VR’s most powerful platform had another good year, but what do you need to play? Find out in the best PC VR games 2021 list.
Meta might have shifted its focus away from Rift and Valve might have turned its attention to Steam Deck, but the PC VR ecosystem still benefited by borrowing from other platform libraries, along with delivering a handful of experiences that you really could only get on PC.
Take note that, though we didn’t include early access titles in our Best VR Of 2021 awards last week, we decided to include them in this list to help highlight the full breadth of content on offer on PC VR this year.
We’re listing the best games on each VR platform all this week at UploadVR, and you can catch our list of the best PSVR games of 2021 right here, too. Remember you can find these games on SteamVR and the Oculus store, unless marked otherwise.
10. Floor Plan 2
I Expect You To Die 2 might’ve stolen the crown for the best VR puzzle game this year, but there’s still a lot of reasons to give Floor Plan 2 a chance. Whether it’s the adorably surreal Sesame Street-like characters or lightbulb-moment solutions to some of the game’s most devious problems, there’s a lot of memorable moments that could only be done in VR. This is a real treat of a puzzler.
9. Eye of the Temple
When PC VR headsets first released in 2016 there was a lot of talk about room-scale tracking and how physically walking around your environment was the most effective means of immersion. But focus on this design has long since faded given the amount of space it requires players to have. Eye of the Temple, though, recaptures some of that magic with its tomb-raiding exploits in which you step between moving stones, using a whip to solve puzzles and fight enemies. This is a great reminder of just how powerfully immersive VR can really be.
8. Sweet Surrender
Roguelites are starting to make a name for themselves in the VR space between In Death and Until You Fall, but Sweet Surrender is the first full shooter-focused entry in the genre that’s really worth a look. A finely-balanced gameplay loop, fantastic weapons and just the right amount of environment variety makes this a game that’s easy to get caught up in. We’re looking forward to future expansions in 2022.
7. Legendary Tales
Everyone wants Boneworks or Saints & Sinners with co-op support, but Legendary Tales has beaten them to the punch a bit. Granted there’s a lot to add to the early access version of this VR dungeon crawler, but even in its current form there are some genuinely great RPG mechanics and a physics-driven combat system that really helps you feel like you’re actually wielding a sword. Legendary Tales will hopefully only get bigger from here.
Yes, we know, another VR rhythm game. And, yes, Against borrows liberally from both Beat Saber and Pistol Whip. But somewhere in between this mash-up is a little something for Against to call its own, be it the super-stylish tone or the compelling flow established by changing up weapons and gameplay styles every few seconds. Even if you’re not into rhythm games, Against is one to check out.
5. After The Fall
Considering After The Fall released on both PSVR and Quest as well it’s genuinely surprising to see just how visually rich the game is on the PC platform. It really is a AAA product for the platform that pushes the power of PC VR. And, yes, we were hoping there’d be more game to it at launch, but you’d still be hard-pressed to find a more engaging co-op experience with friends.
4. Lone Echo 2 (Oculus Exclusive)
When you look across the gamut of PC VR games released this year, very few of them are really pushing the limits of visual fidelity and technical complexity on the platform. Lone Echo 2 does both, delivering arguably the best-looking VR game to date. Granted we found its glacial campaign to be one of diminishing returns, but you still won’t find a more immersive adventure out there.
3. I Expect You To Die 2
Puzzle games are hard to get right when it comes to VR, but I Expect You To Die 2 absolutely sets a template for others to follow. With a handful of snappy, varied challenges that have you thinking outside the box across a wide variety of locations, the game is in constant search of fun, engaging activities that really sing in VR. Even if you’re not into puzzle games, I Expect You To Die expertly communicates the power of VR.
2. Song in the Smoke
Song in the Smoke is a really great survival game. It’s got the perfect blend of hunting, crafting and resource gathering on a schedule that doesn’t frustrate, and there’s also a linear structure that ensures the game isn’t just about surviving a set number of days. Then you throw in the VR elements, like aiming your bow and arrow, or crushing up petals to make potions, and you have something that feels directly connected to the platform. If you’ve been sleeping on Song in the Smoke, now’s the time to dive in.
The best strategy games are always on PC, so it’s at least a little fitting that the best turn-based dungeon crawler VR has yet seen works so well on PC headsets. With full cross-play on Quest, Demeo is a stunning social VR achievement with deep, difficult gameplay that will hook you for hours on end. If you’re missing that game night feeling in the middle of the pandemic, you simply cannot afford to miss Resolution’s best game yet.
And that’s our list of the best PC VR games 2021! Agree with our picks? Think we missed anything? Let us know in the comments below!