With the best VR games in 2022 available, you can break free from your keyboard or controller. The games on this list will show gamers why it’s worth investing in a headset and possibly risking motion sickness.
The ones that showcase experiences that you can’t get by playing games in the traditional sense. You can fly Tony Stark’s armored suit in Iron Man VR, rebel against an alien empire in Half-Life: Alyx, or fly an X-Wing or TIE Fighter in Star Wars Squadrons with the best VR games.
We believe that the games on this list will provide you with the next awesome gaming experience you’re looking for, whether you’re new to virtual reality gaming or a seasoned virtual reality explorer looking for something new to try.
Consequently, we’ve compiled a list of the best free virtual reality games we can think of. Certain games on this list may be exclusive to certain platforms, such as Steam VR.
However, it is the only centralized storefront for a variety of virtual reality headsets. You can even find free virtual reality games in the app library of your headset provider (Oculus, HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, or PlayStation).
Make sure to check out honorable mentions for some free virtual reality games that you might enjoy.
What are the Best VR Games?
While categorizing games by genre can be useful, it’s preferable to categorize the best VR games on this list according to how they use virtual reality. Some of the best virtual reality games are simply existing games reimagined for the new medium.
These include games like The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR and Doom VFR, both of which are based on existing titles. These are suitable for beginners who are making their first forays into VR gaming, as well as franchise fans who want to experience their favorite game in a new light.
Then there are the best virtual reality games that wouldn’t fit anywhere else. Beat Saber, Iron Man VR, and Star Trek: Bridge Crew are examples of this. Batman: Arkham VR and Superhot VR are two games that are a notch lower.
These are based on games designed for traditional controllers, but they’ve been altered so much in terms of mechanics and scenarios that they’ve effectively become brand new experiences.
There’s also multiplayer virtual reality gaming to try. Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes pairs a player in VR with another player who can’t see the bomb they’re defusing but has all the instructions.
Eve: Valkyrie lets you pilot a starfighter in an online match, while Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes pairs a player in VR with another player who can’t see the bomb they’re defusing but has all the instructions.
Half-Life: Alyx is the newest hot property in VR gaming, and it’s one of the best VR games for immersing yourself in a story. It shows off an experience that makes the most of its format without being too impenetrable for newcomers, as well as continuing a well-loved franchise’s story after years and years of silence.
Falcon Age, despite having a less well-known name and being a much smaller project, provides a similar experience for VR gamers looking for a story.
How Can I Choose the Best VR Game?
Always check the compatibility information before purchasing one of the best VR games on this list. Even the best virtual reality games aren’t always available on all platforms. Make sure you’re choosing a game that you’ll be able to play with your headset.
Make sure to check a game’s space requirements as well. Some games can be played while seated. Others may require or allow you to move around in your playing area. For the sporty-gamer hybrid, a different range of games may be needed, but at the top of your wishlist would be a good golf launch monitor like the Garmin Approach R10.
If you have a large room, this shouldn’t be an issue, but if you don’t, look for VR games that don’t require you to walk, run, or leap around as much.
If you’re a new headset owner who isn’t sure which of these games to play, start with the best VR games on this list that have free versions. While many games are only available as VR titles or as separate editions, there are some games that can include VR support.
If you’ve recently purchased a headset, look through your existing game library to see if there’s anything you can play right away. Alternatively, if you’re not in the mood for VR, purchase a game that can be played without a headset.
With Subnautica’s VR mode, you can immerse yourself in the endless oceans of planet 4546B. Indeed, Subnautica being the first on our list, is one of the best VR games in 2022 you can play right now.
The underwater-focused gameplay in the survival game is fantastic, with your headset feeling like a diving helmet as you go deeper into the water. Just remember to take deep breaths.
The objective is the same as in any other game: collect resources to help you survive while you search for a way off the planet. To make things easier for yourself and to protect yourself from the more aggressive wildlife, you’ll construct bases and vehicles.
You might also come across snippets of the game’s narrative while scavenging, explaining the planet’s history and what happened to your crewmates after your starship crashed under mysterious circumstances.
