I’ve never done Tai Chi before in my life, but after testing out the Guided Tai Chi game in VR on Oculus Quest, I feel like I got a small glimpse into what it’s like.
The game consists of 10 short missions that each teaches you how to do one or two movements with your arms and body. After completing all the missions, you’re left with the full set of motions; when mixed with different speeds and directional changes, they can make various forms of tai chi (about 16 total). If you’re looking for something more than just standing still with slow movements like some meditation apps provide (I’m looking at you, Calm), this is actually pretty fun. And if you have an oculus community account, you can even try out some of the multiplayer features.
After each mission, there’s time to practice with your movements before you’re put into another match against nature (aka a rock). Completing these match-ups earns coins, which are used to unlock 16 additional “ghost” opponents for future play sessions. It may sound like a lot of content but after playing through all 10 missions several times in the main story mode, I feel I’ve seen most of what there is to offer here.
The only real issue I have with this game is that it constantly tells you what move(s) to do next. This makes sense on some levels, as people new to Tai Chi could benefit from this guidance. However since you’re doing the same motions over and over again, I would have preferred to have a bit more control. If you don’t want to follow what’s on-screen, you’ll just complete around with a loss.
Also, there are no instructions or guidance at all until after you’ve reached chapter 2 (mission 2), which is too late for beginners – plus it only tells you how to do one move in that mission. It seems like most people would be able to figure out the mechanics of this game without much help, but some tips beforehand wouldn’t hurt.
As far as graphics go they look great; especially given how smoothly they run on the Quest (60 fps). The game looks beautiful (especially if it is compared to other VR experiences that are on Quest) and the audio is calming. The fact that you get trophies for completing certain tasks (like walking in place during a match) shows where they tried to add more replay value, too.
All in all, if you’re looking for something calm yet active to play on Oculus Quest, this app fits the bill nicely. It offers enough content with distinct motions to make it worth replaying once or twice; plus there are some fun multiplayer features for people who want to challenge their friends. Plus at $7.99, this game isn’t going to break your bank either.
I give Guided Tai Chi 4/5 stars because while it may not be perfect, I’d recommend checking out this game if you have a VR headset.