Latest News

How ‘Stranger Things VR’ “expanded” the story of Vecna

February 27th, 2024

Tender Claws, the studio behind Meta Quest game Stranger Things VR, has spoken to NME about why it’s putting players in the shoes of psychic villain Vecna.

A psychological horror spin-off from The Duffer Brothers’ Netflix series Stranger Things, Stranger Things VR follows season four villain Vecna – also known as Henry Creel – when he’s stranded in the supernatural Upside Down realm by hero Eleven.

Speaking to NME, narrative lead Samantha Gorman explained that two things made Vecna an appealing protagonist for Stranger Things VR – his reality-bending powers, and the opportunity to tell a story from the villain’s perspective of events. “In terms of mechanics, we were inspired by how Vecna’s powers might be similar and different to Eleven’s in a game,” Gorman explained.

Stranger Things VR. Credit: Tender Claws.

“The idea of what makes a villain or ‘monster’ is touched on in the game beyond simply playing as Vecna,” added Tender Claws director Danny Cannizzaro. “In some ways, it is an important theme. We were really interested in exploring the ways in which Eleven and Henry Creel’s stories overlap. They have similar backgrounds and powers. How are they alike and different? What leads one to become Vecna and the other to become Eleven?”

While Stranger Things VR was always planned to explore characters’ dreams and memories, it was pitched before they knew about Vecna’s debut in season four. However, Gorman says this made him a “natural fit” for the game. “Vecna’s story is also one that we felt had more room to be expanded,” they added. “We didn’t want to retread what viewers have already seen in the series, which is predominantly from Eleven’s perspective. Vecna was also a unique, fun challenge to write for.”

As for what Stranger Things VR involves, Cannizzaro shared that players will spend two-thirds of the game “scheming, building up and enacting this great revenge as Vecna,” then switching to Eleven as she uses her own powers to fight back.

For Vecna’s scenes, this involves events we’ve never seen in the show – such as a “full chapter” where you’re tasked with “symbolically taming” The Upside Down’s democreatures. However, it also means getting to see Stranger Things‘ biggest moments from the perspective of Vecna, who was secretly responsible for many of them.

“You play through the moments as Henry becomes an explorer of the unknown and forms the Mind Flayer,” explained Gorman. “You see the attack on Hopper’s cabin, or Billy gathering the flayed, from new points of view. Ultimately, the game leaves the player in a similar spot as season four does with Vecna having finally broken through to Hawkins – we loved the immersive nature of bringing this all to life on the Quest 3 headset.”

Stranger Things VR launched on February 22, and can be played with a Meta Quest 3, 2, or Pro headset.

In other Stranger Things news, the actor behind Dustin has suggested that more characters in the show should be killed.

This content was originally sourced and posted at NME »
Disclaimer/Note: TGM Radio’s latest news posts are a collection of curated and aggregated, fresh content from the best news sources across the globe.

Comments are closed.