Facebook’s standalone VR headset, the Oculus Quest, shook up the industry when it debuted in May of 2019, offering a truly wireless VR headset that eliminates the need for a PC or games console entirely. Playing VR games wire-free is a liberating experience and the fact that you can just throw the Oculus Quest in a bag and take it with you anywhere is a big plus. It’s little wonder then that the Oculus Quest accounted for nearly half of all VR headsets sold in 2019, with Facebook stating several times that the headset is selling as fast as they can make it (it’s currently on backorder everywhere).
The strong sales have led to a deluge of developer support resulting in a platform with a tightly curated list of fantastic VR experiences. The choices on offer can be overwhelming so, with this in mind, we’ve shortlisted 17 Oculus Quest games that you need to own to get the most out of your new headset and provide you with the most fun possible across a range of different genres.
Beat Saber is the biggest selling VR title in history and for good reason – it’s easy enough for anyone to pick-up and play but has the depth and challenge to keep you coming back for more round after round.
VR’s most popular title is also best experienced on the Quest as you can slice passing red and blue blocks and dodge advancing walls in time to music without having to worry about tripping over wires. It’s hard to go back to playing Beat Saber on any other VR headset after you experience it wire-free on Quest. Exclusive to Quest is a 360 mode where blocks can come from all around the player instead of just straight ahead, ratcheting up the intensity that much more.
The Oculus Quest mightn’t have Astro Bot, which is exclusive to PSVR, but it does have another puzzle-platformer gem in Moss. Developed by former Halo developers from Bungie, this adorable third-person platformer builds a powerful bond between player and protagonist as you guide a well animated mouse overflowing with personality on a quest to save her uncle after their kingdom was overthrown by a hot-headed snake.
Like Astro Bot, Moss employs a clever use of VR that helps you manipulate the environment as you guide Quill around levels, tackle environmental puzzles and engage in combat with enemies along the way.
Vader Immortal trilogy
Vader Immortal isn’t a particularly lengthy experience with each episode lasting less than an hour and admittedly the last two episodes never quite manage to eclipse the first. However, each episode is fairly priced and boasts top notch production values that put you centre stage in your very own Star Wars adventure which is made all the more convincing with excellent voice acting. After you’re done with the single player campaign, the Lightsaber Dojo mode provides some replayability as you smash droids with your lightsaber and compete on leaderboards for high scores. This is a game that anyone can enjoy regardless of whether you’re a Star Wars fan or not.
Another title that shines the brightest on Quest, Dance Central takes full advantage of roomscale so you can transform your living room into a dance floor and pull off moves unencumbered. Although the Quest’s tracking cameras can on occasion lose tracking of certain moves, the game nails the core mechanics and overall is a blast to play as you dance to the rhythm across the game’s 32 songs. Dance Central can also provide a great workout with a recent update adding an in-game fitness tracker so you can see how many calories you’re burning while you dance the night away.
Job Simulator has long been a VR favourite with its hilarious take on a world where robots have replaced all human jobs. Stepping into Job Simulator, players can relive the glory days of work by simulating the ins and outs of being a gourmet chef, an office worker, a convenience store clerk and a mechanic, each seasoned with a uniquely sardonic twist. Job Simulator was one of the earliest games to sell users on VR and it still stands as one of the best implementations of VR available on the platform.
Vacation Simulator builds on all the elements that made 2016’s Job Simulator so memorable, while adding more structure and story making for a more cohesive overall package. The robots this time around are trying to recreate the lost art of vacationing where you’re free to roam across a number of vacation spots and complete various minigames in whichever order you prefer.
Vacation Simulator also enhances the hands-on play in interesting new ways that are guaranteed to put a smile on your face, especially if you’re a newcomer to VR.
Pistol Whip is a sublime rhythm-based VR shooter inspired by the likes of John Wick that will have you repeatedly dodging bullets and dispatching hypercolour hitmen as you stream down corridors against a thumping soundtrack. Pistol Whip blends some of VR gaming’s best qualities – tracked hands, body presence, and quick reactions – wrapped up in a delectably addictive package that will have you feeling like a Gun-fu master. The gunplay is satisfying, the neon-lit visuals are striking, the soundtrack is pulsating and it all comes together in an elegant yet brutal dance that feels fresh. An absolute must play.
Path of the Warrior
The Path of the Warrior is essentially a VR adaptation of old school beat-em-ups in the vain of Streets of Rage or Final Fight – you punch up goons, pick up stuff and beat up bosses. As fun as it is to throw around bad guys from a first person VR perspective, it can start to get a bit stale after a while. But thankfully, the developers recently updated the game with multiplayer so you and a friend can go toe-to-toe with opponents using a lethal variety of fists, barstools, jukeboxes across Oculus headsets which take the fun factor to new heights.