Jurassic World: Aftermath
Between the first and second films in the rebooted franchise, the recently updated Aftermath lets you explore the wreckage of the titalur dinosaur theme park.
Stuck there while on a mission to recover vital research data from the labs, you must solve puzzles and avoid some familiar flesh-eating foes in any way you can.
While being stalked by past killer lizards is terrifying, the game’s cell-shaded graphics make it look quite enjoyable.
For fans used to the more realistic look of the main series of films, it’ll be a new experience, but sneaking through facilities and attractions to avoid scary dinosaurs is an exciting premise that will inspire any VR gamer.
Freerunning is a great fit for VR (if you have the stomach for it), and Stride is here to fill that void. Leap, slide, and wall-run your way across an endless city of rooftops in a race to see how long you can last.
It’s a physically demanding game that necessitates a lot of arm movement to control your character. That becomes even more difficult as the game introduces gunmen who try to kill you while you’re running, but at least you have a weapon to defend yourself with.
This is a game with plenty of potential for virtual thrills, with endless, timed, and arena modes already in place, as well as a story mode on the way.
Thumper is unlike any other rhythm game you’ve ever played. While timing your inputs to the music remains a challenge, the environment and tracks themselves are purposefully brutal, making each stage feel like a battle.
As a gleaming “space beetle,” you must hit the track’s pads correctly while shifting lanes and avoiding danger spots or even enemy attacks.
After you’ve completed the level, you can move on to the next one or try for a higher score. Alternatively, given the game’s relentless tone, you may simply need to remove your headset and take five.
Microsoft Flight Simulator (PC)
The stunning views and meticulously detailed aircraft of this flight simulator are simply delicious to experience even without a VR headset. When you add a compatible headset to the mix, it’s undeniably one of the best VR games available.
You can examine all the buttons and switches up close and gain an extra level of immersion as you take off and land at airports around the world, fly through the clouds, and admire the landscapes below thanks to the first-person viewpoint provided by your helmet.
If that sounds a little daunting, you’ll be relieved to learn that the game allows you to customize how much of your plane’s controls are controlled automatically or manually.
If you want something more relaxing, you can simply let the game handle the difficult tasks while you enjoy flying around. You can remove the training wheels and tinker to your heart’s content if you want to feel like a real pilot.
Star Wars: Squadrons (PC, PSVR)
Star Wars Squadrons is the latest and greatest way to experience space combat set in the timeline of the saga’s original trilogy, with a first-person view out of your X-Wing or TIE Fighter cockpit.
Depending on the mission, you can customize your chosen fighter from a list of well-known Star Wars spacecraft to make it look and perform more as you want.
There’s also a single-player campaign to enjoy, with the Rebels and the Empire each getting their own take on the story. If fighting AI-controlled opponents isn’t enough for you, there’s also online multiplayer where you can prove your worth as a pilot.
Falcon Age (PC | PSVR | Oculus Quest)
In this adventure game, you and your pet bird of prey are pitted against the world. Your home planet has been taken over by a robot empire, and the only logical thing to do now that you’ve escaped prison with your new falcon friend is to fight back.
Your falcon learns new tricks and abilities as it matures from a chick to an adult to assist you on your journey. You can also dress it up in adorable costumes.
With the falcon on one arm and a stun baton on the other, you’ll be tasked by the resistance with liberating areas of the map from machine control and restoring hope to a community that hasn’t had much of it.
With an uplifting story set in a beautifully rendered world, it’s one of the best VR games for players looking to lose themselves in a virtual world.
Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series (Oculus | PSVR)
The galaxy’s most famous Sith Lord resides in a fortress on the planet Mustafar, surrounded by lava and burning rock. And, despite the fact that you’re just a regular smuggler, you’ll have to infiltrate the facility and figure out what Vader is looking for.
The game is divided into three sections, with your role in the story gradually becoming clearer as you progress. Your path forward is blocked by enemies that you can defeat with your lightsaber, as well as puzzles that you must solve using your mind and physics objects.
