It’s a great time to start investing in VR. While virtual reality technology has arguably been a little too unwieldy and expensive to justify a purchase before now, the advent of PlayStation VR2, as well as more affordable headsets like the Meta Quest 2, shows that companies are serious about VR and the leaps forward in immersion that it offers. As such, it probably won’t surprise you to learn that there are a host of excellent VR experiences coming in 2023. Let’s take a look at the 20 best VR games releasing this year.
The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners – Chapter 2: Retribution (PC, Meta Quest 2, PS VR2, March 21st)
If you loved the first Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners game, you’ll definitely want to check this one out as well. It’ll offer more of the same survival-based shooter gameplay that the first game did so well, and it promises to be even more terrifying thanks to a new foe that you’ll have to contend with if you want to succeed. If you’re not all zombied out by The Last of Us and other zombie media, give this one a look.
In the world of The Last Worker, automation is an encroaching force that threatens to render human workers obsolete. You are a single worker who decides to take one last stand against the increasingly ever-present machines, and what follows is a mixture of narrative adventure, stealth game, and work sim. If nothing else, the blend of genres on offer here promises to be incredibly interesting, so we’re excited to get our hands on this one.
Creed: Rise to Glory – Championship Edition (PS VR2, April 4th)
We might be cheating a little with this one, since Creed: Rise to Glory isn’t technically a new VR game. However, it does have a proven track record for providing excellent boxing gameplay and immersive visuals, and the PS VR2 version is promising an even better experience thanks to its higher graphical fidelity and haptic controllers. If you haven’t tried out Adonis Creed’s VR adventure yet, this promises to be the best way to do so.
Amid Evil VR (PC, Meta Quest 2, April 20th)
If you’ve already played Indefatigable and New Blood’s excellent retro shooter Amid Evil, you’ll know that it’s a great callback to classics like Hexen and Quake. Now, the game is being rebuilt from the ground up for VR, giving you a chance to get even more immersed in its colourful landscapes and brutal combat. With additional work from VR studio Elijah Immersive, this one promises to be special.
Firmament (PC, May 18th)
Cyan Worlds has been creating immersive puzzlers for many decades now, and Firmament is its latest project. The studio has been cooking this one for a little while; it’s been delayed a few times, but per a recent Kickstarter backer update, it’s finally scheduled to launch for PC VR devices in May, with a release for PlayStation VR2 and PlayStation consoles also scheduled “at some point down the line”.
Attack on Titan VR: Unbreakable (Meta Quest 2, summer 2023)
If you’ve ever watched the Attack on Titan anime, or read the manga, then you’ll know what kind of terrifying ordeals the main characters go through. Attack on Titan VR: Unbreakable will put you in the pilot’s seat as you soar through the skies and try to take down the titular giant monstrosities. If nothing else, it’s sure to make you thankful we don’t really live in a world full of Titans.
Propagation: Paradise Hotel (PC, Q2 2023)
VR is, of course, fertile ground for the horror genre, and Propagation: Paradise Hotel promises to be a classic VR survival horror experience of the kind for which VR is perfect. You must survive a trip through the titular Paradise Hotel in search of your sister, and to find her, you must sneak past myriad horrors, explore the hotel for answers, and gather as many resources as you can to survive.
X8 (Meta Quest 2, PC, Q2 2023)
If you like hero shooters like Overwatch or Valorant, then you’ll definitely find lots to like in the colourful world of X8, which promises to bring the genre into the world of VR. This is a 5v5 team-based shooter in which a variety of heroes with different skills and specialisations face off against one another in order to outsmart the other team and emerge victorious.
Behemoth (Meta Quest 2, PS VR2, 2023)
We don’t know a huge amount about upcoming Nordic VR game Behemoth yet, other than that it comes to us from the developers of The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners, which gives it a certain pedigree. The developers are promising “weighty VR combat” and “lifelike physics”, which suggests that this is going to be a chunky adventure emphasising melee combat and survival.
