Playing games is one thing, but to actually step into the shoes of the main character and facing all the baddies and challenges is an entirely different yet exhilarating experience, and that is what VR gaming is all about.
VR headsets, and the technology as a whole, started off slowly when they were first introduced to the gaming community all the way back in 2012 in the form of the first-ever gaming headset in the Oculus Rift, and although the initial years after that the games released to be played on VR headsets were nothing more than hastily put-together tech demos.
Even though the VR games did not cover themselves in any glory, they did, however, show people around the world the direction in which technology was rapidly moving.
Now, more than a decade later, slowly but surely, we have dedicated VR games being released regularly on multiple platforms, and even big game developers are adding VR versions of their games to popular platforms like Steam, to appease the ever-growing dedicated and keen following of these types of games.
So now that we know a bit more about VR games in general, without much ado, let us look at the best VR games to dive into to experience all the action and excitement first-hand.
Best VR Games List
1. Half-Life: Alyx
|Release Date||23 March 2020|
Half-Life: Alyx is a first-person, action-adventure game in which players take on the role of resistance fighter Alyx Vance, who must acquire a superweapon from the control of a fictional multidimensional alien empire called the Combine and must look to lead an almost impossible fight against the vicious colonizing alien race.
In this game, players will take part in various activities like fighting the aliens in high-octane gunfights, solving a variety of intricately designed puzzles, and also to explore the various graphically detailed areas present in the game. Players will also look to survive the various varieties of threats they may encounter by using a unique weapon called the ‘gravity golves’, which enables players to magnetically snatch objects from afar, much like the ‘gravity gun’ used in Half-Life 2.
|Release Date||18 September 2020|
|Genre||Action, Indie, Survival|
Phasmophobia is a first-person, psychological horror investigation game in which players must take on the role of 1 of 4 Paranormal investigators, and must enter various haunted structures and record as many details as possible regarding the ghosts present in them, in order to eventually pass them on to real ghost removal teams in the end.
Players have to capture 20 unique ghosts, each with their own unique strengths, weaknesses, traits, personalities, and behaviors. To track and catch the said ghosts, players will use popular advanced ghost-hunting equipment like EMF readers, Spirit boxes, Thermometres, and night vision cameras to help gather as much information as they can about the ghosts.
3. Blade and Sorcery
|Release Date||11 December 2018|
|Genre||Action, Indie, RPG|
Blade and Sorcery is a first-person, medieval fantasy, an action-adventure sandbox game in which players will play as medieval warriors who must fight various foes as they make their way through intricately designed areas like narrow corridors and open arenas.
Players will look to engage with various foes during their gameplay sessions by either using the might of their sword or bow and becoming the ultimate gladiator, or by taking things a bit further and fighting by using classic destructive spells by becoming a skilled sorcerer.
There are no fixed hard-and-fast rules that players have to follow while playing this game, especially the damage they can cause to their foes, which totally dependent on their level of training and creativity.
4. Assetto Corsa
|Release Date||19 December 2014|
Assetto Corsa is a racing simulation game that aims to revolutionize the racing game genre with its latest graphics engines, detailed environments to drive through, dynamic lighting, and more such details and features.
Keeping with the physics engine, the game tries to give its players the ultimate racing experience by implementing certain mechanics in its cars to give them a very realistic touch. The physics engine, coupled with realistic features of real cars not seen in any games before this one in the form of tire-flat spots and advanced aerodynamics simulations, added its very own level of complexity and realism to the game.
If you’re someone who enjoys extremely detailed car simulation games that highlight all the intricacies that go into running a mean machine in the form of a racing car, then this game is one of the best options on the market for you.
Also Read: Enjoy playing games like these? Check out our post on some of the best car simulation games to play today to experience high-speed thrills.
5. Star Wars: Squadrons
|Release Date||1 October 2020|
Star Wars Squadrons is a first-person, space exploration and combat game in which players take control of starfighters, either from the Galactic Empire side or the New Republican Navy and engage in high-stakes dogfights in space using advanced machinery, to see who emerges victorious and who perishes.
In this game, players can select between 2 game modes depending on how they wish to experience the game. In the multiplayer, players of opposing factions will engage in a space dogfight to determine the mightiest.
In the single-player campaign mode, the game continues from where the previous one ended, involving iconic characters like Darth Vader and the imperial forces fighting for order, and others like the rebel alliance and Commodore Rae Sloane fighting for their freedom.
|Developer(s)||Stress Level Zero|
|Release Date||29 September 2022|
|Genre||Action, Adventure, Simulation|
Bonelab is a first-person, experimental, physics-based action game in which players control an outcast who escapes death, and who must now explore a mysterious research lab in MythOS city to either escape his reality or wreak havoc.
