In the latest episode of the Impact Reality Podcast, our hosts Skeeva, Eric & Jasmine sat down with the visionary behind Alvo, Steve, and took listeners on a fascinating deep dive into the game’s inception, its journey, the community and some sneak peeks about what the future holds for the game.
The Genesis of Alvo
Steve’s journey began with classic consoles like the Sega Genesis and PlayStation 1. “I’ve always been a gamer at heart,” Steve reminisced. His foray into VR started with Google Cardboard, leading him to the more immersive PlayStation VR.
Steve’s passion for VR gaming led him to Alvo, a promising PlayStation VR game that faced cancellation due to funding issues. Determined to see the game’s potential realized, Steve reached out to Martin Poole, Alvo’s developer, with a proposition. “I saw the potential in Alvo and wanted to be a part of its journey,” Steve shared. This commitment was solidified with a $7,000 gentleman’s agreement, showcasing Steve’s dedication to the game.
“Initially, when I got into this, I felt like as a gamer that I was like, yeah, well, my intuition’s pretty good with this,” Steve began, reflecting on the early days of Alvo’s development. What started as a vision for a CS:GO clone quickly evolved. “It was designed to be, you know, basically like a CS go clone, you know, more or less like Pavlov with an aim controller,” Steve shared. However, as the team delved deeper into VR’s potential, they realized the opportunity for a richer, more dynamic gaming experience.
Challenges and Triumphs
The road to Alvo’s success wasn’t without its challenges. Steve recounted his experiences with the Rift, gathering feedback, and the emotional rollercoaster of the game’s development. “Waiting for the game’s release was nerve-wracking,” Steve admitted. However, the overwhelming positive reception of Alvo on PlayStation VR was a testament to their hard work, allowing Steve to recover his investment.
The Evolution of Gameplay Mechanics
The Alvo team’s commitment to innovation and player experience is evident in the game’s evolving mechanics. “We added jumping… we put it out there to the few beta testers… Let’s try a slide… Let’s try a prone,” Steve recounted. The guiding principle behind these additions was simple and profound: “Is it fun?” This philosophy has been the cornerstone of Alvo’s development, ensuring that every feature and mechanic enhances the player’s immersion and enjoyment.
The Power of Community
Throughout the interview, Steve’s appreciation for the Alvo community was palpable. “We really do have some passionate players, passionate community members,” he said, emphasizing that the game’s success was as much a result of the community’s dedication as the developers’ hard work. This symbiotic relationship between developers and players has been instrumental in shaping Alvo’s direction and ensuring its continued success in a competitive market.
Our players are passionate, and their feedback is invaluable,” he said. This symbiotic relationship between developers and players ensures that Alvo remains player-centric, adapting and evolving based on community needs and desiresSteve
The Power of Modding
One of the episode’s highlights was the discussion on the game modding community. Steve expressed regret at not setting up Alvo for mods earlier, understanding the community’s potential in shaping a game’s success. “The modding community can be transformative for games,” Steve emphasized, referencing the impact on games like ‘Contractors’.
The Road Ahead for Alvo
For fans eagerly awaiting updates, Steve had a treasure trove of teasers. “The best version of Alvo is yet to come,” he promised. With an impending release on PlayStation VR 2 and a forthcoming debut on Steam, the future looks bright for Alvo. “There’s going to be a number of graphical upgrades right off the bat,” Steve revealed. But it’s not just about graphics. The game is set to introduce a slew of new features, including the ability to mod, and yes, the much-anticipated jetpacks and flamethrowers. “I still think jet packs and flamethrowers are going to be great,” Steve quipped, showcasing his unwavering commitment to innovation and fun.
The Bigger Picture: VR’s Evolution
The conversation also touched upon the broader VR landscape. Both the hosts and Steve acknowledged the tireless efforts of VR developers and content creators in pushing the boundaries of immersive gaming. “Capturing VR and developing for VR, I understand, is incredibly hard,” Steve remarked, highlighting the challenges and triumphs of working in this dynamic field.
The Impact Reality Podcast’s session with Steve was more than just an interview; it was a journey into the heart of VR game development. Through Steve’s insights and anecdotes, listeners got a glimpse of the passion, dedication, and innovation that goes into creating a game like Alvo. As Steve aptly put it, “If you believe it, you can achieve it.” With pioneers like Steve at the helm, the future of VR gaming looks brighter than ever.
Watch The Full Interview
Watch the entire interview here on the Impact Reality XR Podcast