This week’s top five Oculus releases incorporate a little of everything, from cooperative heists to alien agriculture. There’s also plenty on offer for mobile VR users – no Rift required.
Slime Rancher: VR Playground
We loved the original version of this game – so much that we named it 2017’s Game of the Year on our sister site – so of course we’re beyond excited about the VR version.
A cute farming simulator inspired by classic JRPGs that – at least for us – can turn into an unsettling metaphor for industrial agriculture surprisingly quickly, Slime Rancher is fascinating and addicting.
Its simple “suck and blow” mechanic (using a vacuum tool) is easy to pick up and belies the complexities at play beneath the surface as herds of slimes eat, breed and mutate.
A big part of the fun is exploration the wilderness around your ranch, and Slime Rancher: VR is a stand-alone experience letting you explore three of its environments. While it doesn’t include a full implementation of the entire game, there’s plenty to suck and blow, and the focus seems to be more on the relaxing and exploring elements than the factory farming bit, which is fine with us.
Oculus Rift | 1 GB | FREE from Steam to owners of the original game
Crow: The Legend
from Baobab Studios
Directed by Eric Darnell (best known for Madagascar), this week’s most hyped VR release is an animated retelling of a Native American legend and featuring the voice of Oprah Winfrey, John Legend and Constance Wu, among others and was featured at Cannes.
Oculus Rift | 6.6 GB | FREE from Oculus
Oculus Go | 1.9 GB | FREE from Oculus
Gear VR | 1.9 GB | FREE from Oculus
from White Elk
A clever two-person cooperative concept based on heist movies, Covert makes good use of an asymmetric dynamic in a similar vein as Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes. The VR player is the thief, physically breaking in to highly guarded locations, while a non-VR player acts as the hacker, breaking into the security systems to assist the thief in getting away with the goods.
Crawl acrobatically through laser grids like Catherine Zeta-Jones in Entrapment! Hack like the hackers in Hackers! Live out other film-based fantasies, maybe even from movies that came out past the 1990s!
Oculus Go | 2.1 GB | $9.99 from Oculus
Gear VR | 2.1 GB | $9.99 from Oculus
from Cenek Strichel
We’re suckers for well-made, old-fashioned shoot-’em-ups, and Voxel Fly combines the entomological science fiction aesthetic of classics like Space Invaders and Yars’ Revenge with a voxel-based, blocky approach to graphics that’s one part Zaxxon and two parts Zenzizenzic.
Honestly, you had us at “space bugs,” but multiple game modes and different ships to select – from classic space fighters to blimps – just add to the fun.
Oculus Go | 56.2 GB | $1.99 from Oculus
Voronium – Locus Sols
from Gamalocus Studios
We’re also suckers for well-made tower defense games, in or out of VR, and Voronium – Locus Sols definitely delivers on that front. Combining tower defense and FPS mechanics with a science fiction narrative, this is a solid blend of strategy and action.
Oculus Rift | 5.5 GB | $14.99 from Oculus or from Steam