Players will be able to participate in many activities once they discover the underground lab like obstacle courses, battle arenas, sandboxes, experimental modes, user-generated modes, etc. At these very locations, players will collect items of interest, avatars, and clues which will allow players to progress through the mysterious and vague story of the game.
Moreover, players will also be able to make use of various melee, ranged, and other special physics-based weapons to engage in some truly exhilarating yet brutal combat.
7. Keep Talking And Nobody Explodes
|Developer(s)||Steel Crate Games|
|Release Date||8 October 2015|
Keep Talking And Nobody Explodes is a puzzle game with a twist. Instead of any old puzzle game, this game tests players’ puzzle-solving skills and their communication.
In this game, players are tasked with trying to diffuse procedurally generated bombs with the assistance of the other players, with the only significant catch being that only the player can see the bomb, and the other players can’t. All the people involved must try their best to communicate efficiently with each other with the ultimate goal of diffusing the bomb.
To keep things fresh and interesting, players can try their hands at new community-made missions and challenges. Moreover, missions scale in difficulty as players keep solving them. Players who prefer to have a more customized, relaxed experience might want to unlock the free play modes and set their own custom settings.
8. No Man’s Sky
|Release Date||12 August 2016|
No Man’s Sky is an action-adventure, space exploration-survival game in which players take control of an alien planetary explorer known only as ‘The Traveller’ and must engage in the five major activities that form the core essence of exploring the uncharted universe all around them which are exploration, survival, trading, combat, and base-building.
In this game, players have complete freedom in how they wish to play and experience all of its features. Players can choose to be the ultimate space explorer and explore over 18 quintillion planets that the game has to offer, or they can choose to be the most feared space pirate in history who attacks unsuspecting merchant ships and steals their riches. The choice is totally in the player’s hands.
Moreover, players will also meet various other alien races present in the galaxy with whom they can speak and trade, and furthermore, players can also recruit them to act as specialists in their future base.
Seeing the various vibrant and expansive planets, each with their unique flora and fauna is a sight to behold and everything looks better when viewed through a VR headset. So, if you’re looking for a game that fits the VR theme, this game is a must-try.
9. Beat Saber
|Release Date||22 May 2019|
Beat Saber is a rhythm-based virtual reality game that places players in a neon-themed world, where their main aim in the game is to slice fast-approaching blocks that represent the musical beats of a tune being played in the background by alternating between and utilizing two brightly colored neon sabers.
Apart from the default mode in which players can play with this game, 2 new mechanics were introduced to the game at a later stage. The first one is called a ‘chain’, in which when players slice a box shown according to the instructions provided by the game, small boxes sprout from it which then have to be individually sliced further.
The second mechanic is called an ‘arc’ in which players basically have to follow and slice the boxes according to an arc shown in front of them that tells them exactly how long the cut has to be and for how many boxes.
Playing this game is a total workout, especially on the harder levels, but one can clearly see why it is rated as one of the best VR games released to date.
10. Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners
|Release Date||23 January 2020|
|Genre||Action, RPG, Simulation|
Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners is a first-person, action-horror-survival game in which players take on the role of a ‘Tourist’, who must fight his way through a walker-infested New Orleans in search of safety, weapons, and supplies.
In this game, players will look to slay countless zombies in close combat using physics-based combat, in which the entire combat scenario depends on their movements in real life, so players have total control over how they use their weapons and in what manner.
Moreover, there is an interesting mechanic in the game called ‘The Bells’, which acts as a timer in the game to keep things engaging and exciting at all times. Each time the bells ring, it attracts a horde of zombies to chase after the players.
The game also features a linear crafting system in which players can use different types of scrap that they have collected during their excursions, either to upgrade their existing weapons or craft new ones entirely.
|Developer(s)||Unknown Worlds Entertainment|
|Release Date||23 January 2018|
|Genre||Action, Adventure, Indie|
Subnautica is a first-person action-adventure game in which players take on the role of a janitor who happens to be the sole survivor of a spaceship that has crash-landed on an alien water-based planet.
In this game, players have the entire water planet for them to explore. The main aim of the players is to scavenge for resources, research new technologies, harvest, and survive the aquatic flora and fauna who will not think twice before ending the journey of players in an instant.
