Review: ‘Please, Don’t Touch Anything’ is a ‘Must Have’ VR Puzzle Game

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Please, Don’t Touch Anything (PDTA), a puzzle game from BulkyPix, has recently released a new VR adaptation of the year-old 2D title. Now built from the ground up in 3D for Oculus Rift and Gear VR headsets, PDTA offers the most immersive button-pushing simulator currently in VR. I wish I was making that up.

Someone asks you to cover their bathroom break, and it’s not really a big deal or anything. After all, he said he’d be right back, and all you have to do is sit in a chair and follow one measly instruction: don’t touch anything—especially that dangerous-looking red button. Do you push it? Or do you wait for him to get back from the toilet?

Go ahead. Push it. See what happens.

pleade dont touch anything button vr
the lights indicate how many times you’ve committed mass murder

You probably won’t be satisfied with nuking the world with an ICBM on your first try though, because there’s over 20 more puzzles to solve and a whole wall to fill with trophies that you’ll earn after every new (and strangely satisfying) way to end all of human existence.

If you’ve played PDTA before, the VR version isn’t that much different in terms of actual gameplay. After all, you still have your console and your trusty tools of the trade to help you along the way. Actively hunting out clues with a black light, remembering complex steps to get you to even more impressive puzzle elements, ones that seem almost impossible on first blush, make for an immersive and challenging adventure that will have you searching for all 30 head-scratching endings—but be advised: solutions are not always the same as the 2D version, and a number of puzzle clues were changed to shake things up a bit.

Regardless whether you played it before or not in 2D, PDTA works remarkably well in VR, and features uncountable numbers of clickable puzzle elements that litter the whole bunker—above, below, left, right, and behind—keeping things fresh and clearly in the spirit of immersive 3D environments. Turn a screw here, pop open a drawer there, punch in a few numbers and you’ve somehow unleashed a demon breathing down your neck right behind you—something that’s visceral and really unexpected from an unassuming little button-pushing sim.

SEE ALSO
The 5 Best Games for Oculus Rift

That said, PDTA is delightfully creepy, and is filled to the brim with some seriously morbid overtones (pentagrams, unborn baby demons, the dark lord Cthulhu, etc.) and there’s great fun to be had in exploring the game’s infectiously weird pop culture endings, with references from films like Office Space (1999) and War Games (1983), and games like Papers, Please! (2013) and Space Invaders (1978).

telephone pdta vrAnd there’s also something surprisingly immersive about sitting down at a desk and swivel chair in virtual reality—likely the top contender for ‘The Saddest Things Ever Said’ award, but much like the Esper seriesPTDA lets the action form around you without ever screwing with your expectations of what you can do in the game, or the reality it creates. Example: There’s a telephone in a drawer that you have to pry open with a hammer—and you better believe I immediately dialed 867-5309 to see what happened. It’s little things like these that keep you searching for the next clue—the next Easter egg, and while I’m not exactly a completion-freak when it comes to collecting things, PDTA really brings that side out of me.

In the 3 hours I played the game, I only managed to complete around 75 percent of the solutions by myself. Like any puzzle game, play time will vary based on how quick and tenacious you are in solving each puzzle. Admittedly, I did sneak a look at a solutions guide to complete the remaining 25 percent, but if I hadn’t, I could easily see myself playing for another 1-2 hours.

My only complaint? Immersion was somewhat dampened by only  a single thing for me really. Picking up the few text-based objects in the game, like folders and information sheets, results in an unnatural reading angle—but it was only a minor nuisance in this highly polished, and massively fun experience.

SEE ALSO
15 Games to Spend That Free $15 Oculus Store Credit On

Attention: The version available on Steam is not VR-compatible. You can purchase the game from the Oculus Store for Rift ($14.99) and the Gear VR Store ($8.99). There’s still no word on when/if the game is coming to HTC Vive.

REVIEW OVERVIEW
Immersion
Comfort
Gameplay

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  • Muddy

    Don’t buy anything from Oculus Home!

    And Road to VR, why are you not reporting on the hottest VR controversy at the moment, i.e. the Oculus walled garden and the breaking of the RE-VIVE patch? … or have they bought your silence too?

    • RoadToVR

      Check back tomorrow (hopefully) – we’ll be making up for lost time.

      • Muddy

        Good stuff, there’s a huge backlash going on.

      • Nads

        Feel free to completely ignore Muddy’s request, most of us have absolutely no desire to read about how Revive has now been broken! Tell people that if you want to play oculus games then go and buy a CV1 and stop stealing by playing there exclusive games on other headsets.

        • Muddy

          Forgive me, I should have been more specific about the point I’m trying to get across. You see, I couldn’t care less about playing oculus games on the vive, I don’t even use the re-vive patch.