If you want to take a break from the story, you can visit the game’s Lightsaber Dojo, where you can learn how to use your elegant weapon from a more civilized era.
Iron Man VR (PSVR)
Here’s one of the best, if not the best, virtual reality games for imagining yourself as a member of the Avengers.
You take control of the Iron Man suit, staring through its familiar HUD as you navigate the environment, punching and firing energy blasts at your enemies. Back at base, you can customize your suit in first-person mode, giving you a different perspective on Tony Stark.
There’s also a story to experience (though it’s not a canon story if you’re interested), with the game’s campaign pitting Stark and company against hacker super-villain Ghost, but other good and evil characters will appear as well.
Half-Life: Alyx (Valve Index | HTC Vive | Oculus Rift | Windows Mixed Reality)
This game allows you to return to the Half-Life universe after a 13-year hiatus, but not in the way you might expect. You’ll be fighting through City 17 one at a time, taking the place of Alyx Vance rather than Gordon Freeman, before the unlucky physicist arrives.
That means shooting Combine soldiers and other alien enemies, as well as solving puzzles that require your new VR control scheme.
It may be difficult to forgive Valve for keeping fans waiting so long for the next installment of this game series, but there isn’t a better example of what virtual reality can do than this game.
Pistol Whip (PSVR | PC)
Pistol Whip is a mix of a first-person shooter and a rhythm game that transports you to a world with a striking art style of simple shapes in exotic colors.
Once you’ve chosen a level, the game is incredibly simple to play: point and shoot at enemies, reload by pointing at the floor, and dodge bullets by moving your head.
You’re propelled along rails, but your primary goal is to shoot enemies to the beat of the game’s EDM soundtrack, which earns you more points.
When you feel like you’ve gotten the hang of things, experiment with the game’s plethora of gameplay modifiers, or purchase the game’s recently released Pistol Whip 2089 expansion DLC.
It’s a game you’ll want to play again and again, either to beat your high score or to enjoy the sensation of making a string of headshots while listening to a fast synth bass riff.
No Man’s Sky VR (PSVR | Oculus Rift | HTC Vive)
On a VR headset, you can play the famous (and infamous) space exploration game. You can be thrust into the heart of the new worlds you discover, or you can sit in your ship’s cockpit and truly appreciate the vastness of space.
And, because the galaxy is so vast, you’ll never run out of new things to see and discover as you search for resources to upgrade your ship and travel even further.
You might not know what else you can do in-game if you haven’t paid attention to the game’s numerous updates since its rocky launch.
No Man’s Sky’s recent expansions include multiplayer, capital ship and fleet management, base building, and more, all of which will work with the VR version (itself a part of these expansions).
It’s the best way to get a feel for the game, whether you’re new to it or have played hundreds of hours of the original.
Beat Saber (Oculus Rift | PSVR | HTC Vive)
Beat Saber is a fast-paced rhythm game in which the player slashes color-coded blocks to the beat of background music, and it’s one of the best VR games for working up a sweat.
You’ll swipe in the air vertically or horizontally with two motion controllers, occasionally holding your controller in a position to rack up points.
Beat Saber is a seated experience that comes with ten songs. PC players, on the other hand, can use a track editor within the game to create their own custom tracks, and with some light modding, they can also download other users’ tracks.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR (Oculus Rift | PSVR | HTC Vive)
A full VR translation of 2011’s single-player, the open-world epic was unavoidable for a game that appears to be available on every console.
Skyrim VR allows players to get a much closer look at Tamriel’s world. You’ll be able to swing your sword and block incoming attacks with realistic gestures thanks to the game’s fully tracked motion controls for your left and right-hand equipment.
This version of Skyrim includes all previously released DLC expansions, such as Dawnguard and Hearthfire. The only drawback is that the graphical upgrade found in the Special Edition is not available in the VR version of Skyrim, so some visuals may appear dated.
Star Trek: Bridge Crew (Oculus Rift | PSVR | HTC Vive)
You can choose from four different key roles onboard the USS Aegis in Star Trek: Bridge Crew: a Captain who keeps track of the objectives and gives orders; a Tactical Officer who manages sensors and weaponry; the Helm Officer who controls the ship’s course and speed; or the Engineer who handles power management and any repairs the Aegis may require.
