Star Wars Pinball in VR

2 min read
05 May

I've considered simulating a Star Wars life in virtual reality — and I've tried it a few times in location-based arcades, with AR headsets, and on the Oculus Quest. Even Disney's real-life Galaxy's Edge experience has a virtual reality counterpart. It sounded like a Star Wars pinball game would be fun when I heard it was coming to VR. I wasn't expecting it to be so good.

The non-VR version of Zen Studios' Star Wars Pinball VR is available everywhere, but the version I tried on the Oculus Quest 2 is immersive (it's also available in VR on PlayStation VR and Steam). There are a lot of extras, unlockable, and mini games on each of the eight included tables. They also housed these tables in a Star Wars Fan Cave, complete with posters and memorabilia that can be displayed after completing various score achievements.

But let's get back to the pinball machine. On the Quest 2, the tables look fantastic, and the ball motion is smooth and fast. It's a convincing sensation to move your flippers and stand at the table.

Other pinball games from Zen Studios are available in VR, but Star Wars Pinball has a better presentation and more tables. This is an actually affordable option if you've ever wanted a set of virtual pinball tables in your home.

Another enjoyable feature is the ships and characters that appear alongside the table as you play. The Mandalorian and Grogu sit on either side of an exclusive Mandalorian table, watching and occasionally moving.

Zen Studios is a company that specializes in creating However, the collection of tables appears to be lacking. Tables for Episodes IV-VI, Rebels, Mandalorian, and Rogue One, as well as a "collectibles" table with action figures embedded in the table design and a "Masters of the Force" character-themed table, are all available. However, there are no tables for the Prequels, New Trilogy, or Clone Wars, which is a shame because the Switch version has 19 tables compared to the eight here.

Playing the tables one at a time or in a campaign with timed and high-score challenges unlocks posters, models, helmets, and full-size character recreations that can be displayed in the virtual fan cave, which looks like it's in a basement.

Zen Studios is a company that specializes in creating It all reminds me of how much fun I had playing arcade games in virtual reality on the Oculus Gear VR with Oculus Arcade, an app that never transitioned to Quest.

I used to enjoy the sensation of standing in an arcade cabinet and playing Joust; the sensation was always realistic enough to keep me from buying an arcade cabinet for my home on impulse.

 Star Wars Pinball reminds me that the best virtual reality simulations (such as pinball or ping pong) are often the tiniest.

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Virtual Reality, Augmented and Artificial Intelligence 2021 specialist Amit Caesar wrote the article.
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