35 VR Games We Can’t Wait To Play in 2016

by Will Mason • December 30th, 2015


Honor Code

Narcosis is a psychological survival horror game that takes place at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. You are stranded there after an accident and have few tools to aid you in survival. You will have to fend off sea creatures, but most of all your own mind as it begins to betray you in the depths. Unlike many horror games, Narcosis doesn’t rely on jump scares to drive the horror – rather, it uses atmosphere to create a tense and foreboding feeling for the player.

Expected Release: March 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive


Mindfield Games

In virtual reality, interactivity is incredibly important, and that is one of the things that makes Pollen such an interesting title. The team at Mindfield has worked tirelessly to make just about every single object in the game interactive. See a basketball in the corner? Toss it in the hoop across the room. See a can on the ground? You can pick it up and examine it. See the cupboard over there? Well, you get the idea. Pollen’s plot revolves around a mysterious entity that has left your base on Jupiter’s moon Titan empty of life except, for whatever reason, your own. You are tasked with exploring your surroundings and piecing together the mystery as it is laid out in front of you. Pollen is representative of a genre being given a new life in VR, and is a world we cannot way to explore further.

Expected Release: Q1 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift (Oculus Touch support confirmed), HTC Vive, PlayStation VR

Project Cars 2

Slightly Mad Studios & Bandai


Project Cars debuted just this year with a lot of fanfare, and for good reason. The game was developed by a number of veterans from some of the best driving games in the world, and has graphics that simply blow the rest out of the water. Seriously, just look. When it released the game had Oculus support but it wasn’t quite optimal. Project Cars 2 may be looking to change that as the company has hinted at greater emphasis on virtual reality. Combined with a decent wheel and pedal controller, you are instantly transported into a world that you may find is difficult to discern from the real one. Racing games are a natural fit for VR, and this title is among the best coming from the genre.

Expected Release: Late 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR

Rez Infinite

Q-Entertainment & SEGA

When I took off the headset after my first playthrough of Rez Infinite at the PlayStation Experience earlier this year the guy demoing it to me told me “you did really well,” and my honest response back was “I did?”

Truth be told I am not sure what the hell I did or experienced in Rez Infinite but I know one thing, I couldn’t stop thinking about it afterward. It seriously was like ingesting a Pan Galactic Gargle Blaster, complete with the slice of lemon and brick. I wasn’t sure what was up or down but I knew I was having a good time. By far the trippiest title on this list, Rez is definitely one to try.

Expected Release: “Sometime next year”

Supported Headsets: PlayStation VR

Rigs: Mechanized Combat League

Guerrilla Games Cambridge 

PlayStation has been pushing RIGs fairly hard as a potential e-Sport title since it was launched, which is interesting because it may not be the most accessibly comfortable game on the list. Despite that, those with strong constitutions will find a game that is both fast-paced and fun, with an interesting take on the FPS competitive multiplayer genre. In it you pick from three separate classes, and pit your team against the other in a game that mixes sport and shooting in a fantastic cocktail. The goal is to shoot enough enemies that your character gets ‘charged,’ at which point you race for the goal hoop at the center of the map to score points for your team. It is a ton of fun, if you can stomach it.

Read More: RIGs the “competitive VR FPS” will test your skills… and potentially your stomach

Expected Release: Q2 2016

Supported Headsets: PlayStation VR

Robinson: The Journey


Beginning its life as a series of tech demosRobinson: The Journey is shaping up to be one of the most gorgeous titles in VR. While there is not a ton that is known right now about the plot or characters other than “players will become pioneers by interacting with the rich ecosystem around them and unearthing incredible secrets at every turn.” All we know is there are dinosaurs and a Wheatly clone, and that is more than enough to get us super excited.

Read More: Back to Dinosaur Island (Again) Hands-on with Crytek’s Gorgeous New Demo

Expected Release: TBA 2016

Supported Headsets: PlayStation VR

Rock Band VR

Harmonix & Oculus Studios

Oculus teased the announcement of this game prior to the Game Awards, and when it dropped it initially left some people with mixed feelings. But now that the dust has settled I think we can all agree how awesome it might be to live out your rock god fantasies in VR.

