This Behind The Stream feature is a bit different than previous ones as Naiyaru doesn’t have a Twitch account or stream her games in a traditional way. But she is a fellow game reviewer and is a big advocate for the positives of Virtual Reality. A topic that still seems up for debate with many gamers (myself, included.).
What I do know is that after a conversation with Naiyaru, I knew I wanted to interview her. She’s bright, funny and Dutch. Three things about people that I adore. Especially coming from a blogging background working with a Dutch woman (Pinkie’s Paradise) – it’s easy to say that the Dutch have won me over. So I asked if she would explain the benefits of Virtual Reality to the doubters and she agreed and I have gained another interesting friend. One who even taught me, “Vital” Slang. So please , check out her interview and follow her socials that I will post afterwards. You will not be disappointed!
What do you use for your VR sessions?
I use an Oculus/Meta Quest 2 myself, because of the stand alone system. I can take it anywhere, no awkward wires.. it’s by no means perfect, but works just fine for me!
When did your VR journey begin?
Ha, actually at a child’s birthday party hosted by friends. All the kids could try it out.. after they all went home, the grown ups took a turn. I played Vader Immortal and was amazed, but it didn’t really grip me until I tried Synth Riders and experienced the difference VR gameplay makes to gaming.
Do you have a type of genre of game you prefer to play?
Hmm. Flat gaming I love RPG/adventure style games like Skyrim, Mass Effect, Fallout etc. But in VR it’s quite mixed. I play shooters, rhythm games and puzzle games.
What type of game do you like to play when not doing virtual reality?
RPGs and adventure games foremost. I also like puzzle games like Myst.
Do you have a schedule?
Not really, basically my schedule is when the kids are to bed 😉 but if I can I like to cram a fitness session in during the day, and in the evening start up some songs to warm me up and then continue to either a workout or a co-op shooter or single player game.
What was the first game you ever played in VR?
It was Vader Immortal. And though I was mesmerized, in that game VR still felt a bit like a gimmick. It was only when I played Synth Riders and felt myself move and react in a different way I really saw the difference VR would make to gaming.
Do you have other VR partners?
As in official ones? Not yet, but the VR world is currently quite small and niche-y, and that makes easy communication possible with “bigger names” in the influencer world and the game devs themselves.
What is the most outlandish thing that has happened to you while playing or while you were watching someone stream?
Haha, I love that term, outlandish. Well in general I’m always amazed that VR tricks my mind as if I’ve actually been somewhere else. So in that sense every session feels a bit outlandish to me. There are small things in VR that mess with your mind.. sometimes you try to lean into something in game that isn’t there in real life. And I had people trying to grope me in multiplayer and that felt weirdly offensive even though it all wasn’t real. In VR everything seems to actually happen to you personally, where in “flat” gaming there is a distance to what you are doing. That makes some aspects more creepy and raises your adrenaline (and endorphin!) levels quite a bit!
What do you want to see in the VR community moving forward?
More collaborations would always be fun! Lots of VR games don’t have lots of multiplayer options as of yet, so that would be fun. And I follow a lot of creators to keep ahead of development in VR.
What makes the experience unique?
The sense you are actually there. The brain doesn’t differentiate between something being real or virtual. When you fire a gun in VR, you have to hold it up with your arms, you have to aim and even have to fight the recoil and reload manually. It makes your arms sore playing a shooter for 2 hours and rhythm and fitness games actually make you sweat like mad. So you are actually moving, building muscle and coordination. And its FUN!
What would you tell a brand new player or wish that someone told you when you were first starting out?
I would tell them to be mindful of their surroundings before they start, put small kids and pets out of the way, make sure to have enough space around you as not to wreck anything. Warm up your muscles a bit before going into VR and when you are going into an intense session, have a cup of water nearby with a straw to keep up your fluid intake. VR is more intense than “flat” gaming so it needs a bit of preparation. Also, in the beginning, don’t make your sessions too long, build it up gradually. I would also advise them, in the case of the Quest 2, to invest in a good facial cover and a battery pack + strap. The vanilla ones are kind of crappy imho 😉
What is rewarding about virtual reality?
The sense of accomplishment. The feeling your whole body moves and you can feel it moving, feel it become stronger, but even though still just gaming and having fun. It’s like combining entertainment and fitness. Best thing for me. And because VR can actually test your limits, it feels super rewarding after a session when you can tell each other “we’ve made it!”
Parting words/ shout outs?
VR is an experience that can’t be translated to mere words. So try it out, and see for yourself. I guarantee you’ll love it! Gamers and non-gamers alike!
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If you are a streamer and would like to interviewed about your channel and your experiences online please get ahold of me either through here or social media! (Link tree)