We now have an official line-up of Steam VR games for HTC and Valve’s upcoming Vive VR headset. We’ve been teased by promising demos for months and finally they are starting to take the shape of fully fledged games.
Valve showed off 12 games at its content showcase in Seattle and confirmed that all of them will launch in 2016, so not necessarily alongside the headset itself in April. HTC and Valve can’t compete with Oculus yet on the range of apps, games and experiences that will be available in the near future. But the games below are a very good start.
If you’re taken with the HTC Vive set up, these are the very first VR games you’ll be playing on the headset later in 2016.
Frontier’s multiplayer space sim Elite: Dangerous will head to the Oculus Rift too this year but the developer has said that it’s now prioritising Vive. It’s more of a traditional, seated game than some of the other more experimental titles but the VR game has been in development for years now. It’s actually already available to play with VR headsets via a free update so those 7,000 Pre devs can all have a go.
The Gallery: Call of the Starseed
Cloudhead Games’ The Gallery: Call of the Starseed is really intriguing and is confirmed as a launch title for HTC Vive. A fantasy adventure game, Starseed sees you guided – by a recluse – on a dangerous quest and investigating an ancient device called The Machine.
It’s designed to take full advantage of room scale gameplay with the devs even creating their own Blink locomotion tech and putting MoCap actors inside the headsets. And this is only the first episode with three more The Gallery games coming every six months from April.
Another game that pushes the limits HTC and Valve’s tech is Fantastic Contraption, which just looks like so much fun. It started life as a popular Flash physics puzzle game in 2008 and involves well, building whimsical contraptions. There’s 40 levels to play through and dev Northway Games says it will launch “with Vive”.
A spy thriller for VR, Budget Cuts is based around motion controls so while it’s not a HTC Vive exclusive, it won’t launch for Oculus Rift until its Touch controllers arrive later in 2016. It uses a teleportation gun to move you around the game and is all about stealth as you play a robotic spy infiltrating a corporate complex at night.
Indie devs Stress Level Zero part-crowdfunded this little treat on Indiegogo back in 2015. It’s a multiplayer flying/combat game in which you choose a ship based on the size of the actual room you’re playing in and in shootouts, physically hide behind your ships’s defences. Designed from the ground up for the Vive’s motion controls (and Oculus Touch when they land), Hover Junkers is due to arrive on Steam in April 2016.
A stalwart of the HTC Vive demos, the now Google owned Tilt Brush is a 3D illustration tools that lets you walk around your creations made with the Vive controllers. More of an app than a game, it’s still pretty fun making paintings out of light brush strokes in VR.
Job Simulator: the 2050 Archives
Another game that we’ve demoed plenty of times on the Vive now, and loved it every time. Job sims include office worker and gourmet chef and the environments are cartoony, 3D kitchens and retro desk set ups. It’s very easy to cause mayhem and Owlchemy Labs is going after non-traditional gamers here who want to move about and ‘pick up’ virtual items.
A first person zombie shooter from Vertigo Games, Arizona Sunshine looks to be going for slick graphics and using motion controls to blow zombie heads off with virtual guns. There’s actually going to be a bunch of weapons to choose from in this apocalypse title A good combination. We don’t have a launch date yet but again, it will be available at some point this year.
An airport management sim meets strategy game that builds on the premise of something like Flight Control, but in 360 degrees, this is the debut game from new studio Phaser Lock Interactive. Airports the size of your dinner table are promised as is a fast pace of gameplay. It’s a launch title for the HTC Vive but is also due to come to Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR too.