Read More: Rock Band VR On Rift Will Let You Live Your Rock God Fantasies

Expected Release: Sometime in 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift (Oculus Touch support confirmed – works with peripheral controller)

Star Citizen

Cloud Imperium Games

Star Citizen is the single biggest crowdfunding success of all time, having raised over $100 million on Kickstarter since it debuted in 2014. The game will look to create a game at multiple scales, with battles ranging from EVE: Online scale strategy, to fighter dogfighting, to landing on the various capital ships and planets and going full FPS. It is essentially three full space games wrapped into one beautiful package. It isn’t clear if VR support will come at launch but it is something the developers have promised.

Expected Release: TBA 2016 (Single Player likely to arrive in 2016, full title may be delayed to 2017)

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive

Surgeon Simulator ER

Bossa Studios

Who doesn’t like pounding the guts out of an alien with a pickaxe and hammer? The wildly popular Surgeon Simulator game from Bossa Studios is coming to VR in 2016 with a new version titled Surgeon Simulator: ER (Experience Reality). In it you will be able to do just about anything but perform an accurate surgery (ok – you can, but if you do you probably aren’t any fun at parties) smacking your patient in the face with his own hands, and using wild tools like a lightsaber laser to perform “surgery.” It’s mayhem fun at its best.

Expected Release: Q1 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR


Iris VR

Technolust is another Kickstarted success story. Set in a world reminiscent of cyberpunk sci-fi films like Blade Runner (of which it shares a very similar visual aesthetic) and RobocopTechnolust is a game driven by exploration – like a number of other titles on this list. You get to choose how you play the game. Want to just go hang out and play games in the arcade? You can. Or you can choose to  “join the resistance and help bring down the oppressive corporations.” The whole game is very purposefully freeform because it’s goal is to allow “the player to feel as if they are actually part of the game world.” When you toss in the gorgeously scanned and lifelike human avatars, it becomes a game that we can easily see ourselves getting lost in this year.

Expected Release: Q1 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift

The Vanishing of Ethan Carter VR

For a brief, beautiful and in the end, nauseating, moment The Vanishing of Ethan Carter Redux came to VR – only to be promptly pulled a couple days later citing bugs and other issues. As we know, ports are not easy for VR but the developer has confirmed that there will be a VR version of the title released sometime in the future – either as a separate game or DLC.

Expected Release: TBA 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive



So adding the VOID is kind of cheating because it is not a game but rather an entire Virtual Entertainment Center, but it is nonetheless the single most immersive experience in VR today. The company is looking to open its pilot center late this year in Salt Lake City, Utah. The center will utilize The VOID’s own hardware setup – called Rapture – as well as 4D effects and redirected walking around a world perfectly mapped to the real one. The VOID is far more than just a flashy YouTube video – it is the absolute pinnacle of VR today.

Read More: Moments of True Presence: We Step Into The Void

Expected Release: Q3 2016

Supported Headsets: Rapture

VR Sports Challenge

Sanzaru & Oculus Studios

A collection of games based on the four major (American) sports, Football, Baseball, Basketball, and Hockey VR Sports Challenge is a game that seems poised to be the ‘Wii Sports’ of VR – a high water mark indeed given that it is the second best-selling game of all time. It is highly unlikely that VR Sports Challenge will achieve those kind of crazy sales, given that VR likely won’t have the number to support 82 million copies at first – but it may be an important cog in VR reaching a broader audience. Time will tell, but in the meantime the football mode looks like a lot of fun.

Read More: Sanzaru’s ‘VR Sports Challenge’ could be the Wii Sports of VR

Expected Release: Q1 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift (Oculus Touch Support Confirmed)

World War Toons

Reload Studios

A lot of people ask what will the Call of Duty of VR be like. Well, a team of Call of Duty vets teamed up with a prolific Disney artist to find out. Designed for VR from minute one, World War Toons is an artful demonstration of fitting a square peg in a round hole. The gameplay and design are all specifically tailored to mitigate the problems caused by VR in the genre, and they do so in a way that adds to the game itself. We have watched World War Toons grow up from nearly the beginning and it has come a long way. With a Looney Toons sensibility and a no blood approach to World War Two combat, World War Toons is a FPS that is fun for all ages.

Read More: Hands on with Reload Studios’ new VR FPS, World War Toons

Expected Release: TBA 2016

Supported Headsets: Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR



Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

What's your reaction?