New HTC Vive Releases for the Week of 06/26/16

by David Jagneaux • July 1st, 2016

I’m not going to lie to you: there aren’t any huge, earth-shattering releases this week. No offense to the indies you’re about to read about, some of them are pretty special, but there’s nothing headset-selling here. What we do have, however, is a nice assortment of cheap, or free, things to download and enjoy on your fancy piece of face plastic.

If you missed last week, you can see those new releases here. And don’t forget that UploadVR now has its own SteamVR community group, complete with a curated list of recommendations so that you don’t have to waste any money finding out what’s good in the world of VR. Let’s get to it.

New Retro Arcade Neon Demo, from Digital Cybercherries

Release Date: 06/27/16 Price: Free 

While the full game still isn’t out yet, you can get a taste of the revamped New Retro Arcade Neon right now on Steam. It’s essentially the same thing the previous free versions that you could have tried on the DK2 in the past, but optimized with Vive support now. The next update will totally overhaul the entire experience.

Recommendation: It’s free and dripping with nostalgia. Check this one out.

Orc Hunter VR Demo, from Orc Hunter Development Team

Release Date: 06/28/16 Price: Free 

If you’re as tired of endless wave survival games in VR as I am, then you’re in luck. Let me present to you another endless wave survival game. Luckily, this time at least tasks you with something other than killing zombies. Instead, in Orc Hunter VR, you’ll spend time chopping down orcs with insanely satisfying melee combat.

Recommendation: It’s a free demo, but has some satisfying mechanics. Could turn into something really fun. 

Rec Room, from Against Gravity

Release Date: 06/28/16 Price: Free 

I’ve got no qualms with declaring Rec Room as the stand out release for this week’s Vive content. If you take the concept behind social hubs like AltspaceVR and combine that with your high school gym period, you have the idea here. You can hang out, chat, interact with head-tracking and hand-tracking, and even play games like Disc Golf, Paddle Ball, Dodgeball, and more to come.

Recommendation: Once again, this is free and insanely fun. If you have a Vive, you should be in Rec Room.

FTC Workshop Tool, from Alpha Wave Entertainment

Release Date: 06/28/16 Price: Free 

This isn’t so much a new game as it is a modding platform. If you already have Felt Tip Circus (which you really should – it’s polished and fun) then you can use the FTC Workshop Tool to start making content for the game itself.

Recommendation: The tool is a free download and worth checking out if you’re curious about making original content.

VR: Vacate the Room, from Heiko Ihde

Release Date: 06/29/16 Price: $3.99 (Currently 15% Off)

Escape the room style games have been staples of VR ever since the DK1. You’ll find them on all different devices, but adding tracked motion controllers into the mix from the Vive makes them all the more interesting. VR: Vacate the Room borrows some of the ideas behind the excellent A Chair in a Room: Greenwater and offers some short, digestible puzzles at a cheap price.

Recommendation: It’s a free demo, but has some satisfying mechanics. Could turn into something really fun. 

VirZOOM Arcade, from VirZOOM

Release Date: 06/28/16 Price: Free (Bike Controller Setup costs ~$400)

This isn’t really a game release as it is a product or platform release, since the game is useless unless you also buy the VirZOOM bike controller. But if you do, the VirZOOM Arcade suite of experiences comes free of charge. You can fly a pegasus, be a horseback cowboy, drive a racecar, fly a helicopter, and pilot a tank.

Recommendation: This is quite pricey and doesn’t look super sturdy. The software is also super limited. If you really want to exercise in VR, it could be a decent investment, but may not have much upside. 

Klepto, from Meerkat Gaming

Release Date: 06/30/16 Price: $12.99

When you think of all the things you want to do with VR, burglary probably doesn’t rate very highly. But that isn’t stopping Meerkat Gaming integrating VR support into its new Early Access release, Klepto. Featuring third-person gameplay, you’ll break into houses and swipe goods to gain points. Multiplayer support allows you to steal with friends, too.

Recommendation: Klepto is a strange one, and we’d recommend maybe letting it find its feet on Early Access before diving in.

thrill of the fight

The Thrill of the Fight, from Ian Fitz

Release Date: 07/01/16 Price: $9.99 (Currently 20% Off)

Finally, a VR boxing game. It’s only a matter of time before indie developers successfully recreate every experience from the Wii Sports, Wii Sports Resort, and Wii Play line of games on the Nintendo Wii. Now that we have a boxing concept in The Thrill of the Fight, Ian Fitz needs to add multiplayer, some more modes, and keep polishing this into an even more complete experience.

Recommendation: You’ll get a decent work out and have some fun pummeling an NPC that has done nothing to deserve the abuse. Great fun!

Dimensional, from Brett Jackson

Release Date: 07/01/16 Price: $4.99

First-person puzzle games feel right at home on the Rift when they take advantage of the positional tracking. What’s really unique about Dimensional, a crowd-funded game, is that it actually provides a pseudo-roomscale experience on the Rift without any extra camera or sensors.  The movement system is reminiscent of Cloudhead’s “Blink” and room rotating mechanic. You can read more in the feature we ran a few months ago.

Recommendation: There are 5 solid levels and some really clever ideas. It’s Early Access so it’ll only grow as time goes on. Worth a download. 

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