by Goran Damnjanovic, Gaming Columnist
Published in Gaming on 7th April, 2018
The Playstation VR landed relatively quietly, with gamers showing limited interest in the first proper virtual reality platform for gaming consoles. The lack of interest was grounded in the fact that the list of games compatible with the device was seriously short, despite Sony promising that hundreds of titles will come out in the future.
The other problem was in the hardware itself. Playstation VR is powered by the Playstation 4 console, providing noticeably less muscle than high-end PCs that can power Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. But the launch came, and soon after it launched the Playstation VR Sony came out with the Playstation 4 Pro.
The combination of affordability along with the fact that now the VR platform has a powerful hardware support in the form of the PS4 Pro drove the sales number forward making the Playstation VR quite popular today. And the game library is in a much healthier state today, with almost 200 titles available right now, a number that gets close to 400 if we take into account upcoming Playstation VR titles.
The big library of games makes picking the best ones a daunting task, especially if you're new to VR. Which games are the best, which titles are the perfect showroom of the platforms capabilities, and which ones to pick if you want a proper gaming experience? We gathered the best ones and presented them in this list. Here you'll find must-play titles that have to find their place on your to-play list if you own Playstation VR.
Aside from being one of the best titles of 2017, Resident Evil 7 also is the best horror title of the last year along with the best title to play on Playstation VR. If you played the 2D version you know what to expect - the game brims with tension, it bathes in thick atmosphere and is filled with horror scenes. The story is phenomenal and presentation superb.
The VR version of the game is a full-fledged experience, identical to the one available in non-VR version. This is a huge plus because there aren't many VR titles developed for non-VR use that include a full experience found on their 2D versions. And the shift to VR made Resident Evil even more atmospheric and even scarier. You will see all the gruesome details on monsters, and running away from them will become a matter of life and death. The combat is also much more visceral in VR than it is while playing the game on a TV or monitor.
The first person view is perfect for VR and those heart-pounding scares you experienced while playing the classic version will be a lot scarier in VR. While this may drive some users away from trying Resident Evil 7 in VR - not all of us are ready for this kind of personal survival horror experience - we have to include it on our list because the game is probably the best title available for the Playstation VR at the moment. If you like horror games, then you just have to play this one in VR.
WipEout was a revolution in racing games back when the first game came out for the original Playstation console. It offered crazy speed, neck-breaking action, and superb visuals, quickly becoming one of the most recognizable Playstation titles. Years passed and many WipEout games came and went, keeping its signature mix of insane speed and intense action.
WipEout Omega Collection is the first WipEout title for Playstation 4 and comes as remaster of two games - WipEout HD and WipEout 2048 - offering tons of content along with impressive graphics. The game saw accolades from both critics and gamers and soon became one of the Playstation 4 best-selling titles.
Sony brought a VR support for the game a couple of weeks ago, making WipEout Omega Collection even better than it was. First of all, the VR version is a full experience. Nothing is cut, gamers can choose any track and any ship to play with, and they can even play multiplayer versus other PS4 and PS4 Pro users.
The intense sense of speed, a signature of the whole series, is even more pronounced when playing the game in VR. Your head will spin and your heart will pound while you pass your opponents at breakneck speed and while you take sharp turns across tracks, trying to shot the ones in front of you before you overtake them.
The fact that the sense of speed is so well transferred to the VR version of the game is a double-edged sword. While the presentation and overall enjoyment are superb, fast-paced gameplay combined with a constant need to move your view in order to make turns and shoot other players will make you uncomfortable after a while.
If you are a VR newbie we advise you to take breaks after every race in order to not get sick. Even experienced VR players should take frequent breaks because the game's extreme speed can cause issues for many gamers. Nevertheless, WipEout Omega Collection is another must-play title for Playstation VR.
If you love fast-paced shooters than you'll love Doom VFR. This version isn't the same one as the Doom title that came out in 2016. This one features a completely new single-player campaign along with an interesting story that doesn't have much in common with the latest set of adventures of Doom Marine we had the chance to experience in Doom 2016. This isn't a bad thing because Doom VFR offers lots of content that's created for VR experience from the ground up.
The graphics aren't as impressive when compared to the Doom 2016 because VR version is more demanding to render, but the game looks nice despite that. And instead of being played like a normal title, Doom VFR relies on teleportation movement mechanic that keeps its pace fast and deadly. You can play the game with normal controls but it isn't as fun when played that way.
Overall, Doom VFR is an excellent title on itself and when put into the context of PS VR it only becomes better. There aren't many FPS games for the platform and Doom is the best one of the bunch, by far. If you want a bloody shooter experience with slick controls and lots of content pick this one, it won't disappoint you.
Gran Turismo is a staple of Playstation library, a cult racing series that was on the platform since its beginning and it's no surprise that Sony did everything in order to make the racing series' latest entry compatible with Playstation VR. Since racing games, when done rightly, offer the best VR experience, you can expect for the Gran Turismo Sport to give you dozens of hours of pure, fast-paced fun when played in VR.
The game doesn't offer a full VR experience, contrary to WipEout Omega Collection, but the available content is one of the most immersive experiences the Playstation VR can offer at the moment. You can pick one of the races available in the game's arcade mode, and we should get Time Trial mode available for the VR version in the future.
As for the quality of the VR experience, we can say that the view from the cockpit is incredible, and since insides of each car follow the superb quality found outside you will feel like being inside real-world beasts engineered for racing while sweeping across detailed tracks and overtaking opponents.
