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Bringing Zone of the Enders to the Next Generation

Nina talks to Céline Combelles of Konami about what fans can expect from the VR remaster.

With the release date for Zone Of The Enders: The 2nd Runner – M∀RS due next month, Konami are getting the hype train rolling out of the station. This will be the third time that Zone of the Enders has seen a re-release, but for the first time, fans will be able to enjoy it in virtual reality (VR).

Zone Of The Enders: The 2nd Runner – M∀RS has been available for Gamescom 2018 attendees to play, with both the standard and virtual reality (VR) versions available to try out. Nina Salomons of VRFocus was lucky enough to speak with Céline Combelles, European Brand Manager at Konami Digital Entertainment about the project and what players can expect when it is released.

The title is a remastered version of the original title which was released for the PlayStation 2 back in 2002, and subsequently re-released in HD for the PlayStation 3 in 2012. This iteration will have 4K video support for users of the PlayStation 4 Pro as well as VR support.

Asked about the market demand for this VR remaster, Combelles replied: “There is definitely a strong fan following for Zone of the Enders, some people are really passionate about this game, because it is quite special in its own way.”

Moving on the speaking about the gameplay players could expect, Combelles said: “There aren’t that many games that let you pilot a giant mech and most of the ones that do exist are a little slower-paced, a little more strategic. Zone of the Enders is a fast-paced action game, a pretty unique take on the genre.”

Asked about what differences players might notice between the PlayStation 2 version and the VR version, Combelles said: “The story itself and the characters and dialogue are all intact. We’re simply bringing it to the next generation. However, this is the first time that Zone of the Enders will be on PC, so that version has been built from scratch, painstakingly rebuilding everything in the PlayStation VR version and bringing it to PC.”

Speaking about the new re-master’s visuals, Combelles said: “When you buy any version of the game, whether that is PS4 or Pc you actually can play the game very differently. If you have a PS4 Pro for instance, you will be able to see you details and new special effects, new reflections and shadows. Once you plus in a VR headset, you can jump in and be in the cockpit of the robot in a first-person perspective, compared to the third-person you would have without VR. This gives you a new view on every single scene.”

Zone of the Enders uses an Xbox or Dual Shock controller instead of motion controllers, Combelles commented: “That boiled down to a choice to reflect game design. Zone of the Enders has a lot of weapons to control and a lot of fast-paced movements. In order to allow you to deploy weapons in the game and fly around as a giant robot. So we thought that to feel the power of your weapons, we felt that the gamepad was the right option.”

Zone of the Enders is due to launch on 6th September, 2018 for PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. Further news on this and other upcoming VR titles will be here on VRFocus.

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