Casual,  First-Person,  Game,  Gaming,  Indie,  New Release,  Oculus,  Oculus Quest,  Rapid Reviews,  Reviews,  Simulation,  Single Player,  Virtual Reality,  VR

Lawn Mowing Simulator VR Review

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Fast Facts

Lawn Mowing Simulator VR

Developer: Skyhook Games
Publisher: Curve Games
Website: https://curvegames.com/our-games/lawn-mowing-simulator-vr/
Genre(s): VR, Simulation
Platform: Meta Quest 3 (also available on Meta Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro)
Age Rating: PEGI 3
Release Date: 21/03/2024
Price: £14.99

A code was provided for review purposes
.

Virtual Nausea

I don’t know what it is at the minute but after playing and enjoying Powerwash Simulator, I am starting to understand the fad with these monotonous chore simulators. There is something to be said about having a simple goal to accomplish and the zen-like qualities that come with doing so.

This is amplified massively in VR, so I thought: let’s cut some virtual grass! Welcome to Lawn Mowing Simulator VR on Meta Quest 3, where your goals are to chop, trim and beautify various clients’ lawns.

A screenshot from Lawn Mowing Simulator VR showing a house with a large grassy garden. A tall tree is growing in the middle of a spiral hedge in the centre.
Needs a trim!

When you first enter Lawn Mowing Simulator VR you are taken around the garage, introduced to your wrist-based computer and you are given a rough tutorial on how to keep your tools sharp and the various widgets at your disposal.

Sharpening blades and working on your mower work superbly in VR. With these kinds of tasks, the virtual space brings a whole new realism and immersion to the most basic of jobs. There’s even a basketball hoop for you to shoot a few hoops and get used to the VR space if required. Unfortunately, this is where most of the fun ended, for me at least anyway.

Wheezy and Queasy

I hopped on my mower and took it for a virtual spin in the garden as part of my first in-game mission. I have played hundreds of hours of VR with very few side effects or nausea. However, after only a few turns on the ride-on mower, I did start to feel queasy. I have driven many cars in VR and I have traversed many worlds but nothing has made me feel off as much as driving the mower in this game. I had to put the headset down after a few minutes and that, for me, was a first. Urrggh.

I am not even sure why it happened. It may be the small turning circle of the sit-on mower; it moves very slowly, so it’s certainly not the speed, and the graphics are clear enough that I don’t feel they’re to blame. I cannot explain it. It could also be the inconsistent frame rate, which is all over the place. It’s flawlessly smooth in places then quite poor in others. Weird. Anyway, I left it a few hours and then returned, determined to get this lawn mowed and try to get over these irksome issues.

A screenshot from Lawn Mowing Simulator VR showing the front panel of a ride-on lawn mower. The player's virtual hands, depicted by two floating green gloves, are gripping the steering apparatus.
Just chilling on my ride-on!

On my return, while being slightly better, I could not get over the uneasiness I felt while playing. I struggled through and played enough to review the game but can honestly say I will not be returning. It’s unfortunate really because when I was playing, as with Powerwash Simulator, the completion of objectives felt rewarding. Doing a job well and doing it right – especially in VR – is really quite satisfying, if a little sickly.

There’s a good game hidden beneath

Upgrading your setup and doing various jobs in a virtual space is a lot of fun. A few annoying quirks aside, there’s a decent experience here. For instance, I don’t enjoy not being able to run, and only being able to enter your mower from one side is weird.

However, I think the devs have done a decent job of translating this game into a 3D space. If they could work on the framerate and sickness issues, I may be inclined to return in the future. As it currently is though, I don’t think my stomach can take much more.

A screenshot from Lawn Mowing Simulator VR, showing the player using a strummer on a patch of grass near some flower bushes.
Just keep strimmin’.

Graphically, everything is well-rendered, crisp and bright. In contrast, the sound work is a bit drab and basic. I would have loved a better soundtrack to accompany my time working jobs on my mower, or even a Walkman with purchasable music. Maybe you get something later on, I may never know. On the presentation front though Lawn Mowing Simulator VR does an ample job of bringing this game to life.

The technical performance elements I have spoken about already. Most things work well, but the inconsistent frame rate may be a factor in the sickness I felt. Hopefully, these things can be ironed out, creating an all-round better experience for everyone involved. I thought it may just be me, but I have researched online and it seems to be consistent across the board with multiple other reviewers confirming what I have experienced.

Disappointed to say the least

In conclusion, I will say that I think buried under a layer of technical issues and nausea, there is an entertaining experience to be had. I really hope the devs can fix the issues I have experienced and if they do I am happy to return. Until then though, I am afraid, the only grass-cutting I will be doing is in my real garden and that’s truly unfortunate, as it is much more fun in VR.

Rapid Reviews Rating

2 out of 5

2

You can purchase Lawn Mowing Simulator from the Meta Store here.

OpenCritic Logo

You can find and read our reviews on OpenCritic.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.