As you explore space, defend yourself from enemies, and avoid natural hazards, Bridge Crew will require constant communication with your crewmates.
The game is best played in online multiplayer, but if you’re playing alone, you can give specific voice commands to three AI crew members.
Archangel: Hellfire (Oculus Rift | PSVR | HTC Vive)
Archangel is a mech shooter for the PS4 and PC that includes a single-player story campaign. This campaign puts you in the driver’s seat of a massive mech in an on-rails experience that’s best enjoyed while seated.
You’ll be in charge of the mech’s two arms and a variety of weapons, which you’ll use to dispatch waves of incoming enemies.
A standalone competitive multiplayer mode is available for free on the PC version. You’ll also have complete control over your mech, allowing you to move in any direction, as well as a robust upgrade path and unlockable mech chassis and skins.
If you buy the campaign DLC on Steam, you’ll get some multiplayer bonuses as well. For those looking for a full-fledged AAA experience in a VR headset, this is one of the best options.
Doom VFR (PSVR | HTC Vive)
Doom VFR is more of a VR adaptation of Doom’s popular reboot from 2016, rather than a full VR port of the game. This means Doom VFR has a new story and campaign, as well as heavily tweaked combat dynamics designed specifically for VR.
Because the game frequently requires you to raise and lower your profile and turn around quickly to deal with enemies coming from all directions, this title is best played in a standing or room-scale setup.
Although this title allows for free movement with the use of a controller, the game was originally intended to be played with a teleportation system to cover large distances.
Since Doom: Eternal was released recently, this is no longer the newest Doom title. However, this feature isn’t available in VR, making Doom VFR the best option for tearing demons apart with a maximum immersion right now.
Rec Room (Oculus Rift | PSVR | HTC Vive)
Rec Room is one of the best VR games for unwinding and relaxing, or for beginners who are afraid of motion sickness from more intense games.
This game offers a low-impact, free social sandbox with places to visit, things to pick up and toss, objects to interact with, and minigames to play solo or with others online. This game works well with room-scale and can be played in either a seated or standing position.
Rec Room is primarily intended to be a social experience, so expect a lot of people to be on mic, and consider joining in the conversation.
Rec room isn’t going to give you an infinitely replayable game world to explore, but it should help people who are just getting their VR feet wet before moving on to more in-depth experiences.
Batman: Arkham VR (Oculus Rift | PSVR | HTC Vive)
Batman: Arkham VR immerses you in the Batsuit, allowing you to take to the streets of Arkham City and fight crime. Because this game was released in the early days of virtual reality, it feels a lot like an extended, albeit well-polished tech demo for a full-fledged Batman VR game.
You’ll only be able to teleport to specific locations in the Wayne Manor, the bat cave, and the city, with the majority of direct action consisting of throwing a bat-arang or requesting assistance from your ship, the Nightwing.
The game focuses on Batman’s detective side, so if you’re looking for something more cinematic and slower-paced, this one might be worth your time.
You’ll have plenty of chances to look around, pick things up, study crime scenes, and otherwise immerse yourself in Bruce Wayne’s world, mostly at your leisure.
Fallout 4 VR (HTC Vive)
Fallout 4 has received the full VR treatment, similar to Skyrim and its VR edition, bringing the entire single-player campaign to HTC Vive headsets on PC.
This transports you to a post-apocalyptic version of Boston, where you’ll encounter a variety of people, monsters, and machines attempting to survive in this harsh new world while searching for a missing family member.
The VR adaptation works similarly to Skyrim VR, allowing you to walk around the world of Fallout on a room-scale level, use direct control stick movement on your controllers, travel from point to point via teleportation or any combination of the above.
This doesn’t rule out seated gameplay entirely, but it encourages standing and at least some turning and walking around.