You shouldn't worry about the amount of content since the game received lots of updates since it came out including the addition of a lengthy single player campaign, lots of new tracks and track layouts and dozens of new cars, but those sadly are available just in the game's regular, non-VR version. If you like racing and happen to own Playstation VR, get this one because it excels when it comes to the classic version, with its VR version being an impressive showcase of Playstation VR capabilities.
Although Until Dawn: Rush of Blood doesn't share much with the original game, which is a superb survival horror experience, the game's rail shooter mechanics are perfect for a VR title. You'll live through many quality jump scares and will be interested and scared of what will jump out in front of you next.
The game plays like a rollercoaster ride through hell and in its course will serve you aplenty of terrific moments that do more than enough to justify the game's description by its developers as a "descent into madness." Controls are tight and in addition to classic aiming and shooting at enemies, you will also have to move your body in order to avoid getting hit and getting chopped by spinning blades.
On top of thrilling gameplay, Until Dawn: Rush of Blood just shines when it comes to visuals. The game is made for VR, it's superbly optimized and is able to utilize every bit of power found in the PS4 and PS4 Pro. When you combine detailed graphics with outstanding atmosphere and incredibly well-done scenes of otherworldly horror you get a must-have title for every Playstation VR owner.
Ultrawings is a serene flight simulator that is perfect for when you just want to chill out a bit and forgot about real-life problems. The game plays as a series of relatively simple missions that, once completed, earn you the money needed to buy new planes and to unlock new landing strips.
While the graphics are rather simplistic, they look excellent once you take off and fly peacefully over the ocean archipelago. Ultrawings features superb physics engine and excellent audio component, offering an incredibly immersive PSVR experience that will please almost everyone, not just flight sim fanatics.
The game comes with plenty of content and will give you dozens of hours of fun until you unlock all of the planes and beat every single challenge.
Farpoint got released at the same time as Playstation VR with the game being one of the platform's main launch titles. It was to showcase Playstation VR graphical prowess and to offer gamers an intense first-person shooter experience. Sadly, the game offered an uninteresting campaign filled with narrow and linear levels.
That was a shame because Farpoint features beautiful graphics and the game's use of Aim Controller - a gun-like controller you hold in your hand and aim with it like with a real gun - is impeccable, making it for a superb gunplay.
Fortunately, we live in the world where a quality post-release support can have a huge positive impact on a game, and that was the case with Farpoint. The shooter received lots of free updates adding a ton of new maps that are part of the game's challenge mode, but the most important update was the one that brought multiplayer mode.
Farpoint PvP multiplayer is one of the best VR experiences you can have right now. The game's superb implementation of the Aim Controller is best experienced while playing against other people. Phenomenal gunplay is even cooler when you run around a map, trying to get as many frags as possible. If you love multiplayer FPS games and VR, Farpoint's multiplayer mode is one of those experiences that cannot be avoided on Playstation VR.
Skyrim is one of the cult games of the past decade. Originally released way back in 2011, today the game can be found on every major gaming platform sans smartphones. But the way mobile technology advances it wouldn't be a surprise if we roam the chilly Skyrim in a couple of years. One of those platforms where this huge RPG title is available to play is Playstation VR, and the game just shines on it.
Skyrim is a huge game - it offers hundreds of hours of fun in the form of interesting main story and virtually limitless number of side quests. The world is filled with various locations the player can discover and the VR version of the games recreates this amazing world and gives it a completely new layer that makes it even more amazing to look at and play in.
The game includes all previously released content so if you're looking for a VR title that will give you hundreds of hours of gameplay, look no further. With its support for two Move controllers at the same time, you can strike foes with your trusty sword while throwing fireballs at those who are out of your melee reach, making one of the best control schemes in any VR title, creating an immersive RPG experience that will fascinate even those who completed Skyrim multiple times.
Star Trek: Bridge Crew is an interesting VR title that takes you at the helm of your own Federation starship. This title is imagined as a VR co-op experience and the only requirement to get the most out of it is having a couple of buddies who own the Playstation VR and the fun can start.
Each player has their own role in controlling the ship, with the focus being on teamwork and communication. Star Trek: Bridge Crew offers aplenty of different missions taking place in Star Trek universe and players must work together to overcome the odds and stay alive.
The controls are tight, with two Move controllers, each one controlling one of your character's arms. This gives you an ability to use control panels placed on the ship's bridge and to visually signal your teammates (the game also supports voice chat). You can also move your head to look around the bridge.
While super fun when played with friends, Star Trek: Bridge Crew is pretty bland experience when being at the helm with only NPCs around you, so if you don't have friends who want to play the game with you, or just don't like co-op multiplayer experiences, skip this one.
Finally, we have Thumper, a "rhythm hell" game that continues the work laid out by Audiosurf. The game is a fast-paced reflex tester that asks from the player to mash gradually trickier button combinations that are fixed to a certain beat. Visuals aren't the most detailed but they serve the purpose of the growing tension and constant acceleration.
Music is oppressing mix of bass-heavy electronica and perfectly recreates the game's overbearing nature. Boss battles are some of the most intense moments you will experience in any VR game, and they should be played after a short break, in order to calm yourself a bit and don't become nauseated.
Because Thumper is one of those VR titles that aren't made for people who are new to the platform. It's an in-your-face type of game where everything is made in order to assault the senses as much as it can until you are overwhelmed but still asking for more. If you like rhythm-based games, Thumper is one of the best choices out there, and the sole choice if you want to play one of those titles on PSVR.