With just under 20 new Vive games on Steam this week, it’s the quietest week we’ve had in quite some time. Which is a relief. Luckily, that doesn’t necessarily translate to a bad week, as there are still some solid new games worth trying, even if there aren’t any big marquee titles.
If you missed last week, you can see those new releases here. And don’t forget that UploadVR has a Steam 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.
We also have a top list of the absolute best HTC Vive games — which is updated every few months with the latest and greatest options.
Kubz VR, from bibimbapstudio
It’s Tetris in VR, with roomscale. That sounds asinine at first, but it’s actually pretty clever. Instead of blocks neatly falling into a grid on your screen, they’ll pile up on the floor and table around you, creating a bit of a panic as you try and stack them up correctly.
Recommendation: If you like puzzle games — or Tetris — then it’s worth checking out.
Star Chart, from bibimbapstudio
Price: $9.99 (Currently Discounted)
This one has been around for a while on the Gear VR, but not it’s making its way over to Steam with Vive support. Gaze at the stars in this solar system-exploration experience in an accurate real-time simulation.
Recommendation: Not bad, but maybe just go with Titans of Space 2 instead.
Glider Island, from Joey Sipos
A first-person glider game in which you soar about a picturesque island, performing tricks to score points and flying through hoops. Sort of like Pilot Wings VR. Two islands feature now with a third on the way. Sadly, it’s not much to look at.
Recommendation: We’d pass.
Spellbound, from Wobbly Duck Studios
Wobbly Duck (great name) offers some magical fun with the Early Access release of Spellbound, a quirky sorcery game. Defend yourself from zombies by conjuring fireballs and other spells. Supports a number of control types to suit your need.
Recommendation: For the Harry Potter fan in you.
King of Spin VR, from Wicked Witch
When you think of sports you really, really can’t wait to play in VR, cricket is probably not one of them. Well, at least not for the majority of our audience (who happen to reside in the USA). That’s essentially what this is, although it’s a poor adaptation.
Recommendation: Niche sports game with no online multiplayer and a large price tag. Pass.
GE Neuro, from Kite & Lightning
Kite & Lightning’s fascinating, fantastical journey through the human mind has been revamped for current VR headsets and released for free. It’s a brief but brilliant trip packed with vibrant sights and sounds. Look for the studio’s Senza Peso to hit there soon too.
Recommendation: A fast, fun and free experience. Grab it.
Music Inside, from Reality Reflection
If you married the ideas behind games like Audioshield and Rock Band into a single experience, then Music Inside is pretty close to the result. It can funnel in music from Soundcloud, or use your own MP3s, to create rhythm-based tracks for you to tackle on a virtual drum kit in VR.
Recommendation: Don’t let the price scare you: if you like music-based rhythm games, give this one a go.
Temple of the Apsara, from Attraction Studios
What a nice surprise this one is. Obduction’s Rift release was delayed with no clear sign of a definitive Vive version and Thunderbird isn’t out yet, so this might be your best bet for a Myst-like taste of the adventure genre in VR.
Recommendation: Great dollar-per-hour value here. It’s only about an hour long, but it’s also gorgeous and only $2.
Duck Force, from Andreas Aust
This is a weird one. You’ll fly around, dodging enemies, and attacking them on a journey through the desert, sort of. But it all just reeks of unpolished and poorly made, despite the high quality art work.
Recommendation: Just…yeah. Stay away from this one.
CloudBound, from Silicon Storm
It was only a matter of time before someone caught on to the magic that is Windlands and created their own version of the grappling mechanic. Swing, climb, and fling through levels in an intense VR platformer.
Recommendation: If you like Windlands, check it out.
Bullets and More VR, from Koenigz
Price: $14.99 (Currently Discounted)
This gun game is in Early Access, so tread with caution and understand it’s far from finished, but there is a lot of potential here. Some target practice modes, wave modes, and there is even a level editor in the game already. This could really turn into something special over time.
Recommendation: If you wish Hotdogs, Horsehoes, and Hand Grenades had more to do, then check this out.
Cockroach VR, from Tantanmen
Finally, a game that lets you shoot giant cockroaches with pistols in VR. The community has been clamoring for this game ever since the dawn of modern VR technology and it’s finally arrived.
Recommendation: Meh. It’s funny, at least, but it won’t last you long. Only $2, though.
Final Fleet, from Team2Bit
Take the idea behind Xortex from The Lab, and open it up to a bigger playspace with more content. That’s the general premise behind Final Fleet and it works pretty well. The visuals are nice and it iterates well on the wave shooter concept.
Recommendation: A bit pricey for what you get, but not a bad game.
Gnomes and Goblins, from WeVR and Jon Favreau
Jon Favreau is one of the biggest Hollywood names to get involved in VR so far. There have been a litany of performance and compatibility issues with his debut ever since it released on Steam, but for those that have gotten it running love it. We have two in-depth interviews about the experience you can check out.
Recommendation: Download this immediately.
RollerGirls From Beyond, from Stonepunk Studios
Price: $14.99 (Rift)
Have we have a side-scrolling beat ’em up in VR yet? If not then RollerGirls From Beyond has the honor of being the very first. This looks absolutely bonkers and is designed to provide players with a challenge, something that’s been lacking in VR thus far. Moving out of Early Access this week.
Recommendation: The art style is certainly bright and colorful, but I’m not entirely sure why this exists in VR.
Raptor Valley, from Andrew Stout
Price: $8.99 (Currently discounted)
First-person shooting dinosaur madness. Classed as a survival horror game, you have to keep your wits about you in long grass as you’re hunted by vicious beasts that will leap at you as if from nowhere. It could be quite tense, though it’s not the most original VR experience.
Recommendation: Probably the highlight of a rather lackluster week.
Mars Odyssey, from Steel Wool
Price: $8.99 (Currently discounted)
Have you ever wanted to go to Mars? Of course you have. Everyone wants to visit other planets. Now, thanks to Mars Odyssey, you can visit the Red Planet and bask in its interplanetary beauty.
Recommendation: Production value alone makes this one worth the price. Here’s more info.
69 Ways to Kill a Zombie, from Wadup Games
This might be one of the very first true commercially available games that utilizes hands-movement as the locomotion system. Instead of teleporting or using the track pad, you move your arms like you’re actually walking. Oh and there are retro zombies to kill too.
Recommendation: The price is a bit high, but it’s worth waiting for a sale to see the locomotion system in action.
Power Link VR, from Himi Games
Price: $4.99 (Currently discounted)
Pick up the little piece of metal and guide it along the wire, without touching, just like you did at the fair. This is far from the first time we’ve seen this game in VR and it probably won’t be the last.
Recommendation: Uninspired, we’d pass.
Block Wave VR, from RLTY CHK
Price: $4.99 (Currently discounted)
I know, I know. It’s crazy. But guess what? We not only began this list with a VR version of Tetris, we’re ending it with one as well. Block Wave VR is a much more sci-fi and synthesized adaptation, so fans of the classic may be interested in checking this out.
Recommendation: If you like Tetris, you should definitely check this out.