Staff at Vancouver’s Best Places played a round of the Far Cry game and had so much fun! We can’t wait to do it again!
Zero Latency used to have just one location in BC, at Kingsgate Mall on East Broadway. Now though they also have a location in Langley, at Willowbrook Mall, so you have two places to choose from.
To learn about Zero Latency and its games, continue reading. To see a couple of videos showing what games look like at the Vancouver venue, click Virtual Reality Game Videos.
TIP: If you use the promo code VBP2024 you can save 10% on games at both their Vancouver and Langley locations!
For the venue’s official website, visit zerolatencybc.com.
This article contains the following information about Zero Latency:
Vancouver’s Zero Latency VR Games Centre
Zero Latency is a company that specializes in virtual reality experiences. It focuses on free-roam games which means participants are able to move around the large empty room as they wish. There are various safety features to prevent any injury. Overall, there is a fairly high degree of freedom of movement, which is awesome. With these games you don’t just stand still or sit in a chair. It feels unbelievably real!
Nearly all of the Zero Latency games are team-based with the players working together. Between 2 and 8 people can participate in each session and the VR environment is a full 360-degree experience. Players wear a headset with a mic and headphones that allow teammates to talk to one another.
Most of the games are aimed at a more adult audience, but there are a couple of family-friendly scenarios as well. To play, participants must be at least 12 years of age.
For the venue’s official website, visit Zero Latency BC.
Where are Zero Latency Locations?
Originally founded in Australia, there are now dozens of Zero Latency venues in over 20 different countries. There are 8 locations in Canada including one in Vancouver and another in Langley.
The Vancouver venue is in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood in Kingsgate Mall at 370 East Broadway. It’s more or less at the corner of Kingsway and Broadway, about a block or two from Main Street. New as of the spring of 2023, there is a second location at Willowbrook Mall at #550 – 19705 Fraser Highway. It’s on the north side of the mall, near the northwest corner.
The Vancouver arena is 1,500 square feet in size. The Langley arena, meanwhile, is 1,900 square feet. There is a fair amount of parking at Kingsgate Mall, and tons at the location in Langley.
Available Games at Zero Latency
Below is a list of some of the different games on offer at both locations as of February 2024.
- Far Cry – set in the world of Far Cry 3, players in this game must shoot their way out of being held captive by pirates on a remote island. There’s a strong narrative plot throughout. We’ve played this game and it was a blast!
- Outbreak – the most popular game (at least before the arrival of Far Cry). Players fight off zombies and find a cure for the deadly virus that’s created them.
- Sol Raiders – the one game where participants shoot at each other. This is player vs. player combat. You’re not actually allowed to play this if it’s your first time at Zero Latency (because you need to be familiar with the setup and how the games work).
- Singularity – similar to Outbreak but set in space. With this game players navigate a space station and have to take down ruthless robots that have taken over the command.
- Engineerium – the one fully non-violent game, this one is all about puzzles. Players must work together to get past different obstacles that lie in their path. Great for all ages.
- Undead Arena – with this adventure you’re a character in a Hunger Games-style game show. The aim is to survive and take down as many zombies as you can.
In addition to the above, a new game coming sometime in 2024 is Warhammer 40,000. With it, participants get to be Space Marines and battle for the Imperium of Man.
To book games and for the venue’s official website, visit Zero Latency BC.
The Logistics of the Games
The game-room at the Zero Latency location at Kingsgate Mall is 1,500 square feet in size and the one at Willowbrook Mall in Langley is 1,900. This gives plenty of space for everyone to move around in without worrying so much about bumping into each other.
With the games, players used to have to wear a backpack, but that is no longer the case. Now you only have to wear a headset and carry your weapon. Everything streams to the 4K goggles over Wi-Fi.
The headset makes it so you can’t see anything outside of what is shown through the game goggles. There is also a pair of headphones with an attached mic so you can hear game sounds while interacting with the other players.
The final piece of equipment is your weapon. With a focus on action, nearly all the games involve shooting in some way. The only one that doesn’t is Engineerium.
