This section of the site is dedicated to a rather large category within the VR world: VR video games.
For many people video games are the main reason to own a VR system, but to a newcomer the sheer volume of choices in hardware and titles can be overwhelming. So we’re going to try and make sense of VR video games together and try to find all the best experiences and deals VR gaming has to offer.
On a Whole New Level
Video game are a huge industry. It’s grown from a nerdy and obscure hobby to a massive, multi-billion market that includes massive AAA studios and tiny bedroom-bound independent game makers.
Just about everyone plays some form of video game. Whether you catch a few rounds of Candy Crush on your phone while taking a bus ride or are a hardcore gamer that spends you weekends screaming at people over a headset, there’s something for everyone.
Virtual reality has come into this already hyper-competitive industry with an eye ons taking its own claim. Indeed, it’s mainly the hunger for ever more realistic video games that drove the massive investment in developing modern consumer VR. There’s a lot of VR video game content getting published right now, but the jury is still out on how permanent it’s place in the gaming world will be.
VR gaming is popping up everywhere, but in general you’ll find that most VR games are coming out on PC where the premium VR systems live and on mobile devices, where cheap Google Cardboard thrills can be had.
Consoles have been slow to get into the whole VR thing. Right now the Sony Playstation 4 is the only video game console that has a VR headset which will work with it. There’s no concrete announcement that its main competitor, the Xbox One, is going to get something similar, but it’s possible given how well the PSVR has sold. Exceeding expectations by a lot.
It may take until the next major generational revision of the current console generation for VR to become a standard feature. That is if this generation’s VR console proves to be successful enough. So far so good!
Either way, I’ll be looking at VR games from every platform where they exist and try to introduce you to the best stuff and also some of the most interesting stuff.
Rethinking the Game
I’ve also decided to include articles about things that aren’t quite games here as well. There are plenty of VR experiences that are built with the same technology used to make video games, but are not actually games. Instead they might be interactive toys, stories or some other type of experience that we don’t have a real category for.
Video games themselves have evolved so much that the concept of what is or is not a game might be changing fundamentally too. So in this case I’m not going to apply the categorical definitions too harshly. If it’s broadly game-like then it’s fair game (pun intended) for inclusion.
Playing for Keeps
As videogames become more complex, realistic and engaging there’s a good chance that they’ll start replacing other forms of content such as film or books as the main way people relax or stimulate themselves mentally. In the long run what we might be heading for is something close to the holodeck from Star Trek. That was a system where you could craft or experience just about anything in human history and imagination.
I see VR games moving us away from current game design and closer to simulations with a stronger focus on goals than just pure sandbox play. Right now is possibly the most exciting time, as we see the transformation from old game design assumptions to new methods that work better within the VR medium.
More Than a Game
Apart from being a whole new level of entertainment, I hope that these games will also show the potential that VR has beyond just a sort of gimmick like 3D movies or crappy motion games we saw on the Wii and Kinect.
These are the first attempts at a whole new world of storytelling, learning and experience. A virtual reinvention of the arts. You saw it here first.