First-person military VR shooters are my favorite genre and the PC version of Contractors has long been one of my favorites. The most glaring weakness with the original Contractors VR was the wire strapped to my head keeping me in place. So the question is does this Quest port bring the big guns, or does it fumble the reload like I usually do in a tense firefight? Let’s dive in and figure it out together, shall we?
Developer Caveman Studio doesn’t try to reinvent the wheel or be something it’s not with Contractors VR. And what it is, is a team-based multiplayer military shooter in VR. There is no campaign and no story to be found. However, if you don’t play well with others, there are two offline single-player modes, including Missions and Free-roam. Free-roam is an endless game of TDM, or team deathmatch, with bots. You can choose the map, the number of bot teammates, and an Easy, Normal, or Hard difficulty level. The Missions mode is more structured as it has you performing certain tasks like escorting a bomb defusal expert or eliminating certain high-value targets amongst a throng of regular bad guys.
Those modes are fun and a perfect way to get the hang of the different weapons, but the real fun is the online modes. And there are a ton of them, including team deathmatch, Kill Confirmed, Gun Game, Capture the Flag, Decryption, escort, elimination, and more. The big addition to the Quest port is a co-op mode, however. I love jumping into a regular match and killing rando’s as much as the next guy, but sometimes I just want to hang out with a buddy or three and kill some bots. In this mode, you can set the bot difficulty and choose different game modes on six of the available maps. Chris and I play a ton of the co-op mode on Onward, so I was very excited to see it added here. Despite it being similar in theory to Onward, they feel completely different. Contractors VR is fast-paced and often feels very bullet spongey. Contractors VR is not a simulator. I repeat, not a simulator. It’s as close to Call of Duty in VR as there is and it does it great.
Co-op is cool, but the meat and potatoes of Contractors is in the five vs five action. Whether you choose competitive or casual, all eleven maps and all game modes are available. For me, just like in traditional flat game shooters, I prefer the classics like Capture the Flag, Team Deathmatch, and Kill Confirmed so that is what I’ve played mostly here. After you die, you can choose one of your 3 custom loadouts and you’ll respawn back into the fire in seconds. The action is always fast and furious.
There are over 30 weapons to choose from and all of them look fantastic. I played a good deal of the early Side Quest version of Contractors and this a massive upgrade, from your full arms and body to the shine and detail on the weapons. This is easily the best-looking shooter on the Quest, and the weapons feel great. You don’t have all of the weapon attachments options that you get in many other titles but the staples are all here: including different sights, grips, and muzzle attachments such as silencers. You’ll be doing the full reloads manually, of course, with each of them following as close to the gun’s real-life counterpart as is possible in VR. And each weapon is different, so you will want to get accustomed to them in the brand new and massive hub area before you venture out into battle. This hub is indeed huge. Here you can set up your loadouts and blast away at everything. There is an official firing range, a large kill house that allows you to race through eliminating targets with a timer, and more. Seriously, I haven’t even walked the entire area to find all of its secrets yet.
Just as in the PC version, there is a gunstock calibration tool to cater to us players who use a physical gunstock. This allows you to manually position each and every rifle just right on whichever gunstock you own, whether it’s a Protube, a DIY model, or the Virtual Rifle Systems MK3 like me. This calibration tool works great and should be a staple of the genre moving forward.
You will need to have your VR legs cause, the game is fast, there is a jump button and there is no teleportation in sight. Click-turning is an option, and you’ll find some optional blinders but Contractors VR doesn’t hold anybody’s hand. Thankfully, It’s optimized beautifully and I didn’t feel any unease spinning around, climbing steps, or jumping off of storage containers.
I played for hours today on the game’s launch and the lobbies were packed, but what about a month from now? Or six months? That is the elephant in the room when it comes to VR multiplayer games. The good news is that this is both a cross-buy with the Rift and more importantly cross-play with the PC version. Hopefully, this will keep the lobbies full like it was today because today was a blast. The co-op modes and single-player missions will always be there, of course, but it’s always more fun to play with real people.
There is a lot to love for fans of the genre here, but there are a few things that could use some improvement. First of all, there is a ton of friendly fire, because the banner over your teammate’s head doesn’t show up for a few precious seconds. My teammates and I spent several minutes every round apologizing for shooting each other. I didn’t see an option to turn on friendly fire so at least we didn’t kill anyone. And this is just a personal preference of mine, but the time-to-kill ratio of both bots and real players seems both too high and too inconsistent. Of course, some variance is a must with the different body armor at our disposal, but even so, it seems to lack consistency. Lastly, I wish there was a progression system to entice players to keep coming back for more. Instead of unlocking weapons and attachments as you level up, everything is available from the start but with a point system built-in. In other words, if you want that silencer or heavy armor, you’re gonna need to leave that grenade at home and take a smoke bomb instead. But I’m a sucker for unlocking things. I’m always convinced that the next attachment is what will finally make me an unstoppable force.
As I mentioned, if you purchased the game for the Oculus Rift, then you already own Contractors VR for the Quest. Otherwise, it’ll set you back $19.99, which is a steal in my book. It is the best-looking and most polished shooter in the Quest library and if it can maintain a decent player base, then it is an absolute must-own for the Quest.
Contractors VR Oculus Quest Review
Overall - Must Play - 9/10
The Contractors port from PC to the Quest is a smashing success and is another reminder of how much the Quest 2 can accomplish in terms of looks and performance. It doesn’t look as good as the PC version obviously, but it still looks fantastic and is a blast to play. The weapons look and feel great, and the new co-op mode is a nice addition to an already stacked menu. If it can maintain a steady player-base, and I don’t see why it wouldn’t, then this could easily be the destination for many Quest shooter fans for a long time to come.
- It’s a shooter and the guns look and feel great to shoot
- Lot’s of modes to choose from including all of the classics and more
- Improved visuals for Quest 2 owners makes it the best looking shooter for the headset
- The Time-to-kill ration is too long and seems inconsistent
- Friendly tag doesn’t immediately show over teammates head causing a lot of friendly fire
- A progression system would have been a great addition
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Reviewed using Oculus Quest 2.