          My number one concern is the VR community as a whole. Once upon a time oculus was the supreme champion of the VR ideal, but what they are doing now by enforcing DRM is just fragmenting the community and hamstringing consumer freedom. By supporting them, nothing will change.

          If you can get past the funny voice Francis sums it up pretty well and makes some very valid points regarding DRM in this video. https://youtu.be/eM8jnnuZW4Y

          • XannMagus

            Do you realise Steam IS full of DRM? You can’t use a game purchased on Steam other than with Steam. And you didn’t actually buy the game, but a license to use it through Steam. If you want DRM-free games, you might wanna check out GoG

    • RE-VIVE? You mean I might get access back to my Oculus purchases without having to re-wire my system for the DK2 again?

    • Nads

      This does not concern many people. Why would i not buy something from the oculus store? If thats the only place where this game can be purchased then ofcourse everyone with a oculus rift will buy it from there store. Just because you don’t own a CV1 doesn’t mean that you have to go around telling everyone not to buy the game and force websites to write articles about Re-vive being broken.

      Many of us could not give a shit about revive and we are actually happy that Oculus has broken it. You are being very selfish, you want to play Oculus games but you don’t want to buy there headset! How does that work?

      Simple answer is if you do want to play exclusive Oculus Titles then go and buy a CV1!

      • Muddy

        Refer my post above…

  • Lucas Cooper-Bey

    Getting tired of owning the better rig but not getting all the great games. Bout to pick up a rift too. So annoying and expensive owning both.

    • Muddy

      Save your money. Show Oculus you don’t support a walled garden on the PC Platform. Nothing changes otherwise and the consumer loses.

      • Lucas Cooper-Bey

        Ok. Well I definitely agree with boycotting that kind of isolated proprietary crap. Yeah I can’t afford one r now anyways and have a tone more to experience with the vive anyways. Bunch of games I haven’t even tried too. Yeah hopefully us first adopters don’t continue to be punished for our large suport of a new industry.

      • Mattsomatic

        Agreed! We should all stop using Steam as well. Walled gardens are completely anti-consumer.

        • burzum

          How long does it take to get a Vive now after they’ve announced that they’re overloaded with new orders? I’m going to get my Rift hopefully in 3 weeks but I’m about to cancel it. I don’t want to support that “walled garden”. It’s really sad that they haven’t pushed for an open standard from the very beginning. Shame on Facebook and Oculus!

          • DjNorad

            i got mine 5 weeks after order….

        • dogtato

          How is Steam a walled garden?
          and too bad on this game, I’ve got a GearVR but haven’t touched it since I got a Vive.

        • mamoru

          I’m not convinced you entirely understand what a walled garden is.

        • DjNorad

          Steam uses OPEN-VR and also supports RIFT…, so where is this totally closed?

    • Nads

      Buy both, thats what i did. Oculus is a better headset anyway, just the whole room scale is missing. However, once you have both you will notice how much clearer the screen is on the CV1 then the Vive, also the build quality and headphones are fantastic. They make things so much easier to use. Plus you will get the better more polished games aswell and not just early access demos.

      Ofcourse owning both is the right way, because i love using my Vive aswell when i want a workout and want to experience room scale.

      • Gorilla Jones

        Agreed, the picture on the Rift is much clearer and sharper. Just wish touch was out. But room scale is its own kind of awesome. as a VR gamer you must own both.

  • Harald Heide Gundersen

    Biggest threat to VR not going mainstream is inside quarrel and proprietar software. Thinks all paricipants (HTC, Occulus, Sony, Google (and son) IOS? etz.) would be better of trying to expand the total global marketpotential together. Their relative share of a mature vr marked would be enourmous compared with what they would benefit from a software fragmented vr marked. OpenVR and webVR might help though…

    • Eh, hem. Google’s VR stuff with Cardboard has been nothing but open.

  • Brad

    Scott, where did you find a walk-through for the Oculus version? I picked this up after reading your article and I love it — but I’m seven endings shy of 30 and can only seem to find guides for the older iOS version…

    • Scot Martin

      Hey, different user here, but I’m hoping to find the endings I’m missing as well. I’m currently missing one poster and whatever hangs from the rightmost string on the ceiling. Looking at the guide for the old game, I do not have the City Boom or Papers Please endings (repeatedly hitting reset does not work for me for the first, and clicking on the passport does not work for the second as they did in the old version).

      Brad – if you can give me an idea of some things around the room you have not used for an ending, I can help with the ones I’ve gotten.

      • Brad

        I think we can help each other!

        City Boom is activated by putting the floppy disk in the disk drive (it’s part of the time machine panel.) Then you have to beat the game, which is easy.

        Things I have not figured out how to use.

        – Golden wing panel (I can make it appear)
        – Telephone
        – Joshua’s phone number
        – Radio
        – Hamsters
        – Equation board

        I know there is supposed to be a big symbol panel, if I can get that thing up I am sure I will have fun solving it.

