Sony’s PlayStation VR was, and still is, the only VR headset designed for console players, offering gamers an affordable way to experience virtual reality without the need for a high-end gaming PC – and with the confirmation of the next-gen PlayStation VR2, Sony’s VR train isn’t slowing down anytime soon.
The reason why Sony’s platform is so popular is down to the games and experiences available, some of which are exclusive to the PlayStation VR platform. The problem is that there are a lot to choose from, and some might not be as enjoyable as they seem on the surface – but that’s where we at Tech Advisor come in.
We’ve been playing PlayStation VR games since its release back in 2016, so we know a thing or two about VR games on the platform. Here’s our selection of the very best PSVR games available right now.
Best PlayStation VR games in 2022
Beat Saber is the darling of virtual reality, with practically every VR headset owner dabbling in the beat-smashing title at some point or another – and it’s this reason that it deserves a spot in our chart. Of all the VR titles we play on a regular basis, Beat Saber is the one we spend the most time in.
For those unaware of the hit title, it’s similar to older beat-matching games like Guitar Hero, except this time you swap out frets for boxes and a guitar for lightsabers – yep, you read that right, lightsabers. While the original content is focused on dubstep and dance tracks, subsequent DLC brings more pop into the mix with songs from artists like Billie Eilish and Lady Gaga among others.
It’s one of the most satisfying games in VR if you’re into beat-matching games, especially when you hit a SS perfect combo on a song you’ve previously struggled with, and the online multiplayer allows you to show off your hard-earned skills with other dedicated fans.
If you like the idea of music, vibrant virtual environments and lightsabers, Beat Saber ticks all the boxes.
The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners
While franchise-inspired games are often massive disappointments, The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners is a surprisingly in-depth open-world zombie shooter that takes place in the same cinematic universe as the popular TV show.
Set in the post-apocalyptic remains of New Orleans, the segmented open world provides hours of exploration and zombie-slashing fun. But don’t expect a standard zombie slasher, with an engaging storyline that keeps gamers interested and a raft of both zombie and human enemies to take on.
There’s a full day and night cycle on offer, with a totally different experience depending on when you explore. You’re more likely to run into human enemies during the day, but as the sun sets and the warning bells ring out, you’ll find yourself facing increased numbers of infected – and you’ve got to fight through them to get back to your safe house.
Sprinkle in detailed environments to explore, side quests to follow and a real-world physics-based combat system that really makes you throw those punches and swing those axes, and you’ve got one of the best open-world zombie titles for the PlayStation VR platform.
While the original Superhot didn’t boast any VR support, it immediately felt like the sort of game that was built for the platform. For one thing it’s already set in a virtual world, but it also gives you the chance to act out your wildest Matrix fantasies thanks to first-person bullet-time combat.
Naturally, that translates to VR exceptionally well, not least thanks to the fact that rather than simply port the original title, the devs have re-built Superhot from the ground up for VR. That’s principally to remove movement – beyond simple dodging – without breaking the core premise of the game: the world moves only when you do.
That means you now stand, watching static enemies who spring into life as you move your arm to aim your gun or lean out of the way of an incoming bullet.
Each stage sees you fight off a handful of enemies from one spot, and stages are strung together into sequences that you must complete in one go – die in one and you restart the sequence. It’s challenging, but never unfair, and there are always multiple ways to survive the onslaught, from grabbing a gun, to throwing nearby objects, or even to stealing weapons from the bad guys.
And if any VR game can top the feeling of tilting your head to watch a bullet streak past in slo-mo, we haven’t found it yet.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard is quite possibly the scariest VR title in our chart – but we don’t know for sure, because we couldn’t bring ourselves to play it for longer than a few minutes at a time.
But, if you’re braver than we are, you’re free to play the entire game in immersive virtual reality. You’ll fill the shoes of Ethan Winters, the latest new character in the series, as he searches for his missing wife Mia – a search that takes him to a run-down Louisiana farm.
