Wrench Game looks to bring the garage experience to VR


Wrenching is a lot of things. It’s time consuming. Wholly frustrating at times. Incredibly rewarding at others. It’s also a great way to connect with your car or truck. Now it also has the potential to be virtual. As in virtual reality, because one game developer is looking to bringing wrenching into the VR space.
The above video shows off a prototype called Wrench. Your hands will work in the virtual space to bring a complete car to life. Eventually, the creator says, the idea would be to take the game mechanics at play here and adapt it so that the full game involves diagnosing problems, setting up cars for motorsports, and managing a shop.
From this initial prototype display, this game appears to be moving down a very interesting path. There could be some great uses for this tech, including an adaption by repair manual companies. Imagine this system being used by Haynes. You have all sorts of DLC that exists for various vehicles. You need to know how to work on certain parts of your real life 1974 Mercedes-Benz 280? Download the files, fire up the game, and test out repairs in the virtual space.
We’re going to pay close attention to Wrench as it evolves, and we think you’ll want to do the same.
[Found on Reddit

19 Comments

  1. It will be interesting to see how they simulate skinned knuckles, gasoline irritating your skin, and flakes of rust finding their way into your eyes/ears/mouth.

    1. Don’t forget sockets falling and getting trapped under the intake manifold…or fingernail-sized retaining clips flying out of their perches and landing who-knows-where. Good times…

      1. Or not having that socket, or (my favourite) figuring out somebody replaced that thing with a later generation part so your brand new sealing kit won’t fit making you wait three weeks because it’s a specialty part from an other continent stuck in customs of a country neither the part is from nor you are living in?

    1. Sorry, I have read your post but didn’t understand it, hence my post today. I just ran into the game in a discussion about long-term suction in crappy games, and now it makes perfect sense.

  2. I foresee an emerging market for expansion packs!
    Character Expansion, includes:
    -Surly Parts Clerk
    -Unsolicited Advice Brother-in-Law
    -Questioning Bystander
    -Friend On Phone With Lots Of Car Questions
    Service Environments – choose from:
    -Clinically Sterile with White Lab Coats (like in service manual)
    -Multi-Bay Dealership Hellscape with Indifferent Service Writer
    -Cramped Garage with Single Light Bulb
    -Apartment Complex Carport
    -August, Under Full Sun, In Gravel Lot Behind Abandoned Wal-Mart
    New Titles! Just in:
    -Special Tool J4587: The Search Continues in 3D
    -SAE-Approved Shop Expletive Voice Synthesis for iOS or Android
    -Auto Recycling Center Staffordshire Terrier Simulator (formerly “Nuts, The Junkyard Pitbull”)

    1. “Friend On Phone With Lots Of Car Questions” That sounds like its own spin-off series, Infocom style:
      Your phone is ringing.
      look phone
      The display reads “Max Menace”, your old wing man at high school. At the bottom of the display, there are two buttons.
      press green
      “Whooah Joe, I’m here at Walgreen’s, and my car won’t start. I tried EVERYTHING, but nothing! Please, help me so I can get the pain killers to my sweetheart”
      [you get it from here, dialog trouble shooting, call center style… the Douglas Adams shortcut would be to pick up the bottle of ibuprofen and drive yourself directly to his wife.]

    2. “Pull-a-Part” yard, now with partial Spanish translator, heavy duty tin snips, and sledgehammer.

      1. “Oops. You left your 1/2″ ratchet on the inner fender well of a 1996 Crown Victoria at the scrapyard. Replacing it will cost you 5 credits and two hours of work time”

    3. Each service environment comes with its own set of tools.
      -Clinically Sterile with White Lab Coats includes all special tools, even J4587
      -Multi-bay Dealership only includes 2000pc. Snap-On tool set and one J4587 that must be obtained from Carl the Senior Master Tech. He must be bribed with candy bars and cigarettes.
      -Cramped garage includes a Craftsman 300 pc. tool kit that is 97% complete.
      -Apartment Complex Carport includes a Autozone, made in Pakistan, 60pc tool kit that is 70% complete
      -Wal-mart parking lot includes a pair of pliers, an adjustable wrench, assorted sockets (bot no ratchet) and a flatblade screwdriver.

  3. That looks like an early Miata front suspension. Having taken one apart in real life, it’s not quite this easy: you can’t press in bushings or wheel studs by hand, or lift the entire front subframe with one hand. Otherwise it looks like a very well-done simulation, with very realistic 3D models.
    I could see how this would be a good training tool, but would people actually do this for fun?

    1. I wouldn’t, but it’s like an easy-mode version of the CAD-monkey part of my day job. If I’m going to play a game with that kind of mechanic I’d rather play Kerbal Space Program and have the bonus of sending silly little green dudes/dudettes to their deathsnew milestones of space exploration (which is decidedly not a part of my day job. If a 20-tonne construction machine is on its way to space, something very strange has happened.)

  4. Let me get this straight — It’s called Wrench and then all the nuts pop right on without the use of a tool?

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