Off-roading Simulator ‘MudRunner’ Comes to Quest in Brand New VR Spin-off, Trailer Here

5

Saber Interactive, the studio behind hit off-roading simulator MudRunner (2017), released a VR take on the game that brings a more immersive slice of the original’s action to Quest for the first time.

MudRunner VR isn’t a 1:1 port as such, instead bringing a brand new adventure which includes new vehicles, missions, maps, and game physics too, letting you play completely in first-person, replete with knobs, steering wheel, and a tablet which you can use for navigation.

The single-player VR game includes all of the muck-inducing weather and boggy terrain too, challenging you to traverse treacherous mud, fierce rivers, rocky paths, and more on your way to your end goal—playable in either story or free-play mode.

SEE ALSO
VisionOS 2 Enables WebXR by Default, Unlocking a Cross-platform Path to Vision Pro

While the flatscreen original includes 19 vehicles, the VR spin-off only has eight for now, although it looks to include a good selection of flatbeds, repair modules, log carriers and other backwoods work vehicles.

Also, you won’t be strapped into the cockpit the entire time either, as you’ll get the opportunity to step outside to attach the winch, refuel and more. You can grab the game today on Quest 2/3/Pro on the Quest Store, priced at $20.

This article may contain affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and buy a product we may receive a small commission which helps support the publication. See here for more information.


Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 3,500 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • Christian Schildwaechter

    Porting this physics heavy game to Quest is impressive, but also shows how large the PC vs mobile performance gap still is. I played 2017 Mudrunner and its predecessor Spintires, and the Quest trailer don't come anywhere close.

    Comparisons aren't fair and the trailer probably shows Quest 2 gameplay, but the differences are very significant. The game probably doesn't run at the highest Quest graphics performance level due to needing more CPU for physics. Interiors and environment are less detailed, but Spintires/MudRunner's main feature has always been realistic mud physics and visualization. The 2014 Spintires launch trailer heavily emphasizes this, but at least the MudRunner VR trailer completely avoids showing vehicles carving deep grooves into mud. They seemingly cut the whole visual part (less visible from VR's cabin view) and only kept the (more important) driving physics. MudRunner VR is more linear than the open world PC physics sandbox, but reviews are very good.

    Many interpret Red Matter 2 as Quest 3 now closing in on PC graphics, but that's mostly clever illusion/excellent game design working around the weaknesses of mobile GPUs, instead relying on limiting environments, lights and interactions. Mudrunner as a port would be a more realistic comparison. VR design comes with many challenges and Quest operates with ~1/50th of the PC power budget, and it's very clear that 2024 Mudrunner VR still needed to be drastically scaled down compared to even 10 year old PC Spintires, derived from a now 15 years old physics demo.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      But red matter 2 is a prime example that you can create an almost (decent) PCVR experience with clever development. It's not like PCVR (or even regular PC) is using tricks etc to make it look better. The problem these days is more that a lot of developers are just to lazy to optimize.

      • Christian Schildwaechter

        You can create Quest games visually similar to PCVR as long as you stay within certain limits. You can also render a HL:A environment into a cube map and see the same graphics on an Oculus Go, and people did that. But of course you couldn't move, only look around in 3DoF, as any movement would require re-rendering the SD821 couldn't handle. The same principles still apply to the XR2 Gen 2.

        Mobile GPUs have been trailing behind desktop GPUs with a ~10 year performance gap, mostly due to power consumption. Both PC GPUs and mobile SoCs are build on similar chip processes, but while an RTX 4090 draws up to 450W alone, a Quest 2 has 15-17W for CPU, GPU, display, DSP tracking, wireless etc. combined. So unless Nvidia's or AMD's architectures are incredible inefficient, physics won't allow mobile GPU performance to ever catch up, even if those now slowly gain features like deferred shading or raytracing.

        This leaves smart design/trickery like in Red Matter 2, or the heavy optimization allowing new PS4 games to look way better than those from 2013. Both options are underutilized on PC due to varying configurations adding cost and hardware upgrades being available. So yes, with (non-free) improved design and optimization, we could see much better looking titles on Quest 3 visually close to (some) PC games. But nobody will be able to create a fully dynamic open world physics sandbox like PC MudRunner with free movement, day/night cycles, lots of lights and tons of objects on any Quest for years.

    • DjArcas

      This will be a port of the existing Android version.

  • Eh.
    At least it involves V E H I C L E S.