Just be aware that due to Oculus account restrictions, no more than one Oculus device registered to an account can play Path of the Warrior at a given time which is a shame. This means that while cross-buy and cross-play work, somebody who owns both a Rift and a Quest couldn’t, say, let their buddy jump into the unused headset while they go to town together unless they buy another copy of the game as well.
The Exorcist: Legion VR
The Exorcist: Legion VR is a methodical detective terror that is less about cheap jump scares and more about slow-building tension that is expertly paced crescendoing into a harrowing brand of psychological scares. The puzzles in the game are a little lackluster and you’ll do a fair bit of backtracking but the presentation and pacing more than make up for it. Although the game’s five distinct chapters are relatively short, the game will stay with you long after you’ve removed the headset.
Rec Room is a multiplayer playground that offers an excellent mix of activities from sports to co-op quests with Paintball mode in particular being one of the most playable FPS experiences on the Quest. Best of all, it’s completely free, so there’s almost always an active community online and ready to play.
Another classic VR title that plays best on the Oculus Quest, SuperHot drops you into one action movie scene after another where gunfights are bullet ballets as you physically dodge attacks from bad guys with a simple but ingenious twist: time only moves when you do.
The slow-down mechanic gives the game a tactical edge as you quickly scan the environment for props to help you clear out a room. It’s gaming’s best recreation of being in the Matrix complete with controls that give you immediate, satisfying and visceral feedback. The fact that you can now move around, dodge and weave wire-free thanks to the Oculus Quest feels downright liberating. Don’t miss it.
Creed: Rise to Glory
Boxing fans or for anyone after a solid workout, look no further than Creed. While more arcadey than simulation, you’re still going to need to execute on the fundamentals of boxing to progress through the challenging single-player campaign. This includes an emphasis on patience, timed dodging, reading your opponent, searching for openings and scoring a powerful knockout. The story might not live up to the same standard as the films but the core boxing experience is solid and there’s nothing else like it in VR.
Just make sure you have a big enough playspace so you can freely move around the virtual ring and execute jabs while maintaining distance with the opponent.
Space Pirate Trainer
One of the earliest VR titles gets a new lease of life on the Oculus Quest with this physically demanding wave based arcade shooter benefiting immensely from the wireless freedom that the Quest offers. Moving around to dodge enemy fire is essential while standing still all but ensures an early death. Taking down enemies with an assortment of weapons and gadgets feels very satisfying as does deflecting incoming enemy fire with the nifty shield.
While Space Pirate Trainer can get a little repetitive, it’s the perfect title to jump in for a few rounds and challenge yourself to get onto the leaderboards.
Acron: Attack of the Squirrels
Acron is a multiplayer only title that is best played with a few friends and family over, all playing locally as opposed to remotely online. The premise of Acron is simple – the VR player becomes a tree that must throw seeds and other weapons at squirrels to stop them from stealing the golden acorns. The squirrels are non-VR players that join in via free mobile app and up to eight can team up at once, offering some highly entertaining gameplay.
Red Matter is a first-person adventure puzzle game set during a dystopian sci-fi cold war that relies heavily on atmosphere and story to propel the game forward. As such the game leans heavily on its visuals to help create an environment that feels more real and haunting at the same time. The result is easily the most visually impressive title on the Quest backed up by a well written story, highly effective soundtrack and voice work.
Interacting with the game’s virtual objects feels utterly convincing while the puzzles in the game present just the right amount of challenge without bordering on frustration. In short, Red Matter pulls of a sense of immersion few other VR titles can match to the point that you’ll forget you’re in VR at all.
A Fisherman’s Tale
A mind-bending VR puzzle adventure game unlike anything you’ll see elsewhere, A Fisherman’s Tale sees you controlling the hands and movement of a puppet that’s found itself in a world-within-a-world puzzle. The scale-based puzzles aren’t excessively difficult to solve but they are a lot of fun to figure out which center around a miniature model of the lighthouse the game’s set in. Throw in a poignant story and you have a fantastic VR title for just about anyone.
Robo Recall is an adrenaline pumping and graphically impressive VR first-person shooter packed with plenty of personality and funny one-liners. The aim of the game is to rack up high scores by dispatching robot enemies in a variety of ways. The head tracking is put to good use with waves of robots coming through from all angles including airborne death bots. But Robot Recall’s use of hand tracking is what propels the game to the next level. Robot enemies can be picked up and thrown in the air (and juggled in the air with gunfire should you be so inclined) or used as shields, incoming fire can be grabbed and hurled back at enemies and robot limbs can be torn off. No matter how silly it gets, you feel like you’re right there.
While its graphical downgrades are noticeable and it does tend to slow down a bit more than the Oculus Rift version, this is still an extremely polished and fun arcade shooter. What’s more it supports cross-buy so if you already own it on Rift you now own it on Quest.
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