The Talos Principle VR (Oculus Rift | HTC Vive)
The Talos Principle is a first-person puzzle game that can easily be converted to VR and is adaptable to any play-space setup. No doubt, Talos Principle is one of the best games in 2022.
You’ll have to line up light beams to turn on and off force fields that block your path, manipulate blocks with motion controls, and solve other mind-bending puzzles while avoiding drones that try to stop you in this game.
Whereas many of the best VR games focus on action, The Talos Principle takes a more relaxed and cerebral approach.
This also applies to the story of the game’s single-player campaign. You play as an android who is guided by a mysterious voice as you learn about humanity’s final days on Earth and your role within it.
LA Noire: The VR Case Files (HTC Vive)
L.A. Noire: The VR Case Files brings a portion of the critically acclaimed PS3 and Xbox 360 game to the HTC Vive. In this VR version of the game, you’ll have seven cases to solve.
You’ll need to gather clues and question suspects, just like in the original, depending on whether you think they’re telling the truth or lying to you.
Face motion capture is famously used in L.A. Noise to make the characters look extremely realistic, and it still works seven years later.
The game recommends a minimum of 2 by 2 meters of room space to move around in so that you can lean in and inspect items in people’s homes, pick things up off the ground, and comfortably navigate the game’s open world.
You’ll have a blast in this historic detective simulation if you can figure out how to set it up.
Superhot VR (Oculus Rift | PS VR | HTC Vive)
Superhot VR is a combat puzzle game similar to the original Superhot in which you must clear a room full of enemy AI humans using a limited arsenal and one key mechanic: time only moves when you do.
The VR version of the game is primarily a standing experience; you won’t be able to walk around your environment, but you will need to be able to turn around and duck behind cover in the limited space available.
Superhot VR is one of the best VR games you can play on any platform because you can take weapons from enemies’ hands and fire bullets at incoming bullets to deflect them.
Polybius (PS VR)
Polybius is the oddest game on our list, as well as the one most likely to make you dizzy. It’s best to play this one while seated, and if you have a weak stomach, start with a regular TV.
Even outside of VR, the game is a high-score, arcade-style shoot ’em-up with psychedelic “trancetastic” visual design and a truly awesome sense of speed.
Apart from shooting as many things ahead of you as possible while avoiding collisions with the solid objects that come hurtling toward you during the game’s 50 linear levels, it’s a little difficult to explain exactly what you need to do in Polybius.
Eve: Valkyrie (Oculus Rift | PS VR | HTC Vive)
Eve: Valkyrie is a competitive multiplayer spaceship game set in the Eve Online universe. You are placed in large battle arenas and must shoot down the opposing team’s spaceships.
There is no offline single-player mode or traditional campaign; instead, you are placed in large battle arenas and must shoot down the opposing team’s spaceships.
You can choose from a variety of ship classes, each with its own set of skills and roles to fulfill during a match. You can choose from five different multiplayer modes.
This game is meant to be played while seated, with either a traditional controller or a keyboard and mouse. Eve: Valkyrie uses head tracking to help you see around your ship from inside the cockpit, but the game doesn’t rely on motion-controller input otherwise.
Eve: Valkyrie is one of the best VR games out there if you’re looking for a truly immersive space combat experience.
Astro Bot: Rescue Mission (PS VR)
Astro Bot: Rescue Mission is a PlayStation VR exclusive that may be one of the best VR games you can play in 2022. You play as Astro, a small robot tasked with rescuing his robot friends scattered throughout each level.
Because you’re viewing the game from a third-person perspective, you’ll have to bend down, turn around, and look closely at the environment to spot the trapped robots and other hidden collectibles. If you want to succeed, you’ll have to concentrate on both your own position and Astro’s.
The game exemplifies the kind of platforming and creative camera control that can only be achieved in virtual reality. To get past the obstacles and find all of the robots in each level, as well as take on bosses at the end of each world, you’ll need to use a variety of gadgets.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard (PS VR)
When you put on your VR headset, the first first-person installment of the well-known horror franchise works even better.
The horror in Resident Evil 7 is amplified when you put yourself in the shoes of Ethan Winters in the Louisiana swamp, and the game’s VR support is exclusive to PS VR.
