Three zombies stagger towards me. I hear two more behind me, but they sound far enough away that I don’t have to worry about it. The burning building in the background gives me just enough light to make out the silhouettes, so there’s no need to burn up precious flashlight energy on those three. Headshot, headshot, shouldershot, headshot. This wasted round will cost me. I slow my breath as I turn 180 degrees, only to see that the two I had previously ignored were closer than I thought. I back away from the first and whip him with the gun, giving me enough time to get right between the eyes of the second. Step back, one more trigger pull, and the wave is over.

They get bigger and faster in the next round, so I’d rather switch to explosive ammo rather than reloading the flashlight. I’m much less confident about my chances of surviving the next round, but one thing I do know for sure is that the HTC Vive is the only way to get that kind of experience right now.

A few editors here and there spent a few minutes on early versions of the HTC Vive. We were underwater with the whales, desperately trying to survive in the Portal universe, and even in the kitchen trying to make a fried egg sandwich. We’re familiar with the basics and have been able to watch this hardware evolve over the last year, but now that the retail version is here in the office, it’s time to see what it takes to create this experience. After 24 hours on the headset, it couldn’t be clearer that this is a set for beginners who have money in the account.