Category Archives: Oculus Rift News

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Outstanding New Oculus Releases for Summer 2020

Great New Oculus Releases for the Weirdest Summer Ever

No world is out of reach. Grab your headset and let these enchanting worlds come to life with this month’s titles.

The Line

by ARVORE Immersive Experiences
Release Date: July 9th, 2020

Winner of “Best VR Experience” winner at the Venice Film Festival, The Line is set inside a miniature model of São Paulo, Brazil in the 1940s and features narration by Rodrigo Santoro of Westworld fame.

As you fiddle with machinery and twiddle with knobs in this 20-minute roomscale experience, you’ll reveal an unlikely love story between two miniature dolls.

Paper Beast

by Pixel Reef, published by Plug In Digital
Release Date: July 24th, 2020

Explore a beautiful, strange and beautifully strange world of artificial life – a new ecosystem evolving in hidden spaces deep inside the Internet – in Paper Beast, the newest creation from Another World creator Eric Chahi.

Paper Beast offers two games modes, a puzzle-based adventure and a sandbox, but the real star here is the environment, populated by (artificially) intelligent creatures resembling something like a cross between Wayne Douglas Barlowe’s alien animals and ’90s visions of cyberspace.

Add the ability to alter the landscape, plus a soundtrack featuring Japanese punk trio TsuShiMaMire and electronic producer Roly Porter, and we’re more than intrigued, we’re obsessed!

The Under Presents: The Tempest

by Tender Claws
Release Date: July 6th, 2020

The Tempest is the latest interactive live theatrical adventure from The Under, a multi-player VR experience from Tender Claws, and gives players the chance to work magic with Prospero in an innovative new approach to the Shakespeare classic. (In order to participate, players will need to purchase a ticket and set a showtime, as this is a “live” experience, running through September.)

Also available: Timeboat!, a single-player adventure about an arctic research ship, complete with time travel and a mysterious dolphin.

Layers of Fear

by Bloober Team S.A.
Release Date: July 9th, 2020

Much as we enjoyed the original 2016 release, Layers of Fear is even better in VR. Drawing less on jump scares than atmosphere to create its atmosphere of dread as it puts players behind the eyes of a troubled painter losing his grip on reality as he tries to create his masterpiece.

As perception blurs the lines between reality and hallucination, the artist’s mansion seems to rearrange itself, doors disappearing and reappearing in different places, oil paint dripping from the walls like blood, and artistic genius dances a minuet with madness.

Its very premise makes this one part psychological horror and one part virtual art gallery (albeit a gallery for those who prefer Francis Bacon and Francisco Goya to Manet or Monet).

Enjoy the art, and remember that paintings can’t hurt you…or can they?

Five Nights at Freddy’s: Help Wanted

by Steel Wool Studios
Release Date: July 16th, 2020

On the other hand, maybe jump scares are your thing! In that case, check out Five Nights at Freddy’s: Help Wanted, bringing the ridiculously popular franchise to the Oculus Quest with a collection of both classic and brand new mini-games set in your favorite twisted pizza parlor.

It’s particularly poignant as hundreds of Chuck E. Cheese’s are now being shut down, likely due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, and the already creepy and wonderful animatronic mouse and his colleagues upon which this insanely popular indie hit is based are now littering desert landfills nationwide. (Someone save them!)

Featuring updated scenes from Five Nights at Freddy’s 1 through 4 as well as Five Nights at Freddy’s: Sister Location, this collection makes hiding from murderous animatronic animals more visceral than ever.

Personally, if I were hired as a night repairman for a pizza restaurant, I’d probably quit after the first night of being chased by a killer Chuck E. Cheese knock-off – nostalgia for good times past or not – but your mileage may vary.

Five Interesting and Solid New Releases for Oculus July-August 2019

The days of not having a large enough VR catalog are now well in the rearview mirror, and now we can begin to really pick and choose between the standouts and everything else. The following is a list of solid new releases for Oculus devices we wanted to share circa July-August 2019.

Voyager

from Brian Keeley-DeBonis

Currently in Early Access, this little game from Brian Keely-DeBonis already has us captivated with its exploration and puzzle-driven trip to an abandoned but otherworldly village that looks a little bit like the Anasazi ruins by way of The Legend of Zelda.

An evocative, reverb-heavy ambient score that reminds us a bit of David Sylvian’s work with Can’s Holger Czukay adds to the mystique.

Oculus Go | 277 MB | FREE from Oculus

ROGAN: The Thief in the Castle

from Smilegate Entertainment

We’re getting strong Thief and Dishonored vibes from this one, not just because of the stealth focus but also the not-quite-Medieval, not-quite-Renaissance and not-quite-Steampunk setting.

The game focuses not only on stealth but also the audio elements of sneaking around – listening for nearby guards and doors opening and closing – but even without the Thief-style stealth elements, we’d probably be all in on ROGAN: The Thief in the Castle just for the costume design alone.

Oculus Rift, Oculus Rift S | 7.3 GB | $39.99 from Oculus or Steam

Westworld Awakening

from Survios

More stealth, this time set during the second season of the eponymous HBO series, Westworld Awakening sees players taking on the role of a self-aware android – a “host,” in the show’s parlance – exploring a sinister corporate underworld.

Stealth and puzzles abound, and the tension of being stalked by a homicidal host puts this one right between science and fiction and survival horror.

Oculus Rift, Oculus Rift S | 17 GB | $29.99 from Oculus or Steam

DUSTNET

from SCRNPRNT

DUSTNET is an experimental take on multi-player shooters, set in an imagined crumbling, far-future de_dust2 server.

If you don’t immediately get that reference, don’t worry; you don’t have to be a hardcore Counter-Strike player to appreciate this game’s vector graphics-driven, almost abstract interpretation of the original game. And it’s cross-platform, so you can even play with your flat screen friends!

Oculus Rift, Oculus Rift S | 250 MB | $5.99 from Steam

Meu

from Radix Motion

The first release from Radix Motion, a small development team focusing on the intersection of neuroscience and VR, Meu is a movement toy that lets you capture and edit body language and gesture with some fun psychedelic filters and motion-controlled musical effects.

The ability to record and share adds a social component.

Oculus Rift, Oculus Rift S | 414 MB | FREE from Oculus or Steam

Video: Author Blake Harris & VR Dev Blair Renaud Debate the Oculus Ecosystem

VRTO 2019: VR & the Road to Now…& Then – feat Blake J. Harris, Blair Renaud, Keram Malicki-Sanchez

In this uncompromising chat set at the VRTO 2019 Virtual Reality & Augmented Reality conference in Toronto, author Blake J. Harris discusses his insights from time spent with with Palmer Luckey during the time Oculus was acquired by Facebook, the future of consoles and concerns around privacy. Indie game developer Blair Renaud dukes it out with VR investor Tipatat Chennavasin about how to price VR games on the Oculus Quest, and everyone gets into the fray to discuss what will ultimately make VR successful in the eyes of the public and the people who invested money and time to get it there.