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Top 5 VR Games of 2019

Top 5 VR Games of 2019

2019 was a great year for VR. The small segment of the games market grew exponentially, with more and more users appearing across multiple platforms, even the Nintendo Switch! While a number of fantastic VR games that are available today released a couple of years ago, I’ve put together our top five VR games of 2019 to raise awareness of the awesome experiences you may have missed.

Astro Bot Rescue Mission

astro bot rescue mission

Astro Bot Rescue Mission is a PSVR game, and probably one of the best VR games available on the system. Developed by Japan Studio, the game is one of the few to give the player a presence in the world, in addition to needing to control the main character, Captain Astro. Levels can span 360 degrees, requiring players to look and move around in order to complete them, while others have physical barriers that players need to headbutt so that Captain Astro can move forward.

Across the game’s five worlds players will enjoy the tight platforming experience combined with the PSVR. In addition to enemies attacking Captain Astro, players can be attacked by certain enemies in the world, making the platforming genre feel fresh and new. It’s the bosses that are the highlight of this game though, combining several elements and power-ups from throughout the game with the tiny on-screen robot to create some truly enjoyable and memorable moments.

No Man’s Sky Beyond

no mans sly beyond

In August 2019 Hello Games launched their biggest update to No Man’s Sky yet, Beyond. Among a plethora of other features, the update added VR to for players on a number of different platforms. Everyone should understand the game’s premise by now, a space exploration game within a procedurally generated universe. Players are free to follow the story and missions, or just fly off and create a home for themselves on an alien world.

VR is an eye-opener for No Man’s Sky, and it’s undeniably the best way to play it. VR makes you feel closer to the action, whether you’re mining for resources, bartering on a space station, or creating something spectacular with friends thanks to the addition of multiplayer. Flying your ship is where VR transforms the game into something else entirely, putting you into a flight simulator that you could spend hours in if you didn’t need to eat and build Rocket League on a planet far, far away.

Borderlands 2 VR

borderlands 2 vr2

The Borderlands games are some of the best shooters available. The tight gunplay, combined with fun multiplayer and the ultimate loot system, make them great for gaming sessions of any length. Borderlands 2 VR takes that shooter experience to the next level.

The entire Borderlands 2 story, probably the best in the series, is here. Nothing has been cut for the sake of VR, and that’s what makes this game so great. You can earn all of the wacky guns that you can in the non-VR version, and they’re just as fun to use. Shaky hands can sometimes cost you a sniper shot, but that’s nothing compared to the feeling of being inside a Borderlands game, a hectic shooter that makes you feel like a real life action hero.

VR also brings the zany characters to life like never before, making the story even more engrossing and fun to follow. With all of the additional content available for Borderlands 2, including some DLC that launched in 2019 to prep players for Borderlands 3, this is one of the most expansive VR games you’ll play.

Ghost Giant

ghost giant

While Ghost Giant isn’t a very challenging VR game, it’s definitely one of the most-charming of 2019. Players take on the role of a giant ghost, hence the game’s name. The story plays out in front of you, and it’s bursting with heartwarming moments and incredibly well-written characters. The only caveat is that the controls can be a bit difficult, making for a bit of a frustrating experience at times.

The core gameplay requires you to interact with the scenery of each level, with what look like hand-crafted paper structures that make up the buildings and trees. Interacting with the roof of a house can lead you to a secret room within the attic, or a note on a table in a closet. While these are puzzles in the loosest sense of the word, they’re really rewarding when just the right discovery is made to advance the story.

It’s the story that you should play Ghost Giant for. A lot of love has gone into creating these characters and the stories that unfold right before your eyes. It might only be four or five hours long, but they’ll be four or five hours you won’t forget quickly.

Blood & Truth

blood and truth

Blood & Truth was one of the crowning jewels of VR games in 2019. The game is made up of 19 shooter missions, all wrapped up in what feels like a heist movie. The overwhelming feeling that the game leaves you with is ‘cool’. Everything about the layout of the missions and the gameplay comes together really well to provide that gangster shooter experience that everyone wishes they could have after watching a good gangster film.

In Blood & Truth you’ll find a great cast of characters, a small selection of great weapons, and superb shooting. Some levels have multiple paths, and there are a few great sections with pillars and walls to hide behind and peek out from as you mow down the group of enemies in front of you.

The game isn’t all shooting though, with a few levels that see you do crazy things like climb up the side of buildings, taking enemies down from open windows as you go. This really was a highlight for VR gaming in 2019, and I can see it continuing to be one until a game outdoes it in 2020.

Honorable mentions

While these VR games didn’t come out in 2019, they were incredibly popular throughout the whole year, so I thought they were worth mentioning.

Superhot VR

superhot vr

Superhot is a fantastic game that combines fast-paced action with strategic planning. Time stands still while you’re not moving, but as soon as you do, so does everything else in the level. Unfortunately each level is filled with bright orange enemies wielding guns and bats who want to kill you. You need to kill each enemy before they kill you by picking up guns and melee weapons around each level, or taking the ones your dead foes drop.

Bringing Superhot to VR was a genius move, making you feel like you’re in the middle of the action. The stakes are higher because each bullet and bat provokes a visceral response that sees you flinch as though you’re truly at risk from serious bodily harm. This game really is one of the finest VR experiences out there.

Beat Saber

beat saber

Beat Saber also released in 2018, but it remained an essential VR game throughout 2019. In the game the player’s hands become red and blue sabers, which must be used to slice through blocks of corresponding colour in time with a set of incredible tracks that make up Beat Saber’s levels.

At its core this is a rhythm game, bringing the precision button pressing of the Guitar Hero and Rock Band franchises to VR with a brilliant twist. While the base game only has a limited number of tracks, on PC an infinite number of them can be added. There are even custom modded levels that only the most skilled players can beat with stunts like joining their controllers together at the base.

Jamie Sharp

Jamie Sharp


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