Traffic Jams

Traffic Jams Review

Arcade-style zaniness for PSVR

A.J. Maciejewski

Reviewed by playing a PS4 with PSVR on 🚦

Traffic Jams is rated Everyone 10+ by the ESRB

VR is still in its infancy so it's incredible how many unique experiences there are for the platform and here's another with Traffic Jams.

Traffic Jams screenshot 1
Watching that glass shatter is going to be oh so satisfying

Traffic Jams is a silly game. It's played by utilizing 2 PlayStation Move controllers where you point at people with one and perform gestures with the other which essentially makes folks stop, go, or proceed quickly. Considering you direct a large assortment of folks from multiple directions who are either walking or driving vehicles, it adds up to one frantic formula. Plus, there's a solid amount of strategy involved seeing as people can be turning or going straight and being able to efficiently direct them while avoiding crashes is impressively challenging stuff, especially in the later levels. I wish more PlayStation VR games featured original arcade-style gameplay like this.

As you progress through the levels, you'll end up directing traffic in Gouda (South Holland), Paris, Amsterdam, Tokyo, and New York. Each city is unique with plenty of details which really pop in VR, especially with the humorous cartoonish visual style in place. Speaking of which, the sense of humour in Traffic Jams is hilarious, especially the mentor character who has a silly voice, exaggerated animations, and a jealous attitude. Heck, even hanging out in the small hub area can be fun as there are random items strewn about that you can throw around and even duplicate by holding them in one hand and grabbing them with the other. Is it a glitch? Who cares; it's fun!

Traffic Jams screenshot 2
Is this how Jesus fed the poor?

The campaign in Traffic Jams basically has you progress through the 5 cities which you can play at a few different times of day which generally acts as a difficulty select. One thing that Traffic Jams does wonderfully is that even though the core gameplay is solid and highly entertaining, it constantly throws new mechanics your way. Specifically, as you direct traffic, you'll also have to do things like put out fires, pop balloons with Frisbees, swat wasps away, punch zombies, and even perform in a dance battle. That's not to mention natural disasters like meteors and giant monsters. All of this variety is brilliant and makes playing through each level a delightful surprise.

Simply completing the levels within Traffic Jams may be fun but each one also comes with an extensive list of challenges that'll have you performing enjoyable tasks in order to complete them. For example, you can try to beat stages while achieving high scores and avoiding crashes but there are more obscure objectives such as mastering hidden mini-games and finding the mentor character who shows up from time to time. With all of that being said, I still wish there was more than 5 cities. Oh, and the gameplay can get supremely chaotic at times to the point where it's hard to tell exactly what's going on which could have been remedied with a slow-down feature.

Another interesting element of Traffic Jams is its multiplayer mode where 4 players can join the VR player via any device with a web browser. Even though it sounds very cool, the players who aren't using the VR headset simply tap in order to spawn things which isn't all that fun. There is a nifty blend of cooperation and competitiveness, though, because the VR player tries to get everyone to help them while the other players scramble to be the most helpful. Still, it's only really enjoyable when it's your turn to be the VR player.

Traffic Jams screenshot 3
Watch as I attempt to direct traffic with a sausage

I was so impressed with my time playing Traffic Jams that it quickly became one of my favourite PlayStation VR games. The spot-on humour and frantic gameplay combine beautifully into one fun VR experience and I wholeheartedly recommend it to any PSVR owner.

  • + Unique traffic directing gameplay with loads of variety and silly mini-games
  • + Excellent cartoon visuals and humour
  • + Clever objectives add lots of replay value
  • - Gameplay can become a bit too chaotic
  • - Could use more than 5 stages
  • - Multiplayer isn't all that fun
8.1 out of 10
Developer video for Traffic Jams thumbnail
Developer video for Traffic Jams 10:38
Sega Genesis Games Trivia

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