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Best VR PC Games

Best VR PC Games

Tulie Finley-Moise
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Warning: Some of the video games listed below are not suitable for younger viewers. Please use caution and check each game’s ESRB rating before allowing children to play it, especially those rated M for Mature. M-rated video games may contain content that is inappropriate for children and/or unlabeled content that exposes younger viewers to explicit messages and themes.

Virtual reality gaming has been the latest next-level experience to take the rapidly developing world of video gaming by storm. Enveloping you into a world unlike anything found on Earth, the best VR games teleport you into alternate universes with a simple power-on. With each passing year, the standards for virtual reality are pushed, leaving both novice and seasoned gamers completely awestruck.
We’ve compiled a list of the best VR games available to PC players that boast stunning visuals, lifelike gameplay immersion, and unforgettable storylines. Strap on your multi-sensory VR headset of choice as we take a deep dive into the top 10 virtual reality games that should be up next on your to-play list.

1. In Death

Release date: October 2018
Genre: Roguelike (dungeon crawl)
Developer: Sólfar Studios
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The storyline: Set in a medieval world of floating ruins and rampant hordes of angels and demons, In Death is a visually-astonishing step into the afterlife. By learning the lay of the land and battling your way to the next checkpoint, you become the courageous hero that dares to restore harmony in this fantastical world in limbo.
As a roguelike RPG, In Death loops through procedurally generated levels and should you fail to complete a level, you are taken back to the last successfully made checkpoint. However, with a collection of powerful weapons and exciting loot, In Death is one of the most surreal VR gameplays available within the genre.
Why we love it: The sheer level of detail put into In Death will take any player’s breath away. It will send chills down your spine with every demonic encounter and your eyes will widen every time you look up. Surrounded by gorgeous Gothic churches, monasteries, courtyards, and bridges, the landscape alone is reason enough to fall in love with In Death.
For lovers of gore, horror, and ultra-realistic gameplay, In Death is the ultimate combination of everything. From possessed monks and undead zombies to intriguing side paths, there’s a slice of everything for genre loyalists.

2. The Elder Scrolls 5: Skyrim VR

Release date: April 2018
Genre: Action role-playing
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The storyline: As Dragonborn, the prophesied hero destined to save the Empire, you are what stands between a harmonious world and total destruction. While this open-world game is home to a number of fantastic side quests, the main storyline revolves around Dragonborn’s quest to defeat Alduin, the treacherous World-eater.
Why we love it: Skyrim has become one of the most recognizable names in the video-gaming world. Adored for its sprawling landscapes, attention to detail, and memorable storyline, the VR edition of the Elder Scrolls delivers. Dive into an open world bustling with ancient dragons, mythical creatures, and vast landscapes you won’t want to leave.
The in-game controls are among the best features within Skyrim: VR. They’re well designed and supremely intuitive, making gameplay smooth and wonderfully playable. Players have the opportunity to revel in a myriad of customizable settings that allow you to tailor your gameplay however you choose. Options for "physical sneaking," "realistic swimming," and "realistic bow aiming" add stellar gameplay effects and increase the level of full-fledged immersion.

3. Distance

Release date: September 2018
Genre: Racing
Developer: Refract
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive
The premise: As one of the most impressive atmospheric racing platformers available for PC VR-gamers, Distance does not disappoint. A futuristic take on the classic racing game, Distance features challenging race courses that are laced with tricky obstacles that call for some strategic maneuvering. Set in a neon-drenched city that seamlessly fuses arcade racing with parkour perks, Distance offers far more than a pedal to the metal. Drive upside-down, scale 90-degree walls, and fly through tracks without any repetitive lap-looping.
The cherry on top? The hypnotic, ultra-satisfying rhythmic electronic soundtrack that makes full-immersion entirely possible.
Why we love it: Distance puts you in the driver's seat inside of a larger-than-life supercar. Choose between first-person and third-person perspectives as you speed down the runway in solo mode. Arcade mode pits you against ghost computer players while multiplayer mode takes you online, allowing you to challenge up to 12 competitors in a single race.

4. Minecraft VR

Release date: August 2016
Genre: Sandbox
Developer: Mojang
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The premise: Minecraft has become a world-renowned sandbox title that puts the power of creation and freedom of choice into the player’s hands. Equipped with three game modes; solo, multiplayer, and co-op, Minecraft VR acts as the entryway to your grand, cavernous, and elaborate worlds. Regarded as a game with no rules, there is no wrong answer in Minecraft VR. It’s this very flexibility that keeps users flocking to this video-game staple year after year.
Why we love it: Minecraft VR introduces a series of control enhancements that set the game up for infallible success. 3D audio, living room mode, and smart VR turning and controlling makes exploring and creating infinitely more impressive in a virtual reality setting. Switch out of first-person perspective for a brand new look on your imagination’s most masterful creations. The options are as endless as ever with Minecraft VR.

5. Moss

Release date: February 2018
Genre: Puzzle adventure
Developer: Polyarc
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The storyline: A young mouse by the name of Quill begins her adventure amidst the demise of her kingdom by the hands of a fire-breathing snake called Saffrog. Upon her uncle's capture and disappearance, Quill begins her epic journey through caves, ruins, forests, and fields, battling villains small and large along the way. Tasked with defeating Saffrog and restoring peace to her kingdom, Quill depends on your every decision to guide her to success.
Why we love it: Somewhere between action-adventure and perplexing puzzles, Moss thrives. Surprising players with jaw-droppingly lifelike visuals and a storyline that keeps you wanting more, this VR game has been the winner of a number of video-gaming awards.
Each and every diorama tells a story that reveals clues about the world you’ve stepped into. The tale behind Moss doubles as a tragic narrative about the futility of war, leaving players affected in more ways than one. Regardless of age or experience level, Moss is an incredibly enjoyable game that brings a splash of something new to the VR scene.

