I spend a lot of time with a VR headset on my face--probably more than most people who own a VR headset. However, I often find myself going back to the same handful of games in order to scratch an itch; my favorite VR games are easy to jump into, fast-paced and get me moving. That's why I was excited to try Survios' VR boxing game, Creed: Rise to Glory this weekend ahead of the game's launch today.
I’m a big proponent of VR fitness and the idea of getting your cardio in while playing a game. Survios is all about building active VR games, and Creed: Rise to Glory is no exception. If you want a game that will make you break a sweat, this could be just the game you need. I know I needed a shower after a few rounds in the ring.
Creed: Rise to Glory is a first-person VR boxing game based on the Rocky spin-off, Creed. You take the roll of Adonis Creed, the illegitimate son of Apollo Creed from the Rocky films, and must fight your way up through the ranks of the boxing circuit to rise to the top and take the championship title.
Like in the films, your boxing career starts in the gym. Before you can fight in the ring, you must prove that you have what it takes. The first time you enter the gym, you’ll learn the basic fighting mechanics, such as blocking and dodging. Next, your trainer will run you through a series of exercises in rapid succession. The Rocky training montage song plays in the background, which motivated me to push harder.
The training montage includes stops at the heavy punching bag, the double end bag, the boxing mannequin and the treadmill. You must complete a challenge at each station within a few seconds before jumping to the next station. The number of exercises that you complete in the allotted time determines how much stamina you’ll have when you enter the ring. Once you complete a training montage, you can take your skills to the ring and fight your first real opponent.
The Fight Begins When You Touch Gloves
Your first opponent is an easy fight, but the intensity of the match is incredible. You really do need to duck, dodge and block the incoming punches or you’ll end up on the floor in short order. To block your opponent’s punches, hold your gloves in front of your face. Don’t throw a punch until you see an opening because as soon as you drop your guard, you can expect to get walloped in the nose.
When you start swinging fists, don’t forget the lessons you learned at the gym. Make your punches count; use the combos you learned on the training dummy. And don’t forget, you won’t have much stamina in your first fight, so take your time and don’t start flailing your arms like a madman.
Get Back on Your Feet!
Even the best fighters in the world get knocked down from time to time. It’s not a big deal if you get back up. When you take one too many blows to the face, you’ll hit the ground, and your spirit will leave your body. You must run back to your body within 10 seconds, which is where the treadmill training comes in handy.
Sometimes you’ll take a blow that doesn’t knock you to the ground but dazes you and leaves you vulnerable. When this happens, you must move your hands to the blinking markers on the screen as fast as you can.
If you put your training to work, you’ll soon find yourself standing over your knocked-out foe with a win on your record.
Back to the Gym
Survios doesn’t give you any downtime in your rise to glory. As soon as the first match concludes, you’ll be back in the gym for more training. You can wander the facility freely and try all the equipment at your own pace. When you think you’re ready for another fight, you can talk to your trainer, who will lead you through another exercise montage to determine your stamina for the next match.
At the start of the game, you learn from a local gym trainer, but when you get further into the game, the legendary Rocky Balboa himself takes you under his wing to teach you everything he knows about boxing.
Breaking a Sweat
I mentioned above that I am a fan of getting my cardio via VR, and I think I found my new go-to game for when I want to break a sweat and get my blood flowing. It used to be that I would play a few rounds of Space Pirate Trainer in Hardcore mode to get my heart racing, but Creed got my heart pumping in a much shorter time frame. It took me about 30 to 40 minutes to blast through the first three training sessions and the first three boxing matches, and by the end of the third fight, I was in desperate need of a shower. I would have continued playing, but I didn’t want to risk damaging my HTC Vive headset from the moisture.
I Will Fight You!
Creed: Rise to Glory also includes a multiplayer function, which means you can now box your friends and not worry about going home with bruises on your face. I haven’t yet played this mode of the game yet, but I look forward to giving a few of my friends a good pummeling.
Creed: Rise to Gloryis available today for $29.99 on Steam, Oculus Home (opens in new tab) and PlayStation VR.