5 MORE Underexposed VR Games
Previously, we took a look at five VR games that don’t really get much time in the spotlight just due to the depth and width of the VR game library, and now, because there’s always more treasure in them there hills, we’ll be taking it on again with five more titles from across the VR spectrum. Ready for everything from spying, to pool, to playing with blocks? Then scroll on down.
(And just as before, links will either be to Steam or the North American PlayStation Store.)
Who doesn’t love a bit of tea, gadgets, and mortal danger? I Expect You to Die is a spy thriller adventure with its tongue so firmly in its cheek that it can taste the wall. There are a lot of silly puzzles to figure out, from getting out of the back of a plane filled with poison gas, to stopping the ego-maniacal bad guy from launching a biological warhead, and the presentation is top notch, definitely embracing the canniness that gives this kind of spying a fond twinkle in the mind’s eye.
The only real downside is that, while there are a series of fun interactions you can find in each of the five levels for bonus achievements, simply trying to beat the game end to end is likely to only last a couple of hours, but the level of polish (and promised new free levels coming later this year) are high enough to justify the playthrough when it goes on sale.
There are better gun games on VR, don’t get me wrong, but there’s a reason that H3VR remains at the top of the Steam VR charts consistently. But if all you’re looking for is “put some targets in a line and let me shoot at them” with enough polish to feel like it was more than a weekend project for a first-time developer, Gun Club VR is your absolute go-to.
With hundreds of challenges, both dynamic and prearranged, a good selection of guns with plenty of addon customization and complicated reloads, the gameplay rewards both a steady hand and a consistent reload. The paper cutout versions of nazis and zombies are chuckle-worthy in how they move around, and despite being flat white cardboard, you can’t really beat Gun Club as a structured firing range. Just be prepared; if you want all the guns, you’ll be grinding for them; bad shots get barely a pittance.
There are a lot of features listed on the store page for Sportsbar VR; player avatar customization, cross-play, AI opponents for every included minigame, throw around beer bottles without a care in the world, but I can’t let the game even get more than a brief passing mention of these features in because I need to talk about how good the pool simulation is.
Actually playing the game of pool in Sportsbar is fantastic. Handling your pool cue is thoroughly natural; there’s no dumb control scheme or “press the button at the right time for the power.” You just maneuver the cue with both hands, hold it in the right spot, and hit the cue ball with as little or much power as you need by feeling it out, with the physics working exactly how you would expect them to in the real game. If you absolutely need a true-to-life pool game for VR, this is the closest you will find by far.
Tumble VR (PSVR)
While it doesn’t quite hit the mark of being the Boom Blox sequel in VR that absolutely should be made right now if anyone is listening, Tumble VR does have a bunch of blocks, physics, and neat puzzles that’ll keep you engaged for a good length of time, and it’s as simple as playing with blocks gets.
The main thing Tumble has going for it is the variety; everything from blowing up a tower with precisely placed bombs to get pieces to fly as far as possible, to stacking them as high as you can, 99 Bricks style, to arranging them the right way to reflect a beam of light is here. It gets pretty complicated too; you absolutely won’t be going through every one of the 80 or so included puzzles without hitting one that’ll stump you. Great for the blockhead in your life.
Polybius (PCVR (Oculus only at this moment)/PSVR)
If you aren’t one of the people that immediately dives for their wallet when I say “Jeff Minter but in VR,” I have a little explaining to do. Jeff Minter is more or less a god in the tiny niche of 80’s arcade-inspired shooters. He’s responsible for the modern day popularity of Tempest, along with making Gridrunner back in the day, and he’s worked on things like the console port of Space Invaders Extreme. He’s known for flashy graphics, great gameplay and lots of llamas.
Polybius feels designed for VR from the ground up, despite resembling an 80s arcade game to the letter. The sense of speed can border on insane, and it isn’t afraid to throw as many effects as the lenses can display at you. The era-relevant rock-hard difficulty can definitely keep you going for highscores as long as you desire. It’s one of the most impressive technicolor light shows you can find on any platform, and when you well and truly have your VR legs, you owe it to yourself to challenge this one.
And again we come to the end of our dive into the more unexplored ends of virtual reality, but if you have a game that hasn’t been on this list or the last one that you think deserves to be more well known, feel free to tell us about it in the comments. There’s always one more neat experience out there to go through.
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