The mechanics of the gun are pretty simple, with only a few things to worry about. There’s the trigger, a pump to reload and a button on the side above the trigger to switch between different types of weapons. If you start to feel a little tired, it’s pretty easy to loop the weapon onto your arm rather than hold it. Just make sure that you don’t drop it!
How Much Does Zero Latency Cost?
Expect to pay between around $49 and $54 per person for the experience (as of February 2024). The longer experiences are about 30 minutes of gameplay. Others are 15 minutes long but they come in a bundle with another game so you still play for around half an hour.
Player Safety & Postgame Additions
The other players in your party show up in your game with their characters’ avatars. To help avoid any collisions, a warning icon shows up in the centre of your screen when you get close to someone. Walking into a wall is also a possibility, so there are bigger warnings when you’re close to one.
Overall, the experience is quite safe. As long as you abide by the rules there’s little chance of injury. For example, you’re not allowed to run or jump while playing. That’s not to say that your blood won’t be pumping, as the experience can be quite immersive! Zero Latency knows this, and so reminds players that at any point they can take off their goggles to ground themselves in the real world again. Staff can pause the game if necessary too.
While players are in a team in most of the games, there are also individual score tallies. After the experience, players are shown their stats from the game which are e-mailed to them as well. On top of that, Zero Latency also e-mails all players link to a YouTube page that contains the game footage from their team’s run.
The game footage doesn’t include all the game sounds, so it’s just the overall narration and player audio. Those who want to keep the video can do so as instructions on how to download it are included in the e-mail.
For the venue’s official website, visit Zero Latency BC.
Zero Latency Videos
To give you an idea of what to expect at Zero Latency, check out the following videos. The first shows scenes from our game of Outbreak in early 2024. The second shows a group of us playing Far Cry a few years ago (from when they had older equipment, including a backpack you had to wear, which is no longer the case).
Outbreak Game at Zero Latency
The following video shows scenes from us playing Outbreak at the Zero Latency location at Kingsgate Mall in Vancouver in 2024. As you’ll see, the equipment includes a headset with VR goggles, earphones and a microphone, plus your gun.
With Outbreak, the scene starts with you learning about a terrible disease that is wiping out the human population. Top scientists are working on a cure, but zombies are attacking. You have to protect the medical team so that they can save humanity. During the game, you’ll encounter hundreds of zombies! It’s a blast to play!
Far Cry VR Game at Zero Latency
The following video shows scenes of the game Far Cry as seen by the players, as well as what the players look like as they make their way around the game room.
As you’ll see in the video, as a player, it feels like you are inside a really cool computer game. The graphics are amazing, and the views depend on where you are standing. As you move around, what you can see, and your perspective, changes. It’s such a fun game and you get to shoot lots of pirates!
(Note: In this video you’ll see the players wearing older equipment that no longer exists. Since this video was filmed, Zero Latency has updated their equipment. It’s now even better than before, and players no longer have to wear backpacks.)
Tips & Advice
Below is some extra information to help you make the most of your virtual reality game experience.
TIP #1: You don’t have to be a gamer to enjoy the games at Zero Latency. You don’t have to like war games either. Some of the games are violent, so not for everyone. When we played though, even the person who hates war movies, guns and violence absolutely loved killing all the pirates!
TIP #2: Unlike paintball games, the VR games at Zero Latency don’t require a lot of physical strength or endurance. It also doesn’t hurt when you get hit!
TIP #3: In addition to playing with groups of friends, the VR Games are popular with families and co-workers. Businesses also find them good for teambuilding. You can even play on your own (by signing up for a game that has fewer than eight players).
TIP #4: There is free parking at Kingsgate Mall. It’s good for up to two hours while at the mall, so more than enough time to play a game. There is also metered pay parking in the area as well as free on-street parking nearby (including by Dude Chilling Park). A Willbrook Mall there is tons of free parking.
TIP #5: Don’t forget that your game is being recorded. The staff can hear everything you say. You’ll also get e-mailed video footage of your game which you can then show your friends. The video is posted on YouTube.
For more information, visit the Zero Latency website.
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