Horror in VR may seem like an easy genre. The players are essentially ‘trapped’ inside whatever environment you put them in. Throw a few ghosties and jump scares at them and boom, profit. Right? Well, you’d be surprised how many developers get this wrong. To help you steer clear of the bad eggs, XR Source provides this feature on the 7 best VR horror games!
The Best VR Horror Games
VR horror games work best when the player isn’t just wary of things that go bump in the night. The player needs to be immersed in the atmosphere, instead of simple the potential of something jumping out from around the corner. That’s not to say that jump scares aren’t a part of the proceedings – they certainly are – but they’re a trick to keep in your back pocket, not to lead with.
And so, with that in mind, we come to the choices for the seven best VR horror games. Below you’ll find everything from action-horror to virtual haunted houses, playable across a breadth of VR headsets.
Phasmophobia is playable on a traditional flat screen as well as in VR. The game sees you becoming part of a team of ghost hunters investigating haunted locations and uncovering clues about the paranormal activity happening within.
As one of the most famous VR horror games of recent years, Phasmophobia‘s popularity shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. However, the fact that the game is still in Early Access on Steam might. Developer Kinetic Games is still promising more for Phasmophobia in the future. Specifically, more maps and ghosts.
Resident Evil VII: biohazard
Don’t think Resident Evil VII: biohazard is a real horror game? You’re not alone. But you’re also missing one of the most significant points of VR horror. As stated in the intro to this article, the best VR horror games immerse the player not just with frights, but with atmosphere. And Resident Evil VII: biohazard delivers this in spades.
The first act of the game has you approach and then explore a delipidated house in the US deep south. Unaware of who – or what – lives in the property, the first few rooms throw all manner of intrigue and disgust at the player. The next few hours will have you scurrying around the house, learning about it’s occupants and eventually being stalked by them.
The Exorcist: Legion VR
Wolf & Wood are building quite a catalogue of varied VR experiences. Not only do they have upcoming experiences such as C-Smash VR and The Last Worker, but also they developed one of the most popular VR exclusive horror games.
The Exorcist: Legion VR is actually a series of five short experiences. You play as a detective who must investigate a series of demonic possessions. Each chapter features a unique demonic entity that will test your courage and resolve.
AFFECTED: The Manor – Complete Edition
The original VR horror experience, AFFECTED: The Manor isn’t really a game. It’s a walk through a virtual haunted house. Perhaps the purest example of VR horror in this feature, there is no way to fail. You simply exist in this world, and most be brave enough to make your way through the titular manor.
AFFECTED: The Manor debuted way back in 2016 for the Samsung Gear VR, but has since been ported and upgraded for near-every VR platform. The recently released AFFECTED: The Manor – Complete Edition includes a speedrun mode and a revamp of the original game wherein you only have a candle to light your way.
Paranormal Activity: The Lost Soul
Another early VR horror game, Paranormal Activity: The Lost Soul debuted as a VR-exclusive but has since been adapted to flatscreen platforms also. The game offers an original story based on the mythology of the massively popular film franchise.
Armed with only a flashlight, you will explore what appears to be a quiet average looking home in a woodsy neighborhood. Before long, you discover you’re not alone. You’ll find clues unraveling the horrifying mystery of what’s gone on in this house and struggle to survive the terror that hunts you.
The only developer with two entries in this feature, White Door Games have made a name for themselves in VR horror. In Cosmodread you play as a scientist exploring an alien spaceship. Comparisons to Event Horizon are not too far off the mark.
Every time you play Cosmodread you will experience a new procedurally generated layout. This means random positions for rooms, corridors, items and hazards, and different emergent situations. You’ll never quite know what’s behind the next door. Unlike many of the VR horror experiences in this feature, you’ll be able to use collected resources to craft weaponry. It’s a chance to fight back against the horrors you find within!
And the second entry from White Door Games, the classic Dreadhalls. This title originated way back on the Oculus Rift development kits – before a consumer VR headset had been released – and as such is fondly remembered by VR early adopters. However, several years on, the game still holds-up well.
In Dreadhalls, you are trapped deep inside a massive dungeon. Much like Cosmodread, the game features procedurally generated environments.. However, this time your only weapons will be stealth, your own courage, and a faint light.
That wraps up our picks for the seven best VR horror games! What are your thoughts? Any that we missed? Let us know in the comments below!