Asgard’s Wrath 2 is pushing the boundaries of what’s possible in VR | Hands-on preview

by on December 7, 2023

I’ve been wanting a fully fledged RPG in VR for years, but I’ve never found one that’s risen to the heights it should. Sure, we got Skyrim VR, but that was already it’s own thing, and even then it didn’t quite work in virtual reality. Although I’m only a handful of hours into Asgard’s Wrath 2 so far, it’s already pushing the boundaries of what a great RPG should be in VR, and I’m having so much fun already. It’s still early days, but I’m already immersed in the story, the world, and the gameplay.

The story is fairly straightforward in Asgard’s Wrath 2, but when anything features mythology from ancient Greece or the times of the Vikings, I’m already interested. You’re tasked with chasing Loki across the realms before he causes chaos and messes up the universe. You’re a cosmic guardian who embodies various characters across different chapters, and the first one saw me take over the body of Abraxas. After an incredibly well put-together cutscene that showed the events of the first game, I was running across walls a la Titanfall 2, swing my sword like a boss, and throwing my axe as if I was Kratos himself, recalling it at my will.

Combat is smooth, and enemies are varied enough to pose a challenge. You can parry attacks by enemies wielding weapons, chop off their limbs, or block projectiles if you’re lucky. They also have weak spots that can take them out quicker, which helps when you’re surrounded by more than one. Each fight feels important, and the thrill of taking out packs of monsters is one of the best things I’ve done so far. Movement is also incredible. You can speed forward or backwards, or to the side to dodge, run freely around, climb up areas, and more.

There’s so much freedom in both movement and combat that you have to stop to remind yourself that you’re playing in VR. Although I feel like I’ve only scratched the surface, I’m already impressed by how responsive the controls are, and how enjoyable the fundamentals of the gameplay are. I can’t wait to unlock new weapons, and I’d also say new moves, but I’m responsible for that, and it’s a liberating thought. Getting to explore such a rich world also helps with the immersion of Asgard’s Wrath 2, especially when you’re out in the wide open, not restricted by the enclosed spaces.

However, in the first area I played, the inside of some giant temple had so much variety inside, from swinging pendulums and moving blades to puzzles that needed to be solved. These puzzles had me transforming from my small, human-sized body into a literal god, taking up the huge space within one of the chambers and trying to balance two scales with different sized urns. A simple press of the button shifts your size, and these moments further highlight the scale of what Asgard’s Wrath 2 is all about.

One of the final puzzles had me pulling two chains with hooks on the end to move platforms up and across, which led to my smaller self pulling levers and standing on said platforms to reach them. Visually, switching between these two perspectives was impressive, but the general design of ancient Egypt is excellent. It looks gorgeous, and seeing more of what is potentially a 100-plus hour game has me weak at the knees. Sanzaru Games knows it’s being ambitious, and on the surface it seems far too much so for its own good, but when you’re in this world and actually doing what you’re doing within it, these developers are backing it up.

I can’t wait to share more about my travels, but I’m so conscious about spoiling anything too early. We’ll have our full review up next week, but so far Asgard’s Wrath 2 is remarkable in what it is managing to achieve. Fluid and responsive movement and combat, a gorgeous and detailed world, some clever puzzles, wonderfully designed cutscenes and characters, and so much more. I might encounter some things I don’t like, but I’m not going to stop playing through it. It’s got so much going for it I can’t stop thinking about the heights it just might reach once the hours start to wrack up.

Asgard’s Wrath 2 is coming to Meta Quest 3 on December 15th.