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Tin Hearts VR has launched in full version after 7 or 8 years in the making - and it's awesome!

RuneSR2
Grand Champion

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I finally had time to test the game - but we can start with some trailers:

 

 

The game is here for about 15 $/€ - 25% off (VR support is added to the 2D version):

https://store.steampowered.com/app/1831700/Tin_Hearts/

 

Not sure why they chose PSVR2 for the launch trailer, Index with high software res and solid 72 - 144 fps totally blows the PSVR2 out of the water in this game. I'm not saying this because I don't like the PSVR2 - I own both an Index and a PSVR2, and I do appreciate both hmds.

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This is the PCVR version - really the best VR version of the game you can get - it looks great

PSVR2 users posted about Tin Hearts:

"It's not quite up there with resolution - graphical effects are definitely PSVR2 with resolution around psvr1 [...] There does seem to be reprojection, which I'm not sure if they can fix but leaves 'double' images as you move"

"I just finished playing for about 1 hour and looks fine on very close ups, but a little blurry on medium or long distances, I didn't try the demo so I can't make a comparison. Anyway, the game looks ok for me , not great but enough to have fun with it, the art design is cozy and I really liked. The game itself is good enough if you liked lemmings and is very addictive. The worst for me are the controls, you have to turn with o and triangle, and the movement is strange, is hard to get used to it. It cost me 20 minutes to feel comfortable with the controls ,.once you get that you begin to enjoy it. Hope that the Devs take more love on future patches, because I really like the game, and it could be much better"

https://www.reddit.com/r/PSVR/comments/1bemg9t/tin_hearts_psvr2_patch_has_dropped/

You get no reprojections with the Index, and res can be extremely high with much super sampling, image quality is razor sharp and not at all blurry.

Controls are similar as for PSVR2, you turn with the B buttons with the Index controllers - takes some time to get used to, but it works in this game.

If you have a good gaming PC, the PCVR version of Tin Hearts seems to be the best version you can get.

 

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The tin soldiers look quite good, all have detailed dynamic shadows. You have to guide them safely like in the game Lemmings. It's a puzzle game

 

Btw, let's take another example of the impressive dynamic shadows:

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See the small planets? They rotate and cast highly detailed dynamic shadows on the wall

 

After about 7-8 years in the making, Tin Hearts VR has arrived in full version:

"Experience the VR version of the game, designed exclusively from the ground up for virtual reality platforms, where players can fully immerse themselves in the beautiful world of Tin Hearts. Directly control, touch and feel the game’s mechanics, or physically move closer to take a look at the stunning environments and charming toys."

For those thinking, "what is he babbling about - the 2D version launched on Steam last year" - but Tin Hearts launched in early access for the Rift CV1 in 2018:

https://www.meta.com/en-gb/experiences/pcvr/1225876440769401/#?

Surely the early access version has taken at least a year to make, maybe more, estimating that this game started its development in 2016-2017. The game started as VR, but then changed to 2D, and first in 2023 the 2D version was done. This is why - as the devs say in the earlier quote - that Tin Hearts was built ground-up for VR, before devs started making the 2D version. 

I never bought the game in 2018 for the Rift, and later regretted that when devs deactivated the game in the Rift Store.  But it had very few ratings and was early access - I normally do not buy early access. I'm glad I waited for the full version - environments look awesome, here are some examples:

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Examples of environments - you do feel like being back in an old toymaker's room - reexperiencing some great childhood toy moments 🙂

 

In the game you guide tin soldiers emerging from a box to a door - like here:

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My small army of tin solider marching to the exit door - if they fall of the table, they fragment into pieces and die - but you can easily rewind time and try again 

 

Textures are great - I suspect these are from the 2D version - but the VR version (12GB) does seem to be twice the size of the 2D version (7GB), maybe many texture are improved? 🤔

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Textures are great - not as high-res as 7th Guest VR, but great enough. Note the detailed wooden textures on the owl

 

The game has a story told through animations - like the transparent ghost-like girl shown here, showing you memories from the past:

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Note the amazing real-time lighting from the window

 

The game works great with VR controllers, but the devs do not follow standard controller bindings - I recommend taking the full 20 minutes tutorial to get used to the controls.

