Pet Lab for the Oculus Go is one of the more interesting pet sim style games I have played on any VR device. Having a more “fantasy” based theme certainly makes for some very interesting pet designs. This is also a free to play game and while that does have a bit of a “stigma” about it. It does also mean that you have nothing to lose by checking this game out.
There is not exactly a huge narrative that is running alongside the gameplay that takes place in Pet Lab, but I do feel that what is here is charming enough. Basically, you are working at this magical pet store that is called, Scrufflewicks. This is an over the top pet store that sells magical and exotic kinds of pets to a very fussy clientele.
You are the pet store working need to do what you can to make sure that people are getting the pets that they want and that they along with the pets you are creating are happy.
I found the gameplay of Pet Lab on the Oculus Go to be fun and easy to get into. The game does have a tutorial, but it, for the most part, has you learning by playing and I am cool with that. You start off by having your pets in egg form and here you can work to make them be a specific kind of pet that you want. You can make all kinds of potions that you can mix and give them in order to give them the right kind of characteristics that are required. This is fun to do and you do get rather attached to these cute little critters.
You can also level up the pets and this is where most of the actual gameplay comes into play. You see, Pet Lab has a series of fun mini-games that range from playing catch to a target game where you throw the pets! It is fun to do and it all helps level up the pets so that they are ready for the battles that take place. The battles are cool to see, but I do wish that they let you have more “input”. As a free to play game, you can get pretty far before you start to feel that you may need to purchase the pass that the game has.
Scrufflewicks looks like a place that could easily exist in the Harry Potter universe or some other kind of fantasy movie. It is very well done and has a lot of charm to it. Even on the less than powerful, Oculus Go I found this to be a very charming and easy on the eye’s kind of game. I love how the different pets have their own personality and being able to give the cute little horns and tails is fun.
There is not exactly a lot going on in terms of the sound design, but what is here goes with those cute visuals very well. It is kind of like a Pixar or DreamWorks movie in that I can see it appealing to both kids and adults in terms of its presentation.
I will admit that as a free to play pet sim style game, my expectations were not exactly super high for Pet Lab on the Oculus Go. However, I did spend quite a bit of time with this game and got pretty far without buying their pass. I would say that if you do get really invested in the free to play portion of the game then the pass is not a bad deal at all actually. If you want a fun sim style game, you can do a heck of a lot worse than this.