The Best VR Games & Apps To Kick Off The New Year

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Start the new year off right with these physically and mentally challenging experiences.

Let’s be honest, 2020 has been an absolute nightmare. From the wildfires to the lockdowns to the protests, this past year has proven to be one of the most difficult in recent memory, offering people the world over a seemingly endless wave of disasters and crises to overcome. Thankfully, 2021 presents a fresh start for all of us.

And what better way to kick off the new year than learning a new skill, establishing a killer workout regiment, or training your brain with intense puzzles and challenges? Start 2021 off on the right foot with one of the following VR games and apps:

SUPERNATURAL

Platform: Oculus Quest/Quest 2

Price: Free (subscription fee included)

Anyone bold enough to enter a public gym during the month of January will tell you just how insane the place can get post-holiday. This year you’ll find a majority of public gyms closed due to COVID-19, forcing many fitness enthusiasts to workout at home. This is where Supernatural comes in. Half fitness app, half VR rhythm game, Supernatural offers you a full-body cardio workout that has you slicing blocks and dodging obstacles to the beat of a thumping soundtrack, all while a virtual trainer guides you through each routine.

The app itself is available free on the Oculus Quest/Quest 2 alongside a monthly subscription fee of $19.99 ($149 annually). First-time users can sign-up for a free 30-day trial. Developer Within is constantly adding new classes and music, offering an ever-expanding catalog of beginner, intermediate, and advanced routines.

SPATIAL

Platform: Oculus Quest/Quest 2

Price: Free

With COVID-related lockdowns expected to continue well into 2021, social VR co-working platform Spatial couldn’t have arrived at a better time. This past year the app has seen a massive spike in usage (half a million virtual meetings), offering everyone from small teams to large corporations an intuitive and easy-to-use remote co-working solution. Employees can collaborate with one another in a 3D space using realistic custom avatars, take notes with their motion controllers, even import their own documents and 3D images.

Spatial is available free on the Oculus Quest/Quest 2. The company recently launched a new mobile AR mode, allowing you to access augmented reality projections of virtual meetings in real-time using a compatible smartphone device.

FACEBOOK’S QUILL

Platform: Oculus Rift/Rift S

Price: Free

With conventional film and television production at a virtual standstill, there’s never been a better time to explore the world of animation. Facebook’s Quill offers artists an all-in-one painting and illustration solution designed from the bottom-up for VR. Creators have access to a wide variety colors and tools perfect for 3D and 2D animation. Once you’re finished you can share your projects via the Quill Theater, allowing anyone with an Oculus headset to view your work.

Facebook’s Quill is available free on the Oculus Rift/Rift S. Those with an Oculus Quest/Quest 2 can download Quill Theater to enjoy user-created animations in VR.

MYST

Platform: Oculus Quest/Quest 2

Price: $29.99

Legendary graphic puzzle game Myst is now available in VR, offering standalone VR players what could easily be considered one of if not the most impressive VR puzzle game currently available on the Oculus Quest/Quest 2. Brought to us by Cyan World, the same team behind the original PC release, Myst drops you on a mysterious island where you’re tasked with uncovering the secrets behind a ruthless family betrayal.

Everything you know and love about the original is here alongside new art, music, and VR-specific interactions. There’s even the option for puzzle randomization, offering master puzzle-solvers an additional challenge. Myst is available for $29.99 via the Oculus Quest/Quest 2. Plans for an official SteamVR release is currently in the works.

HALF-LIFE: ALYX

Platform: SteamVR

Price: $59.99

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Don’t forget to take some time for yourself and enjoy all the incredible games VR has to offer. And what better way to kick-off the new year than by playing one of the best games of 2020, Half-Life: Alyx. Valve’s jaw-dropping VR adventure puts you in the shoes of resistance fighter and future sidekick, Alyx Vance, as she goes toe-to-toe with an invading alien force throughout the increasingly-hostile urban hell that is City 17.

Every character, environment, and object featured in HL:A is oozing with detail, resulting in one of the most technically-impressive VR experiences currently available on VR headsets. Whether you’re brand new to the Half-Life franchise or a die-hard fan, HL:A is an absolute must-play. Half-Life: Alyx is available for $59.99 (currently $44.99) via SteamVR.

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p class=”has-text-align-center”>Image Credit: VRScout

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