This first-person horror game returns to Resident Evil’s survival roots as Winters searches for his missing wife, Mia, and requires you to carefully manage your inventory and resources in order to survive.
In between fighting or running for your life from the creepy mold monsters that have infested the Baker family’s derelict home, there’s a fair amount of puzzle-solving to be done.
You’ll explore the house and its surrounding grounds with limited ammunition, save points, and health, and the tension won’t let up until you make it all the way through the night.
Furthermore, Resident Evil 7 one of the best VR games you can play right now in 2022.
Moss (Oculus Rift | PS VR | HTC Vive)
Moss is a cute action/puzzle platformer in which you guide Quill, a small mouse, through a fantasy world. Sarffog, an evil fire-breathing snake who has taken over the kingdom, must be saved by her uncle.
Because you control Quill from afar and must lean into better view her surroundings, fight enemies, and jump across gaps, Moss is best played while standing.
The environments in the game are set up as dioramas for the player to peer into, adding to the storybook atmosphere.
You can direct Quill with the direction buttons on the controller, but you’ll also need motion controls to manipulate the environment and assist Quill in getting past obstacles.
You’ll also need some room around you if you want to look for all of the collectibles, which will require you to look everywhere.
Five Nights at Freddy’s: Help Wanted (PSVR | HTC Vive)
We have got a game for you if your idea of a good gaming time is exploring a haunted restaurant with killer animatronic robots on the loose.
Five Nights at Freddy’s has finally made the leap to virtual reality, allowing you to experience jump scares from the most intimate angle possible.
You can play fifty mini-games in Five Nights at Freddy’s VR: Help Wanted, all of which are based on the other games in the franchise. VR recreations of previous game levels, as well as some new unpleasant surprises, are among them.
Even if you complete all of the games, you’re not finished yet. There are various collectibles to find, as well as the “Blacklight mode” of each level to play, which introduces new scary elements to keep you on your toes.
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes (Oculus Rift | Oculus Go | Gear VR | PS VR | HTC Vive)
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is an asymmetric co-op game at its best. Most people will take this to mean that this is the best VR game to play with your friends because you only need one headset, which is great news for large groups of players who suffer from motion sickness.
This is a game in which one person uses virtual reality to defuse a bomb. This player sees and controls a complex explosive device that includes a variety of buttons and wires.
Those who aren’t using VR should consult an instruction manual on their phones or a computer screen to figure out how to defuse the situation. It’s critical to communicate as precisely as possible, lest a bad move or a time-out set off the bomb.
Minecraft VR/Minecraft: Gear VR Edition (Oculus Rift | Windows Mixed Reality | Gear VR)
Minecraft’s VR transition has been a little bumpier than expected, but we do now have a VR version for Gear VR headsets as well as a VR mode in the Windows 10 version of the game.
They drop you right into the middle of the Minecraft world, where you can build to your heart’s content or go adventuring for resources the hard way.
Gear VR can be a good alternative to traditional VR setups for owners of powerful Android smartphones.
However, because your phone will be strapped into the Gear VR headset during use, you’ll need an external controller. However, if you want to get the most out of the PC version, you’ll need a proper Oculus or Microsoft headset.
Catan VR (Oculus Rift | Oculus Go | Samsung Gear VR | HTC Vive | Microsoft Mixed Reality | PSVR)
Catan VR takes the real-world experience of playing the Settlers of the Catan tabletop board game and lovingly adapts it for the virtual reality space.
You’ll sit at a table with up to three other online players and use motion controllers to select and place your pieces in an otherwise traditional game of Catan, where you’ll build settlements, gain, and trade resources on a randomized board.
The VR version’s appeal is that you can see and gesture at your opponents or teammates as if you were in the same room, even if you’re playing online.
Catan VR is one of the best games for Oculus Go VR, the all-in-one VR solution that costs under $200 and doesn’t require a smartphone, game console, or powerful PC. You can also play against other VR systems, not just Oculus players, thanks to cross-play.
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