Job Simulator Review – Union Work

Job Simulator is just one of those wacky games that grabs your eye when you see it. An absurd concept made in a very colorful and outlandish way. It is a great hook with the added bonus of being at the forefront of VR, an interesting prospect. So how is it?

Job Simulator
Developer: Owlchemy Labs
Publisher: Owlchemy Labs
Platform: HTC VIVE,  oculus touch, Playstation VR(Reviewed)
Release Date: April 5, 2016 (HTC VIVE/oculus touch) ,  October 13, 2016 (PSVR)
Players: 1
MSRP: $29.99

This is a review coupled with a supplemental video review. You can watch the video review above, or read the full review of the game below.

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The visual style is extremely simple and cartoon like. Filled with pastel colors, the world of job simulator is very vibrant. Almost everything you see is or can be used as a visual gag.

Everything visually screams “Pick me up!” and while all of it is simply illustrated it does not mean everything is simply designed as Owlchemy Labs took time to think about how people would pick up and play with the items in the virtual world that made.

With that said, there is quite a bit of clipping in the graphics, depending how you interact with items in the world, and they could have taken steps from preventing it from happening if they spent a little more time polishing and taking play action into account. While that might seem like a minor grip, when you are playing VR games, it really removes you from the experience.

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When we look at gameplay, I have to add a caveat that despite my upcoming criticism, it is extremely fun to poke around the world of Job Simulator. Now with that said let’s break down how VR works in this game.

First, you will need the whole VR package if you are going to play this game. A full HTC Vive set up or Playstation VR with two Move controllers as well as the Playstation Camera, so the barrier of entry for this VR experience is quite expensive.

You will be using your two controllers to act as your hands to push or pick up objects, squeezing the controller trigger to “grab” objects. This movement feel good, as long as you have the space to move around while playing. I can not stress enough, you need allot of space to play this game.

My tiny apartment barely accommodated the space I needed to play the game, and I am rather minimalist with furnishings as I am a tech junkie. I had about a three to four foot radius around my center but still bumped into the desk, wall, and green screen that was behind me. So if you don’t have the space, you will be hurting.

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Another notable obstacle is that even when you are in a spacious optimal setting, your controls can bug out suddenly if you are moving around spastically. Once again, this is something that just really depends on the person, but if you are moving and shaking about, be ready for the controllers to freak out.

Now that that is out of the way let’s actually talk about how fun the game can actually be. This is game that is fun to play and poke around solo, but is just magnified with friends or family around. The humor of the world and the absurdity of a “Job Simulator” for bored humans of the future is highly entertaining.

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The four main jobs of Auto Mechanic, Gourmet Chef, Store Clerk, and Office Worker reflect a level of parody through action that had me grinning throughout the experience.

There is also something extremely cathartic about taking the place of someone doing a retail or service job, purposely performing the job as poorly as possible, and knowing there is no reproduction, only reward. I am guessing this feeling is the joy of working in a union.

While all the jobs available can be highly entertaining, even offering up a sort of free roaming do whatever you want mode, the game can be completed and somewhat fulling explored in only a couple of hours. And it has to be said, that was with artificially extending my time in game by testing just how far I could take a situation.

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Sound design is definitely one of the stronger aspects of the game. It really has to be, as VR heavily relies on this to make the experience immersive. Its subtle in the best ways possible, and even though it’s a cartoony world, they never go full “Blam Co.” when delivering sound.

Voice acting is also especially well-done and fun. The robots guiding you through the experience tend to be highly amusing when delivering their lines, which with keep you grinning throughout.

Now, the game does not have a story per se; you take the role of a human in the future, where jobs are a thing of the past, but there is still some great dialogue and concepts here to explore.

Banter from the robots and dialogue are highly comedic and well written. The game heavily relies on this to make the experience fun and entertaining. Owlchemy Labs walked a really fine line of funny and cringe, luckily landing on the side of funny.

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Job Simulator is a fun game that utilizes VR well if you have the space for it. The sometimes issues with controls can break the experience, but won’t overtly ruin it. The interactions are fun and light, being accessible and enjoyable to the whole family, but the experience is rather short.

There is some replayability if played in groups, which makes the experience a lot better. Even with its shortcomings, and suffering from the issues that new tech normally faces, Job Simulator is cute and charming. If you are looking for something for the whole family to enjoy on Playstation VR or HTC Vive, this is most likely your best option.

Job Simulator was reviewed on Playstation VR using a digital copy provided by Owlchemy Labs. You can find additional information about Niche Gamer’s review/ethics policy here.

The Verdict: 7.5

The Good:

  • Cute and Charming game.
  • Witty dialog and clever comedy.
  • Accessible for the whole family .

The Bad:

  • Can have buggy controls.
  • Extremely short experience.
  • You will need lots of space to play.

  • Rottenjesus

    Coming Soon:

    VIRTUAL ACCOUNTANT!

  • DynastyStar

    VR? Passssssssssss

  • buddyluv324

    I’m glad you guys are doing some reviews on VR games. Living up to the “Niche” in Niche Gamer. I know it hasn’t been in most gamers radars giving the expensive investment and such, but I’d say that VR at least does something that Kinect and the Wii Remote couldnt do and there is potential if given to the right developers.

  • sanic

    So this is for Neets or whatever?

  • Louis

    What do you mean, coming soon? It’s already out.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qutYwlsIL7s

  • Stilzkin

    >wagecuck simulator

    Thanks ZOG

  • Mr0303

    I suppose this could be a fun party game, but I’m extremely suspicious about anything with “simulator” in the title.

  • Zero Eternity

    29.99 for something you can experience the actual hell of just by going out and getting a job in retail or at a gas station and getting paid to do?

  • Psyramics

    This looks like youtuber bait…

  • Fear Me I Am Free

    If it was, all the co-workers would be hot women. Not saying that’s a bad thing though.

  • sanic

    How would that simulate a real job though?

  • Master Bating

    Your tugboat won’t last forever

  • Ganwi

    VR, seriously? Died in 2015 buddy.

  • buddyluv324

    That same logic could be applied to video games in general in a way.

  • Zero Eternity

    I agree for sports games and think it is way more fun to physically do it if you have the option, but I can’t exactly go Killzone Mercenary on my neighbor nor can I go slay a dragon with Ice Magic. I could go to China and throw ice cubes at a parade dragon but I just don’t think it’ll feel the same. Also No Senran Kagura but I can go to a nudist beach for that.

  • Stilzkin
  • VirtualBro

    You could go play paintball or take martial arts classes

  • VirtualBro

    VR experiences are so different from non-VR games that there just isn’t enough baseline to work from to make it possible to understand them unless you’ve played some VR games before.

    Just look at the other Disqus comments from these goofballs, they honestly think that this game is all about doing a virtual job and not a crazy parody of modern life.

  • Zero Eternity

    mmm yeah I forgot about paintball. Now we just need the solution to my dragon issue.

  • Zero Eternity

    Ah I got it! Import a crocodile and try to slay it with an icicle in Winter. Kinda mean to the crocodile though. Not to mention I’m 99% sure I’d come away the loser in that fight.

  • Truth be told they did market it this way.

  • I laughed at this a bit to hard.

  • buddyluv324

    Yeah, VR in general is a whole different beast that people have to go out and try for themselves. Just talking about a VR experience alone won’t do it justice. Even I was skeptical for awhile until I tried pace and oculist rift. There is plenty of untapped potential that debs could get into with the right ideas.