        • Scot Martin

          Thanks! I totally missed there was a disk drive there and never went back to it after getting the time travel endings.

          I have not found any use for the Radio or for the hamsters themselves. Although opening up that machine to see the hamsters does freeze up the flashing colors on the machine which are important.

          For the golden wing panel, there is a 4 digit code to open it up. That can be found on the snake banner under the blacklight. Then you’ll need the diamond. Do you have that?

          The equation board has the first 9 digits of the Fibonacci sequence on it under the blacklight. If I remember right, that is entered into the new input screen that you can make appear on the bottom of the monitor (use the screwdriver on the little panel on the lower right corner of the monitor if you have not flipped the new input screen up). I’ll double-check this one tonight.

          For Joshua’s number, there is a way to cause the drawer section next to the phone to flip over and expose an old-school modem. You dial Joshua on the phone and then place the phone on the modem. Then I hope you’ve seen the movie War Games. I do not remember exactly what I did to flip up the modem though, let me also check that one tonight.

          • Scot Martin

            Okay, I had the Fibonacci numbers correct. Also, the colors off the machine (after you reveal the hamsters) are what you use to expose the modem that you call Joshua on.

            I got City Boom done, so I’m just missing one poster on the right side. It’s a small one right above the two bottom-most posters.

          • Brad

            Man, I can’t tell you how many times I entered that color code, just never did it with the phone drawer open.

            I’d done all the other stuff you mentioned, except the diamond. How do you get that to appear?

            As for the one poster you are missing, afraid I can’t help. I am missing that one too.

          • Scot Martin

            You need to bring up the 7×7 grid of buttons. So, do the roman numerals, push the switch to the left, and enter the 4 digits from inside the math folder.
            Separate from that, you need the D4 that pops out from the upper right side of the workstation. So, hit the red printer button for the arrows, follow the arrows (as they appear) on the 4 buttons you got from the roman numerals. This gets you the D4 and the 3-digit panel with 276 written on it. It turns out that D4 is a coordinate in the 7×7 grid of buttons (imagine letters across the top and numbers going down the side).
            To get more coordinates, unscrew the Instructions sign. There you’ll see D1 and D7 along with with B? and ?4. We combined them to B4 and then hit F4 just to complete the pattern (don’t know if there’s a better hint around for those). That will pop open the D4 container that had popped out of the panel and you’ll get the diamond.

          • wittynickname

            Man, I hope you guys or gals happen to see this, because I’m THISCLOSE to finishing the game and cannot find help anywhere.

            I’ve made the diamond appear, but have yet to figure out what to actually DO with it. The only clue (if it can be called that) is the high-pitched noise it makes each time I remove it from its drawer, which sounds awfully like the beep from the mechanism behind the poster each time the clock hands line up. But maybe that’s meaningless.

            The fact that you are all matter-of-factly discussing a “golden wing panel” I’ve never seen tells me I’m closer to the beginning than the ending of this puzzle. (ugly cry)

            My remaining mysteries:
            1) The floppy disk, which you lads/lasses have just told me what to do with. Thank you!
            2) The morse code card. I know I’m supposed to punch in something on the “Bender” buttons, but it isn’t “DOT” like the Steam version. That space on the desk gives me “DIN” as the only word (that I know). No arrangement of dots and dashes I’ve tried have been correct.
            3) The numbers on the cabinet behind me (either the plainly visible or the blacklight-visible).

            And I think that might be it…? I’ve found 25 of 30 endings, so there can’t be TOO much left to figure out.

          • Scot Martin

            Hey there, if I remember right, there are two codes for the “golden wing panel”. The first makes it appear, and the second opens it, but I *think* you can do them in either order:
            1. If you squint a bit, there is a 4 digit code that you can see on the snake banner under the blacklight. That gets entered in the 10-digit panel that appears when you pull the big switch left.
            2. The second code for the wing panel is a color code. This is tough to get. When you do the floppy disk and win the bombing game, the message you get at the end will have four blinking letters in it. Those letters are all from RGBY and they stand for the colored buttons you need to push.
            Let me know if any of that doesn’t work or isn’t clear.

            For the cabinet behind you, combine the blacklight numbers with the visible numbers. That gets you a 9 digit code. Remember where you entered the Fibonacci numbers that you see under the blacklight on the white board?

            There are two things (that I’ve found) that you can enter in the morse code buttons. One is visible in blacklight from the DON’T DO IT message. The other is found on the Instructions sign, but not in the form of letters.

            However, are you talking about the card that pops out of the clocks behind the instructions sign? That’s not a morse code card, that gives digits for a numeric code.

          • Scot Martin

            Thanks by the way! Your message prompted me to get back to this and I got the final 3 endings I was missing! I have them all now!