6. Catch and Release

Release date: June 2018
Genre: Simulation
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The premise: Sit back and relax in the comfort of your own boat. Wade through the waters of a beautiful, mountain-surrounded lake and achieve the ultimate fisherman’s nirvana. Catch & Release lets you do exactly that; catch fish, release them, and explore the sprawling depths of the coastlines. Catch & Release is designed to be the ultimate wind-down.
Why we love it: Whether you’re dealing with a stressful week at work or you’re missing the lavishness of lakeside life, powering on Catch & Release is an immediate escape from reality that places you in a boundless world that is graphically beautiful. Choose between exploring the lake at your own pace, or opt for challenge/objective-based gameplay that allows you to unlock new items and bait types.

7. Red Matter

Release date: November 2018
Genre: Sci-fi puzzle adventure
Developer: Vertical Robot
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The storyline: Step into a dystopian world in the midst of a Cold War. Assuming the role of Agent Epsilon, your mission is launched into the limitless bounds of outer space. Investigating the landscape and mysterious happenings on an abandoned base stationed on one of Saturn’s moons, you become the sole truth-seeker in the vast sanguine realm.
This story-driven VR puzzle-adventure delivers plenty of intrigue with a surreal storyline that unfolds and envelops. Every solved puzzle earns you another valuable clue to revealing the masked details behind the Volgravian space station.
Why we love it: While Red Matter identifies as a puzzle-adventure, it’s far from a frustrating head-scratcher that requires an excess of trial and error. Instead, it’s chock full of rooms and spaces that are interactive-friendly and plenty of fun to toy around with.
On a visual scale, Red Matter is, in a word, satisfying. Delivering an engaging storyline and showing off an impressive degree of polished world-building, this VR game flows, feels, and plays naturally, effectively blurring the line between your earthly existence and your milky way manifestation.

8. Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

Release date: October 2015
Genre: Puzzle
Platforms: HTC Vive, Oculus Rift
The premise: This virtual reality game takes the panic and claustrophobia of an escape room and turns it into a seriously fun party game. A single player is trapped inside of a room with a ticking time bomb that requires strategic defusing should you wish to survive.
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes features fast-paced rounds that call for communicative teamwork and quick puzzle-solving skills. Co-players outside of VR, who cannot see the bomb, must use an instruction manual to guide you through the defusing process. So long as they keep talking, explaining, and effectively directing you toward timely defusal, nobody explodes.
Why we love it: Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is one of the rare multiplayer VR games that does not require all players to be strapped in with a headset for a boisterously fun time. Some rounds are stressful while others are silly. No matter what diffusional challenge you’re dealt, this puzzle game makes a great first and lasting impression.

9. Star Trek: Bridge Crew

Release date: May 2017
Genre: Role-playing simulation
Developer: Ubisoft
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The storyline: Step into the heart of the Star Trek universe as you’re transported onto the U.S.S. Aegis. Revel in the vast uncharted sector of The Trench as you journey toward finding a new home world for the Vulcan population. Battle against the encroaching Klingon Empire and circumvent their plans to threaten the Federation’s plan of liberation.
As you move through the elaborate gameplay of Star Trek: Bridge Crew, each of your decisions plays a larger role in completing your mission.
Why we love it: Whether you’re an aspiring astronaut or a fan of the franchise, Star Trek: Bridge Crew is an excellent digital adventure into the wondrous space haven. The collaborative multiplayer mode makes this game that much better when you have a true crew to venture into the galaxy with. You can choose between a randomly coordinated team of players or connect with close friends and make an unstoppable crew of your own.

10. Beat Saber

Release date: May 2019
Genre: Indie
Developer: Beat Games
Platforms: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Windows Mixed Reality
The premise: Best described as a virtual reality rhythmic game comparable to Dance Dance Revolution and Guitar Hero, Beat Saber takes you for a music course through top tunes and exciting ensembles that require keen reaction times and sound beat-keeping. Use your virtual sabers to slash the beats as they propel toward you in an organized, rhythm-formulated fashion.
Climb global leader boards while breaking a sweat with this top-selling VR game. Compete against other Beat Saber players and scale difficulty levels the better practiced you become.
Why we love it: Beat Saber is a modern spin on a timeless game genre that unites music lovers and gamers in one fell swoop. This game is a great way to get a party started and an uncomplicated way to ease into recreational exercise. Beat Saber is classic and endlessly fun.

Summary

The future for virtual reality video-gaming shows enormous promise that is realized on an ever-greater scale as each year passes. From the exciting new game titles to the genius innovation behind the fast-evolving technology, we’re only scratching the surface of the best VR games, for the best is yet to come.
You can count on HP® for all of the immersive magic and wonder this burgeoning industry is bound to deliver.
With the fast pace of game development, there are always new things on the horizon. But don’t forget the great games of the past. Click here for an overview of the best VR games of last year, even while you explore the current titles described above.
About the Author: Tulie Finley-Moise is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Tulie is a digital content creation specialist based in San Diego, California with a passion for the latest tech and digital media news.

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