Review: International Space Station Tour VR

Oct 26, 2018 by Can Olcer

The International Space Station is orbiting the Earth about 400km above our heads in space and is doubtlessly one of the modern wonders of science. Experiencing the real ISS is a privilege for a handful of people, but thanks to VR we can get pretty close to the real thing.

tl;dr

International Space Station Tour VR is a solid title with a lot of content. It let’s user roam around the ISS and has a real astronaut explain them what is what. A great starting point to spark your curiosity about space travel and the universe.

How it works

International Space Station Tour VR let’s users explore and interact with the ISS. The user can move between 8 modules of the ISS and click on different items to learn more about the science behind it. Actual astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti acts as a guide throughout the experience. International Space Station Tour VR is developed by The House of Fables and is available for the Go and GearVR.

International Space Station Tour VR Video Explainer

A video explainer inside the ISS. Source: International Space Station Tour VR

What I liked

Rather then modeling the interior of the ISS, the developers opted to use photos. It gives the player a great sense of how the ISS actually looks, while saving the developers some valuable time. Of course, being in a fully modeled ISS would be more immersive. As the players float through the ISS, they can interact with items and videos will show more details. The content is deep and there are plenty of things to learn, even for people that are already familiar with the ISS. Astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti acts as a guide and tells users about the tools and instruments they use onboard the ISS, and why they matter.

What I didn’t like

I understand that there’s limitations, but it can get a bit monotoneous after a while if almost all of the content is in the form of videos. I would have loved to see more variability in content delivery, and maybe some more interactivity for the user.

International Space Station Tour VR Interactive Items

Interactive items. Source: International Space Station Tour VR

Conclusion

International Space Station Tour VR is a great free educational experience for all age ranges. It’s fun to go around the ISS and learn about how it works. Bonus points for having an actual astronaut tell you about the tools they use every day. A great starting points for parents to spark curiousity in their children for space and the universe. Give it a try!