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You hold bricks to create paths and to guide your tin soldiers - you rotate a brick using the thumbstick on your VR controller

 

There are no graphics settings in the VR version, but you can increase super-sampling. This is Index res 100% (9 million pixels per frame), 200% (18 million pixels per frame), 300% (27 million pixels per frame) and 400% (36 million pixels per frame) - click on an image to show larger size:

 

Index 100%

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Index 200%

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Index 300%

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Index 400%

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Increasing SteamVR res works like cleaning dirty glasses 😉 These images show the power of super sampling clearing up the image - to let you see distant objects more sharply by increasing 3D depth perception. The plants are from the intro screen - can you find them? 🙂

 

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With extreme super sampling the image quality becomes much more clear and sharp - and you improve antialiasing to reduce jaggies too

 

With an RTX 3090, I can get mostly solid 80 fps in 80 Hz with Index res 400% (motion smoothing deactivated) - but I need to reduce to 350% in very big rooms. My rig is described in my sig below. 

This may not be VR game of the year - but it could be. It feels amazing, but I need to test it more. If you're into cozy puzzle games, this is not a VR game you'll want to miss. I'd rate the 2D version 4/10 - and the VR version 9/10. Being there makes all the difference.

Oculus Rift CV1, Valve Index & PSVR2, Asus Strix OC RTX™ 3090, i9-10900K (5.3Ghz), 32GB 3200MHz, 16TB SSD
"Ask not what VR can do for you, but what you can do for VR"

6 REPLIES 6

RuneSR2
Grand Champion

Some good news - Tin Hearts supports Meta OpenXR for optimal performance. I just took these shots using my Rift CV1 ss 2.5 (27 million pixels per frame): 

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In fact, although Index does look much better due to higher res panels and much bigger fov, you could say the game works better with Rift CV1 and probably other Meta hmds, because all buttons are properly supported, like shown in the last image. 

Devs told me they do not have an Index, so they couldn't test the game using Index controllers, and they didn't get the menu button right - thus I cannot activate any in-game menu using Index controllers. But I can with my Rift CV1 🙂 

In short, this game was designed for Meta hmds (and maybe for some old Vive hmds with Wands), and all Meta users will get optimal performance and functionality.  

Oculus Rift CV1, Valve Index & PSVR2, Asus Strix OC RTX™ 3090, i9-10900K (5.3Ghz), 32GB 3200MHz, 16TB SSD
"Ask not what VR can do for you, but what you can do for VR"

RuneSR2
Grand Champion

Just found a monster ... didn't think such shadow-dwelling abominations existed, but they do ... 😮

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- and then you're out taking a stroll on a beautiful day - without a care in the world - and then Sudden Death strikes 😬 😱

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- the monster eats tin soldiers! 😰

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Right now my rating of the game would be 9.5/10 - it's a masterpiece, especially in VR. 

Also you get to like the small tin soldiers - they are quite cute riding the balloons:

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Note the highly detailed dynamic shadows in the above images - on the last image, see the very detailed shadow on the wall, really makes the game come alive

 

A few more impressions:

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Some rooms are just gorgeous. This looks like some prerendered image - but it's not, you walk around in this room in realtime - in VR 

 

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I don't think I mentioned the awesome light before! 🤗 🤥

 

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You'll find many round shapes - which is rare in these times where games are made for very slow mobile gpus

 

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Getting ready to fly 🙂 This game kinda feels like a family-oriented version of The 7th Guest, no horrors in this game! Oh, wait! 😅

 

Btw, some French reviewers rated Tin Hearts 10/10 and said (translated):

"Admittedly, after getting our hands on it last year, we had no doubt about the potential of this unusual puzzle game. But fully immersing ourselves in it has confirmed our belief that Rogue Sun's game is a little gem, which makes us discover the sublime story of our inventor and his family, through a sublime artistic direction, and a stunning soundtrack. And even if it is first and foremost a game designed for VR, it remains a pleasant experience, without this virtual reality technology."

Source: https://www.coupleofgamer.com/post/test-steam-tin-hearts

So they rated the non-VR game a 10/10, even if they knew the game was designed for VR and had short-comings in 2D. How do you think they would rate the new VR version? 😃 😎

Yeah, maybe this is one of those rare 12/10 VR games - much like Lone Echo, but we're mixing genres here 😉

Oculus Rift CV1, Valve Index & PSVR2, Asus Strix OC RTX™ 3090, i9-10900K (5.3Ghz), 32GB 3200MHz, 16TB SSD
"Ask not what VR can do for you, but what you can do for VR"

TomCgcmfc
MVP
MVP

@RuneSR2  Thanks for the heads up mate.  I love Lemmings-type games so I just bought this on the current Steam sale, plus also Hummanity.  Tin Hearts is def more beautiful, esp with my QPro/rtx4090 with Link.  But both games look to be a lot of fun.  I'm still working through the TH tutorial.  You're right about it taking a while to get used to the controls, and also adjusting my play space lol!  If the developer fixes things for Index controllers I may try this with my Vive Pro1 later as well.

