Mario and Zelda in VR on Nintendo Switch: a big disappointment


  • Mario and Zelda VR: Nintendo Switch too limited for virtual reality?

Following a free update, the Zelda Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey games for Nintendo Switch are now compatible with the VR Labo Kit virtual reality headset. Unfortunately, while these VR modes were eagerly awaited by fans, we have to admit that the proposed experience is ultimately disappointing.

Let's start with the VR fashions of Mario Odyssey, which consists of three new levels specially created for virtual reality. In this experiment, Mario must collect musical instruments to allow characters to give a concert.

Within these levels, the perspective is fixed at the center of the Realm as if the player were a surveillance camera. In fact, Mario moves around this camera and is generally far from it. This strongly affects the gameplay and the readability of the game.

In addition, the “quest” to bring together the instruments won't take you a few minutes. The game is neither spectacular nor particularly fun and it is unfortunate that such a mythical character as Mario misses his entry into virtual reality.

Mario and Zelda VR: Nintendo Switch too limited for virtual reality?

For its part, Breath of the Wild is fully adapted in VR. Just activate the option from the menu to switch to virtual reality. However, there is no real point in activating this mode.

By default, it is not even possible to turn your head to observe your surroundings. It is possible to activate this option, but the camera will remain in orbit around Link. It therefore performs the same movements as in the base game, and these movements are hardly adapted to virtual reality. The feeling of immersion is greatly reduced, and it should be noted that the experience can easily cause nausea.

In general, we realize that the Nintendo Switch is too limited for virtual reality. The 720p screen definition is too low, and that's why the graphics are grainy. Note that the screenshots presented in this article are more detailed than what you will actually see through the VR Labo Kit headset.

For everyone's safety, this helmet is not able to follow the position of the player as do devices like the Oculus Rift or even the PSVR. Here again, the feeling of immersion is greatly limited.

As Nintendo fans, we would have liked to tell you that Zelda and Mario in VR are a real triumph and should not be missed. Unfortunately, this is clearly not the case. Just hope Big N learns from this half hearted failure and use it to bring us better virtual reality games in the future ...

However, it should be noted that the concern comes more from the VR modes of Mario and Zelda than from the Lab VR Kit. During our test of the Nintendo Switch cardboard VR headset, we were pleasantly surprised by the different experiences offered. However, Mario Odyssey and Zelda Breath of the Wild games are simply not suitable for virtual reality.

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