The age of consumer grade video game console-powered virtual reality is finally here with the PlayStation VR (PSVR). Sony’s headset isn’t as powerful as the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive, or as portable as the Samsung Gear VR or Google Daydream View, and it doesn’t really offer fully-featured roomscale tracking, but it brings VR into the living rooms of over 50 million PlayStation 4 owners at an affordable price with a strong lineup of software.
There are dozens of games already available for the PSVR and it can be overwhelming to look at the PSN Store or gaming store shelves to see so many options. Which games are the best? What if I want a shooter and a music rhythm game, or an adventure title and a horror experience? We’ve compiled our definitive list of the 9 best PSVR games that you can play right now to alleviate those concerns.
There’s something for everyone on this list — guaranteed! The Playroom VR, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare’s Jack Assault, and other free experiences are not included. You should be downloading those regardless.
The following games are listed in no particular order and several awesome titles were left off that we wanted to include. Make sure you check the footnotes at the bottom of the article for past entries on this list that were retired to make room for newer games. The PSVR has plenty of great games already, these are just what we deemed as the very best so far.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR (Review: 9/10)
For a game that wasn’t originally designed for VR at all and has been ported first to the least powerful of the big three VR platforms in the PSVR, Skyrim VR is nothing short of impressive. This really is the Skyrim that you know and love, but now you can enjoy it like never before with the immersive presence of a VR headset. With a large variety of control schemes to choose from and hundreds of hours of content, this is a game that all RPG fans should play as long as you can look past the wonky controls, downgraded visuals, and frustrating UI.
There is just something special about the sensation of walking down the dirt road to Riverwood in VR for the first time, or staring down the throat of a fire-breathing dragon, or even gazing out upon Tamriel from the top of the Throat of the World. Whether you’re a Skyrim-veteran or one of the lucky few that get to see this world for the first time, Skyrim VR is enrapturing.
And if you don’t own a PSVR yet, luckily there’s a new Skyrim VR bundle out there with your name on it.
Firewall Zero Hour [Review: 9/10]
From our review:
“Firewall Zero Hour defies the odds by delivering a multiplayer-focused VR shooter that actually lives up to its potential. If you don’t have a PS Aim controller yet, then you should buy one for this game even though it technically supports DualShock 4 as well. If you don’t have a PSVR headset yet, then you should buy one for this game. With a few improvements and additions, First Contact could turn what is already a must-have PSVR game into a genre-defining one.”
If you have a PSVR and want to play a multiplayer game, then this is the one to get. You should also go buy a PS Aim controller to go with it.
The Persistence [Review: 8/10]
From our review:
The Persistence offers something fresh and engaging by mixing different genres that we don’t often see melded together so well. On a moment-to-moment basis the horrors lurking around every corner keep you on your toes and the give-and-take aspect of its roguelike nature ensures that no two runs are ever quite the same. The lack of Move or PS Aim controller support is a bummer, but it still plays wonderfully just on the standard DualShock 4. This is a dark, challenging stealth shooter that PSVR fans can keep coming back to for quite a while.
Beat Saber [Review: 8.5/10]
What else can be said about this game that hasn’t been said already? It’s amazing. If you for some reason don’t know about this game, it goes like this: you’ve got a red and blue lightsaber, one in each hand, and you’re tasked with slicing blocks that come cascading towards you to the rhythm of the music. It’s like DDR with lightsabers, basically.
Beat Saber is easily one of the most addictive VR games to date and it’s dead simple to pick up and play by anyone regardless of VR experience. And in the PSVR version you get exclusive access to music before anyone else.
Astro Bot: Rescue Mission [Review: 8.5/10]
From our review:
Astro Bot is not here to reinvent the wheel or claim the throne as VR’s killer app; there are enough games trying to do that already. Instead, it fuzes the thrill of seeing a virtual world come to life with the dependably engaging gameplay of one of gaming’s most beloved genres and explores what that can mean with fascinating results. It’s a refreshing reminder of just how astonishing VR can be when there’s nothing in your way, and it’s an absolutely essential experience for any PSVR owner.
Honestly, this is a must-play for anyone with a PSVR headset and if you combine all of the games on this list together, it’s hard to come up with a reason not to get a PSVR.
Superhot VR [Review: 9/10]
Superhot VR is another game we weren’t entirely sure would translate to PSVR so well, but the developers pulled it off almost flawlessly. Despite some tracking troubles, this is still one of the best shooter experiences you can have on your headset right now.
In Superhot, time moves only when you do. This gives the game a wonderful methodical approach, as one bullet will kill you and you have to wipe out all enemies before they get to you. It’s as much a puzzler as it is a shooter; how do you tackle three men with guns when all you have is a knife and a throwing star? The trial and error of working that out is some of the most thrilling gameplay in VR so far.
Resident Evil 7: Biohazard [Review: 9/10]
This is the game that PSVR fans have been waiting on ever since it was announced back at E3 2016. Resident Evil 7: Biohazard does so many things it’s hard to believe Capcom actually pulled it off. First and foremost, it reinvents the stagnating Resident Evil series with a swift kick in the pants moving it from the third-person to the first-person perspective. However, while undergoing that change, this new game also serves as a return to form for the series as its survival horror roots are reintroduced to great effect.
But the most impressive feat by our record is the fact that it delivers a 12+ hour long campaign that’s fully playable in VR with a multitude of comfort options. The atmosphere is haunting, the story is memorable, and the gameplay is rewarding enough to easily make this rank among the top of the pile for the entire horror genre in recent years.
WipEout Omega Collection VR [Review: 9/10]
Synopsis from our review:
“Wipeout VR is an eccentric mix of new and old; a series delivering on the same kind of regular reliability it has for over two decades but from an entirely fresh perspective. Everything you love about Wipeout is here but with a new lease of life, from the violent crunch of combat to the twitch-like reactions needed to navigate the many courses from the seat of your vehicle. It’s both Wipeout as you love it and as you’ve never seen it before, and one of the very best games you can get on PSVR yet.”
Tetris Effect (Review: 8/10]
Synopsis from our review:
“So, yes, this is indeed Tetris… in VR. But, by applying its unmatched strand of spectacular visual and musical flair, Enhance creates something with a powerful, compelling and entirely unexpected hypnotism to it. For some of you, that’ll be enough to lay down the cash without a second thought. For others, I could wax lyrical until my face goes blue and you still wouldn’t reach for your wallet. But for those of you teetering on the fence? Go on, make the jump; this is a really, really great way to celebrate an all-time great.”
11/22/18 Update: Both Moss and Farpoint have been retired on the list with Tetris Effect and WipEout taking their spots.
10/5/18 Update: Bow to Blood has been retired in favor of Astro Bot: Rescue Mission.
12/27/17 Update: Star Trek: Bridge Crew has been retired from this list to make room for Farpoint.
11/22/2017 Update: Bound and EVE: Valkyrie were both retired from the list in favor of The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR and Stifled.
10/4/2017 Update: Until Dawn: Rush of Blood, RIGS: Mechanized Combat League, How We Soar and Battlezone were all retired from the list in favor of Superhot VR, Arizona Sunshine, Sparc and Star Trek: Bridge Crew
3/23/2017 Update: Driveclub VR has been retired from this list with DiRT: Rally taking its place.