Moss is a third person platform puzzle game for PSVR where you control a mouse called Quill. In Moss you play as a reader, a magical being who is able to help the mouse warrior Quill on her quest to rescue her uncle and defeat the darkness that is taking over her world. This game is free until 22 April with the Play at Home 2021 program and is one of the best PlayStation VR games out there.
You control her actions with the analog stick and face buttons while you as the reader have a glowing spherical orb that you move by physically moving your DualShock controller. Unlike most games, Quill is aware of the player. The player controls Quill, navigating environments and battling enemies. The player can also manipulate the environment to navigate obstacles and solve puzzles. The reader can move large blocks, raise tiles, heal Quill and even pet her which she just loves.
At its most basic Moss is an action-adventure puzzle platformer in the spirit of the best of the Zelda games. You and Quill team up to fight enemies and solve puzzles as you work your way through mouse towns, oppressive marshes and crumbling ruins. The combat is simple but fluid and the puzzles range in difficulty from blindingly obvious to deviously complex. It takes a mix of timing, lateral thinking and strategy to get through the best of the puzzles.
If you get stumped Quill will often stop and point the way or she will communicate with the player through the use of Sign Language for puzzle hints and emotional responses. Quill’s animation alone is worth focusing on. All of her moments are fluid, quick and mouse like. From the way she gracefully vaults up short obstacles to the way she shakes herself off after she falls in the water, Quill immediately has a character and personality that stands out and makes you take notice.
You feel terrible every time you accidentally kill her. The combat in this game is extremely simplistic and you only have 3 commands. You have attack, dodge and jump, yet the combat was quite dynamic and an aspect of that had to do with the fact that you were doing a lot of the combat while working with different puzzle aspects. But even without that the combat was challenging throughout the entirety of the game and kept you intrigued as you played.
While the game play is well thought out and entertaining the star is the visual experience. The graphics and detail they put into each aspect of this game really helps immerse you in the game and it really just makes it feel more fluid. Moss is one of the most detailed, most beautiful and breathtaking games I have played on PSVR. Moss does an amazing job grounding you in Quill’s world by giving you a sense of how tiny and delicate her world is.
At the same time, it’s grounded and expansive. In VR you see the world at Quill’s scale but you are constantly reminded of just how small she is by seeing deer or even old rusted human size armor as part of the background. Scale is everything, making mouse sized corridors feel cavernous but in the next moment making you feel exactly how small and fragile Quill is as she faces off against a life sized boss. While we cry out for more open world games Moss’s designers have showed us a totally new way to create a sense of depth and reality.
This depth and beauty come at a cost however. Moss is very short and most players should be able to finish the main story in less than 3 hours which is quite disappointing. The free DLC called Twilight Garden does add about 30 – 40 min of extra gameplay but you can complete the whole game in a day if you want to. Overall Moss is a masterpiece of gaming and has become my new go to when introducing someone to PSVR. If you have PSVR you should definitely try out this game as it is free until 22 April.
Available to download and play for free until 22 April 2021
Quill is an adorable little mouse and her actions are very well animated. Puzzles make good use of both traditional platforming and of the PSVR controls. Only downside in this great and fun game is the length which is about 3 hours.