I went inside classic Windows screensavers in VR and it was weird

(Image credit: Float Land)

Screensavers VR is a weird game, or experience if you'd prefer, that lets you climb into an old CRT monitor and experience classic Windows 95 screensavers in three exciting dimensions. Ever wondered what it would be like to be IN the 3D maze screensaver that hypnotised us all back in the '90s? Well now you can have a good old wander around in that brick-textured labyrinth, as well as immersing yourself in other trippy screensavers from the era.

The first thing you do in Screensavers VR is stick your head in a monitor, which transports you to a three-dimensional version of the famous Mystify screensaver. It's really weird seeing this thing that used to loop passively on my old beige Pentium II suddenly surrounding my entire head.

You can also pull up a menu and mess with the settings, increasing the scale, changing the colours, or making Mystify's lines glow. Screensavers VR is a plaything, really. Something frivolous to distract you for half an hour. And in that respect it's pretty fun, even if all you really do is look at stuff.

Ah, 3D Pipes. Another classic Windows screensaver. Except now you aren't stuck in one place watching these mysteriously replicating pipes; you're flying through them like Superman, using your head to steer. In the clip above I have the scale set to maximum, which makes the pipes seem absolutely massive. That might not come across in a 2D gif, but in VR they feel huge.

Starfield was my favourite Win95 screensaver back in the day, because I was big into sci-fi and it made me feel like I was flying through space. There's a nice feeling of being surrounded in this one—especially when, like in the clip above, you use the slider to increase the number of stars.

And if that's just too relaxing, you can use the settings panel to increase the speed, and even give the stars a cool hyperspace-like effect. Although I had to pull the headset off at this point 'cause it made me feel motion sick. Who knew a Windows screensaver could be so thrilling?

And let's not forget the 3D Maze. I don't want to think about how many hours I spent watching the camera move through this strange, endless maze—which makes being there, walking through its infinite corridors, a bizarre sensation. It also makes a kinda game out of it, as you can now navigate the maze yourself. But there's nothing to find except floating slices of pizza.

And that's Screensavers VR, which is a truly weird experience, and a fun enough way to kill some time. I can't see myself returning to it any time soon, but it was an enjoyable hit of nostalgia while it lasted.

Andy Kelly

If it’s set in space, Andy will probably write about it. He loves sci-fi, adventure games, taking screenshots, Twin Peaks, weird sims, Alien: Isolation, and anything with a good story.