The game offers various modes to satisfy its diverse player bases. In the survival mode, players have to contend with managing their health, oxygen, thirst, hunger meters, etc. In the freedom mode, players have the freedom to explore the seas without the added worry of managing their thirst and hunger meters. The creative mode is for players who want nothing to do with ‘dying’ in-game and only want to take in the scenery and explore the blue world without any hassle.
The hardcore mode features permadeath and is for players looking for a more realistic and intense experience.
12. Escape The Backrooms
|Release Date||11 August 2022|
Escape the Backrooms is a first-person, co-op horror, exploration game in which players must look and make their way through creepy and unsettling backrooms, all while trying to avoid the various harmful entities of all shapes and sizes, to eventually try and escape the facility for good.
The game showcases realistic graphics with minimal user interface or HUDs to give players a total sense of immersion. Moreover, players may encounter vicious entities at any corner in the 20+ unique levels the game has to offer to its players, so the minimal HUD helps players to identify and avoid the enemies well before they even get a sniff of the player’s presence.
The game is best played in co-op mode with other members, especially to give a sense of relief in those eerily quiet moments that players might experience during their gameplay sessions.
It is worth noting that when playing in this mode, all members playing the game must escape the backrooms for the escape to be successful. Even one member left behind is game over for everyone in the group, so tread carefully and together at all times.
13. Microsoft Flight Simulator
|Release Date||18 August 2020|
Microsoft Flight Simulator is the ultimate flying simulator fans worldwide have been waiting for that allows players to experience the joy of flying various real-life planes and helicopters to various picturesque locations around the globe.
In this game, players will have the freedom to explore the skies and travel to around 24,000 airports worldwide using modern varieties of aircraft, to various iconic landmarks located all across the globe, either in simulation mode or in assisted mode.
For players who want to have a more hands-on approach and like tinkering with all the settings in the cockpits, they ought to play this game in the simulation or realistic mode. On the other hand, players who do not want to manage all the intricate settings and don’t plan on becoming real-life pilots anytime soon can focus more on the breathtaking scenery the game has to showcase in the assisted mode.
14. Lost Recipes
|Release Date||27 January 2022|
Lost Recipes is a first-person, historical cooking simulator game in which players will take on the role of a ghost chef who must try recreating various historical recipes in ancient kitchens to reach the required level of cooking and impress 3 legendary chefs belonging to the Greek, Chinese and Mayan civilizations.
In this game, players will cook and create delicious, authentic-tasting food in a relaxed environment from the 3 cuisines mentioned before. Players will look to dive deeper and try to understand what processes and ingredients are involved in each cuisine to create the desired dishes and moreover, also know more about the culture and stories behind the dishes being prepared.
Unlike most cooking simulators available for players to play today, Lost Recipes aims to highlight the gentleness and passion of the chef by not deciding whether a dish is good or not based only on how quickly it is prepared, instead, the focus in this game is more on how accurately it is prepared by the players so that the taste and presentation of the recreated dishes match the authentic versions of the dish which have been passed down from generations.
Interested in this game? Since this game is not on any major platform like Steam or Epic Games Store as of yet, check out the game’s official website to know more about it.
15. The Climb 2
|Release Date||4 March 2021|
The Climb 2 is a first-person, climbing simulator in which players have to scale treacherous cliffs and imposing skyscrapers using their excellent climbing skills and quick reflexes.
In this game, players will continuously look for handholds that they can use to climb the various surfaces. To increase their grip and stamina, players can also choose to apply chalk on their hands.
Players will climb in 5 unique biomes which are: the Alps, Bay, Canyon, and North. The fifth one is the city, which is a new type of biome added to the game that features tall skyscrapers that only brave climbers can hope to scale.
During their climb, players will be given the option of taking certain ‘short-cuts’ that will decrease their ascend to the top of the building or mountain, but these pathways also come with their own unique challenges and hurdles.
Environmental hazards like disappearing and sliding grips, and biting snakes have also been added to the game and will act as stern hurdles for players to maneuver through.
These were some of the best VR games players could jump into today and have countless hours of fun, either solo or with friends and family.
Please keep in mind that VR games are quite hardware-intensive games, so it is all but obvious that one has to make sure to have a decent, up-to-date hardware setup at their disposal before one can think about immersing themselves in the utterly beautiful and captivating world of Virtual Reality games.
New titles are releasing at an accelerated pace nowadays, so please keep coming back to this post from time to time as we’ll keep updating this post with all the latest VR titles, as and when they are released, which are not only worth your hard-earned money but also your precious time.