Every Steam sale seems to add more games into my unfinished games library, lol!  Cheers, mate.

i9 13900K water cooled, RTX4090, Z790 MB w/wifi6e, 32Gb 6400 ram, 2x2TB SSD, 1000W PSU, Win 11, QPro, Q3, w/Link and Air Link, Vive Pro1 with Etsy lens mod and Index Controllers

Thanks - hope you like it 🙂 

Btw, only issue with Index controllers seems to be the lack of a menu button - but you can access the menu with Index controllers when you start the game, just not after loading a level. Otherwise controls are same as with the CV1 for me - so working flawlessly. 

I'm down from Index res 400% to res 350% to keep 80 fps (might need res 300% if rooms get bigger) - but all is still well, and your 4090 is not at all wasted on this game! 

Btw, cognitively this game feels very refreshing - like a game of chess, lol - it might help build up some cognitive reserves keeping us fresh! 🙂

Oculus Rift CV1, Valve Index & PSVR2, Asus Strix OC RTX™ 3090, i9-10900K (5.3Ghz), 32GB 3200MHz, 16TB SSD
"Ask not what VR can do for you, but what you can do for VR"

RuneSR2
Grand Champion

Lucky to have my camera with me, got a few more shots 😀 

First of all, one of my heroes - very detailed for their tiny size, here I'm zooming in quite a lot:

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- and as mentioned, you get some story through npcs, but I'm not telling any spoilers 🤐 😇

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- textures can be very high-res:

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- and rooms continue to amaze - also this game is big - many, many rooms:

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It's still my GOTY 2024 🙂

Oculus Rift CV1, Valve Index & PSVR2, Asus Strix OC RTX™ 3090, i9-10900K (5.3Ghz), 32GB 3200MHz, 16TB SSD
"Ask not what VR can do for you, but what you can do for VR"

RuneSR2
Grand Champion

Images of the garden are already shown on the main store page, so I hope I'm not really spoiling anything. But there are more than 50 levels, and I'm not even 50% through the game - and just got to enjoy some fresh air 🤗

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I think the game was planned for the Quests too, but it never launched. I'm guessing the cut-down of details and polygons is a massive job for this game to get it running on mobile gpus. I'm down to res 300% with the RTX 3090 to get solid 80 fps with no motion smoothing, but the garden runs fine, actually better than some in-door rooms. 

The game, including the 2D version, only has 40 ratings on Steam - it's baffling. We have the most awesome VR content, and no one knows it. Just like Lone Echo - ask anyone you meet in the real world if they ever heard about Lone Echo, and they'll say no. To me Lone Echo 1-2 are in the top 5 of the best computer-facilitated experiences ever created. And Tin Hearts is high on that list too. 

Tin Hearts is a way to revisit childhood - to rekindle faint memories. I bet this game is one way to reduce blood pressure and fight depression too - or just to have fun, where you still get some cognitive stimulation 🙂 

With more than 50+ levels for $15-20, there simply is no better puzzle game in VR than this game. Sure we got 7th Guest VR, Room VR, Myst VR, Firmament VR, Obduction VR, and while these are great, Myst-Firmament-Obduction really are dead worlds, and 7th Guest VR and Room VR take 4-8 hours to complete - none of these games match the more vibrant world in Tin Hearts nor the amount of content. It may easily take 15 - 20 hours to complete Tin Hearts. 

Compared to The 7Th Guest (18+ age rating), Tin Hearts is for everyone. The npcs are nicely made:

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- with so many rooms, I'm sure the game has a high replay value some months or a year after completing it the first time. 

The rooms are quite stunning to be in - also if you just want to sit down and relax, feels like a time machine taking you back 100 - 120 years 🙂

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Btw, you do get to control an individual soldier - in the last image, I'm controlling the soldier next to the door. But mostly you guide a line of soldiers.   

Oculus Rift CV1, Valve Index & PSVR2, Asus Strix OC RTX™ 3090, i9-10900K (5.3Ghz), 32GB 3200MHz, 16TB SSD
"Ask not what VR can do for you, but what you can do for VR"