The Dog Days of Summer have been anything but when it comes to VR gaming!
I can remember back to a time when the Summer season was a videogaming wasteland. Very few releases of any significance would dare launch in the summer doldrums. In 2018, at least in the world of VR gaming, it's been quite the opposite. So many outstanding games have piled up in recent months that it's probably put a serious dent into gamers wallets, in addition to their "real world" relationships and household responsibilities. There's just so many good VR games right now for gamers to sink their teeth into, that it makes it quite difficult to find the time to fit everything in.
The Summer season kicked off with two pretty big arrivals to PC-VR in early June. Virtual Virtual Reality by Tender Claws arrived on the Oculus Rift on June 6th for $19.99. The title had gained notoriety as one of the more outstanding releases on the Samsung Gear VR platform. The Oculus Rift translation seems to have passed with flying colors. It's just such an entertaining and bizarre game, that it absolutely begs to be experienced by any adventurous Rift gamers. Of course, the other huge game to arrive in early June was Moss by Polyarc for the Rift and Vive. The game had arrived earlier in the year on PlayStation VR, to widespread acclaim, but it's popularity on PC-VR platforms has been even more impressive. In fact, Moss has sold so well on PC-VR, that it's beginning to change the narrative about 3rd person VR games in general.
In mid June we saw the arrival of Budget Cuts by Neat Corporation, while Contagion VR: Outbreak arrived towards the end of the month. Budget Cuts is probably better known for being something of a disappointment, compared to the lofty expectations that were placed on the title, but it's still one of the better examples of a stealth VR game we've seen thus far. Sure, it has it's share of bugs and jank, but it's still one of the more solid releases of 2018. Contagion VR: Outbreak has also had it's share of issues, but it's still an entertaining romp with a lot of promise if the developers can continue to patch and improve the experience.
Have you ever heard the phrase, "Christmas in July"? Well, July 2018 certainly seemed like the holidays for many VR gamers. Quite possibly some of the best releases of the year landed last month. The first huge release to arrive was Seeking Dawn on July 12th. Developed by Multiverse Entertainment, Seeking Dawn arrived with great fanfare and a hefty 40 dollar price tag. The game has seen mixed reviews, but most agree it's another solid VR release for fans of Sci-Fi shooting and exploration. July's next huge release hit Sony's PlayStation VR. Firesprite's long awaited rogue-like The Persistence made it's debut on the 24th. The thing most immediately striking about The Persistence is it's uncanny resemblance to Dead Space. While certainly falling short of Visceral Game's classic horror/thriller, Firesprites roguelike gets close enough to make the comparisons appropriate. It's probably one of the more intense horror/thriller games in VR since Killing Floor: Incursion.
As we got deeper and deeper into the month of July the hits just kept piling on. Marvel Powers United VR was easily one of the more anticipated games of 2018. It finally made landfall on July 26th. While the title isn't universally adored, the game still has many redeeming qualities, and could prove to be a great gateway drug for Marvel fans to get excited about the medium of Virtual Reality. Of course, it might be the two games that arrived on the final day of July that really made this Summer one for the books. Both Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice and Pixel Ripped 1989 landed on July 31st. Talk about an explosive day in VR gaming! Both games have been getting absolutely rave reviews, and VR Game Rankings can't help but agree in both cases. Especially for Pixel Ripped 1989, one of the true standouts of 2018 so far.
Well, we've finally made it to the current month. August 2018. We're only nine days into August so far, but we've already seen the release of two very strong titles. On August 7th, Survios delivered the music rhythm game Electronauts. To say this game was flying under our radar would be an understatement, but after spending some time with the game, we're absolutely convinced that Survios has another hit on their hands! You can go from zero musical talent or ability, to bad ass DJ in about 5 minutes flat. Seriously! We have very little musical abilities here at VR Game Rankings, but we almost considered quitting our day jobs and going on tour after our time with Electronauts. It's just that easy and fun. The last game we wanted to mention for this article is Megaton Rainfall. The game launches today for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive platforms. Pentadimensional Games has done an absolutely tremendous job of bringing together a game that will remind you of two classic Sci-Fi/Fantasy franchises, War of the Worlds and Superman. You play the role of a god-like creature with tremendous super-human abilities. You're entrusted to protect the citizens of a planet under attack from an alien menace. However, the true star of Megaton Rainfall is the wickedly creative designs of the alien spaceships and vehicles. It's as if this alien menace thought very long and hard about how to truly wreck shop among the cityscapes of this planet. It's truly a sight to behold.
We've mentioned a total of eleven high quality VR games that have launched so far this Summer, but there's still plenty of firepower on the way before Summer 2018 is in the books. Several huge games are coming later this month including Firewall: Zero Hour by First Contact Entertainment and Torn by Aspyr Media. So get out your fans, pump that air-conditioning, and get to playing this smorgasbord of VR goodness!