Of course, things take a turn for the worse as you explore the damp, decrepit house and grounds and get to know the family that inhabit it – and trust us, they are just as dangerous as they are demented. As you’d expect from a Resident Evil title, things get chaotic, dramatic and downright terrifying, making for a great VR title.
The only chink in the armour of Resident Evil 7 VR is the lack of move baton support; you’ll have to use the DualShock 4 like with the standard game, and that does ruin immersion.
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
One of the rare VR games built exclusively for multiplayer, Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes will test your cooperation and communication skills to the limit.
The player in the VR headset finds themselves alone in a room with a bomb, and a timer ticking down. It’s their job to describe what they see to the other players – and ultimately defuse the bomb.
Everyone else has access to a set of defusal instructions, which they can access either on the TV screen or through a phone, tablet, or PC web browser. They’ve got to work through the often byzantine instructions to figure out which wires to cut or buttons to press – and let the VR player know.
There’s a whole range of different bomb modules with different defusal rules, and you can set custom difficulty settings by changing the timer and number of modules. It’s all randomised, so you’ll never deal with the same bomb twice.
One word of warning: this is fiendishly difficult, and is almost guaranteed to ruin friendships.
Robinson: The Journey is one of the most hyped PlayStation VR games to date, and it’s easy to see why. From the moment the game started and I found myself in my emergency pod, detail of the textures and environment blew me away. Crytek is famous for creating games with spectacular graphics, and Robinson: The Journey didn’t disappoint.
The graphics are superb and the environment feels ‘alive’, so much so that I felt that I became the lone explorer as I wandered around the jungle searching for HIGS units to scan, and played hide and seek with my pet T-Rex. The environment is huge and filled with objects to interact with, along with a huge library of pre-historic animals to discover and document.
The only real issue is the lack of Move baton support. Using a controller to explore is fine and it’s fun to look around the virtual world, but it’d be much more immersive if I had the ability to scan, levitate and interact with the world using my own hands.
While No Man’s Sky had a famously rough launch in 2016, the developers have done the impossible and actually fixed the game – no Anthem nightmares over here.
The developers have committed to multi-year content updates, all completely free of charge to existing owners, and these are significant changes, not just cosmetics. New ships, mechanics, materials and underlying tech mean No Man’s Sky is unrecognisable compared to the release.
One of the many updates to the game included PlayStation VR support, and it’s not a half-hearted implementation either; it has full motion controls, allowing you to use your Move batons to shoot, mine, fly your ship and much more for an immersive space exploration game.
It’s still a survival title, so you’ll have to worry about elements like oxygen, component crafting and base building, but it’s arguably the most compelling space game available on the PSVR platform right now – and it looks absolutely stunning in VR too.
Dreams is an interesting concept because it’s not technically a game, but rather a place where gamers can create their own games. Dreams provides fans with the tools to design their own 3D models, code games, create music and much more, meaning most of the content you find in Dreams is player-created.
The best part is that Dreams has been out for a few years and the quality has improved with time like a fine wine – fans have had plenty of time to figure out how to get the best from the tools available. That also includes a raft of original VR games and experiences, all available for PSVR players exclusively.
The PlayStation VR mode is also great for content creation and, in particular, modelling, as gamers are able to use the move batons for a more intuitive design experience. So, whether you like designing games or just playing them, Dreams has something to offer.
With actor Elijah Wood as artistic director, Transference always had aspirations to be more than ‘just’ a game, bringing in real actors and a cinematic style to lend a bit of extra Hollywood flair.
That may sound very forward-thinking, but really gamers have been through all this before – remember the ’90s wave of FMV games boasting live-action cut scenes? Still, even if Transference isn’t really treading new ground, it does still deliver on its promise of claustrophobic thrills.
Available to play either in VR or not (though trust us, it’s better with the headset) the game sees you explore the small apartment of the Hayes family. Except this isn’t really their apartment – it’s a digital simulacrum created by Raymond Hayes to house digital copies of his family for eternity, and it’s your job to pick apart exactly what happened to the Hayes family, unpacking a dark domestic story as you go.