Crossfire: Sierra Squad (PS VR2, 2023)
Crossfire: Sierra Squad casts you as the leader of an elite military unit, caught in the “crossfire” (ahem) of a shadowy war that could threaten the future of the world. This military shooter will offer a range of weapons to get to grips with, as well as explosives you can throw back at the enemy and much more. With 60 campaign missions on offer, there will be plenty of gameplay, too.
Ghostbusters: Rise of the Ghost Lord (Meta Quest 2, PS VR2, 2023)
Have you always wanted to inhabit the world of the Ghostbusters? Well, thanks to upcoming VR title Ghostbusters: Rise of the Ghost Lord, now you can. Strap on your proton pack and prepare to continue the legacy of everyone’s favourite blue-collar ghost-hunters as you build your very own ghostbusting operation. Who you gonna call? Well, up to three friends to help you out in co-op, apparently.
If you’ve played Sairento VR, then you’ll know roughly what to expect from the brutal action-combat VR experience Hellsweeper VR. By using a range of weaponry and the very elements themselves, you’ll master various combat arenas either by yourself or alongside your friends in co-op. Plenty of enemy types and different mission objectives should keep you and your buddies on your toes.
Firewall Ultra (PS VR2, 2023)
The original Firewall was a well-liked PlayStation VR game, so it makes sense for Sony to want a sequel using its new swanky headset. That’s exactly what Firewall Ultra promises to be; a followup to the original Firewall Zero Hour, offering tactical first-person shooter action with either PvP or PvE gameplay and various different contractors with diverse special skills to choose from.
Assassin’s Creed VR (Meta Quest 2, 2023)
This long-awaited Assassin’s Creed VR project, which leaks suggest may be called Assassin’s Creed Nexus, is, according to recent reports, fairly close to being finished. Unfortunately, we don’t know a lot about the project right now; we know that famous faces from the Assassin’s Creed series will supposedly appear in it, but otherwise, we’re in the dark, so let’s hope we get more info soon.
Untitled Aliens project (TBA, 2023)
Information is thin on the ground concerning Servios’ upcoming Aliens project. We do know that it will be an “intense single-player action-horror game” set within the Alien universe, so don’t expect Alien: Isolation-style slower pacing and survival horror. It’ll also be a completely original story, so it won’t simply be an adaptation of one of the Alien movies.
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas (Meta Quest 2, 2023)
Honestly, we’re just speculating that San Andreas VR will arrive this year. We can but hope; it was revealed for Meta’s Quest 2 headset at the tail end of 2021, but perhaps the overwhelmingly negative response to Rockstar’s GTA Trilogy remasters set the timeline back on the VR version’s release a little. We hope not, because getting to explore San Andreas in VR is a childhood dream come true.
Resident Evil 4 (PS VR2, 2023)
All we know about the VR version of Resident Evil 4 (the upcoming 2023 remake, that is, not the original) is that it exists. Capcom has confirmed that it’s definitely working on a VR gameplay mode for Resident Evil 4, and like Resident Evil Village, it will be available exclusively via PlayStation VR2. If it’s anywhere near as good as the Meta Quest 2 version of the original Resident Evil 4, it’ll be special indeed.
VR Giants (PC, 2023)
Sadly, all we know about VR Giants is that it’s “coming soon”, according to its Steam listing. However, that doesn’t make us any less excited for this adorable-looking puzzle-platformer, which sees two players teaming up asynchronously to solve a series of challenges. One player is using a VR headset, while the other controls a character with a controller.
Pirates VR: Jolly Roger (PC, 2023)
Have you ever dreamed of being an old-timey pirate? Of course you have. Well, thanks to Pirates VR, that dream is about to come true (we hope, anyway). The game promises a true Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag or Pirates of the Caribbean-style swashbuckling adventure, complete with island exploration, combat, and, of course, hunting for treasure along your way.
Low-Fi (PC, 2023)
The developers of Low-Fi describe it as “more akin to a holodeck program than a traditional game”. The aim, it seems, is to create an immersive cyberpunk environment in which to lose yourself; rather than taking on a linear series of challenges, you’ll simply be exploring the game’s world and choosing how you interact with it. From what we’ve seen, it’ll be a gorgeous world indeed to explore.