Doctor Who has a fond spot in my heart. I was raised on it and have watched it for almost my entire life, but I’ve never been particularly grabbed by any video game adaptations of Doctor Who. In the last couple of years, Maze Theory released Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality to relative acclaim, and now they’ve released Doctor Who: The Edge Of Reality as an expansion to the gameplay formula introduced in the original, but without the VR element.
Name: Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality
Platform(s): PlayStation VR, Oculus Rift, Oculus Quest, HTC VIVE, VIVE Cosmos
Developer: Maze Theory
Game Type: Virtual reality
Mode(s): Single Player
Release Date: Out NOw
The basic gameplay of Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality is similar to that of a walking simulator, with you going around planets and trying to find different time crystals. The issue with this is that it doesn’t really offer anything enticing to the player for the majority of the game, you’ll find yourself bored quite quickly. Even now and again the game will have cutaway moments of gameplay where you’ll find yourself in an entirely different genre of game, such as playing as a Dalek in a first-person shooter. These moments are really fun, but they’re altogether too short. The story is barebones but serviceable, with expansions upon the story of the original game. It’s nice to have the Tenth Doctor here now, and monsters such as the Weeping Angels are still terrifying. Although, I do have a minor gripe regarding the monsters. So the way you die in this game is you just fade to black and reset, and every single time I was killed by a Dalek it was done so without even the atypical sound effect. What’s the point if you’re not going to do it right?
I played Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality on PC using a controller (Blasphemy, I’m aware) and it was extremely badly optimized for such a choice. There’s no control scheme in the menu, there’s no indication of what any button does so you have to guess what you think the controls actually are. Speaking of options, there’s literally the bare minimum. No real graphics options, ugly and unintuitive menus, just the extremely bare minimum that could be done.
The performances in Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality are about what you’d expect. David Tennant and Jodie Whittaker are clearly fumbling through a mediocre script and giving all they can, but even a good actor can only do so much with this kind of material. A lot of the lines feel wholly unnatural, especially in the case of the Daleks and the Weeping Angels. I wasn’t expecting a huge amount from this game in terms of story and performances, but I wanted something better than whatever this is.
Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality is mediocre through and through. It has shining moments of potential that are quickly shrouded by how ugly the game is, how unpleasant to control everything is and how bad the story can get. The game is glitchy and bugged, so if you do want to play it be aware that you could be waiting a while for a long list of fixes. It stings to write this conclusion because I’ve wanted this game to be good since it was announced, but perhaps there’s a very good reason why Doctor Who rarely gets the video game treatment.
Review Disclosure Statement: Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality was provided to us by Maze Theory for review purposes. For more information on how we conduct and handle reviews here, please visit our Review Guideline/Scoring Policy for more info. Thank you
Affiliate Link Disclosure: One or more of the links above contain affiliate links, which means at no additional cost to you, we may receive a commission should you click through and purchase the item.
Doctor Who: The Edge of Reality should have been one of those games where you really feel like The Doctor, but a half-hearted VR walking simulator working with only references to please long-time fans, feels like a huge missed opportunity and a reminder of why Doctor Who doesn’t get that many game releases, no matter which incarnation of The Doctor you like.