You navigate the apartment through a fairly linear story that sees you flit between different timelines, often bringing objects back and forth or using information gleaned in one version of the apartment to solve a puzzle in the other. Puzzle complexity drops off a bit across the games 3 or 4 hours, but there are a few great head-scratchers and a satisfyingly opaque rhythm to it all.
It’s also scary – especially in VR. This is a thriller first and foremost, but it breaks out into horror every now and then, and does a better job of it than most ‘proper’ VR horror titles, with a smart mix of panicky jump scares and tense claustrophobic dread.
The Inpatient is a prequel to the acclaimed PS4 choose-your-own-horror game Until Dawn. That game saw you controlling members of a group of ill-fated teens up on a mountain near an abandoned asylum, and The Inpatient (predictably enough) casts you as one of the inmates back in the facility’s heyday.
Like Until Dawn, the narrative is built around the ‘butterfly effect’ mechanic, with every choice you make impacting the shape of the story going forwards, often in ways that are tricky to predict. That encourages a lot of replayability, and plenty of people will probably want to run through the 2-3 hour story a few times to play around with how it shakes out.
Most of your interaction is actually just walking and talking, though there are also some (admittedly awkward) motion controls dotted around. This is mostly when interacting with objects that serve as clues to the story, teasing a few details that will be familiar to fans of the original game.
Best of all though, it is actually scary. Less so as the story progresses (the curse of most horror, sadly) but the first hour or so manages a nice mix of subtle dread and in-your-face jump scares that should satisfy any genre fans.
The 007 influence on I Expect You to Die goes well beyond the game’s Goldfinger-referencing title. It casts you as a British secret agent in the ‘60s tasked with taking down the sinister Zoraxis corporation, and comes complete with silly gadgets, ludicrous plots, and a big band theme song.
In terms of gameplay, this is a first-person puzzle game. Each level gives you a specific goal – escape an airplane, destroy a supervirus – but leaves you to figure out how.
Most objects in your environment are manipulable, but there are traps and enemies lying in wait, so survival requires a combination of puzzle-solving, trial-and-error, and quick reflexes to make it out alive.
The game also has a wicked sense of humour (What’s in that drawer? Surprise grenades!) and does a great job of keeping you on your toes even as you replay a stage for the nth time to get the sequence just right.
I find myself stranded on an alien planet with “standard-issue equipment” to keep me alive, and the objective of reaching The Pilgrim, a downed space station. The planet is swarming with aliens of all different shapes and sizes, from small spider-like animals that spit and jump at me to huge behemoths that charge at me with devastating effect.
I’m supplied with a single weapon at the beginning and discover more as I advance, helping to keep the game fresh and exciting as I confront ever more powerful enemies.
Intrigued? You should be. Farpoint is different from the rest of the PSVR lineup as it was the first game to take advantage of an (optional) accessory: the Aim Controller. Aim is essentially a gun, complete with triggers, buttons and a sensor to be used in virtual reality, and provides a much more realistic experience than using the Move controllers.
While the tracking isn’t quite 1:1, feeling the gun in my hands and aiming as I would in real life really immersed me in the extra-terrestrial world of Farpoint, and made the overall experience that much better.
Essentially, if you’re looking for an immersive FPS for PlayStation VR, you won’t find much better than Farpoint.
Battlezone is a reimagining of the 80s-classic built from the ground up for VR, and is another personal favourite of mine because c’mon, who doesn’t like blowing things up with tanks?
The campaign can be undertaken off- or online, where users must make their way across a map of hexagonal tiles with each tile representing a randomly generated mission.
The ability to communicate with two other online PSVR gamers in a single map allows you to co-ordinate your attack, enabling us to take out waves of enemies quickly and effectively. It also allowed me a second to appreciate the small details of the game, like the cockpit display that show live information about your shields, bullets, etc.
The graphics and lighting are impressive, especially in the cockpit, and I can confidently say that this game will bring hours of enjoyment to any PlayStation VR gamer.
If you’re new to the world of virtual reality, why don’t you take a look at our selection of the best VR headsets available right now?
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