The Varjo Aero VR headset delivers the best visual and immersive performance in PC VR gaming. Now pair this with access to SteamVR’s vast library of VR games. In fact, we crowned it the best VR games platform, and you have the gateway to experiencing VR gaming that pushes your rig to its limits.
Alternatively, check out our master list of all the best SteamVR games in every category.
Space Exploration, Flight Sim, Open World
No Man’s Sky VR
Spacce Exploration, Open World, Base Building
Microsoft Flight Simulator 40th Anniversary Edition
Flight Sim, Open World, Management
The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners - Chapter 2: Retribution
Action, RPG, Survival Horror
FPS, Story-Driven, Horror, Action, Physics Puzzler
Race Sim, Sports
Kayak VR: Mirage
Sports Sim, Relaxing, Racing
Story-Driven, Adventure, Puzzler, Time Travel
Cyberpunk 2077 VR Mod
Dystopian Future, Open World, RPG, Sci-fi
33,99€ - (the mod is accessed through Luke Ross Patreon)
Resident Evil Village VR Mod
Survival Horror, First Person, Shooter
33,99€ - (the mod is accessed through Luke Ross Patreon)
When readers are met with descriptions of Elite Dangerous like ‘what would you do if you could fly anywhere in the universe?’ or ‘Elite Dangerous connects you with yourself as we all are made of star stuff’. These are great. However, my usual beginnings are, ‘how do you feel about steep learning curves?’ Elite Dangerous has one of the toughest starts to a game in understanding how to fly its different spaceships. However, once that hurdle is overcome, and you are transported to colorful nebulas, Icarus-level distances from stars, and mining rare-asteroid metals, this PC game in VR is worth it all.
On the other end of space exploration, we have No Man’s Sky VR. Yes, this open, ‘infinite’ universe game had some rough beginnings from an overspun hype mill. But Hello Games – the developer – held steadfast and turned this VR game around with numerous new and free content updates. Today, No Man’s Sky is a wonderful space exploration title with dog fighting, first-person shooting, and base building set in colorful alien worlds. A must-have with a Varjo Aero VR headset.
The next flight simulation VR game that Varjo Aero puts to justice and is the very definition of ‘picture perfect’ is Microsoft Flight Simulator 40th Anniversary Edition. What makes MS Flight Sim so mind-blowing is the lengths the developers took to render earth in enough detail to turn you into Amelia Earhart flying the world. To truly illustrate what MS Flight Sim will offer, boot the game up, enable real-world weather and live air traffic, go through the tutorial, and choose an airport you would recognize in real life. What will meet you is a dropped jaw with the words: “holy…”
Following the decision of the most visually immersive and best overall VR gaming experience is the coming The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners – Chapter 2: Retribution in February. Despite Retribution not being out yet, if the prequel Saints & Sinners is anything to go by and what the initial reviews say, then Retribution will be a VR treat to behold both for its 2023 visuals and deep survival, action, and horror gameplay.
Alternatively, if you can’t wait and haven’t played The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners yet, we greatly recommend you pick it up.
What is there to be said about Half-Life: Alyx that hasn’t already been said? In the slim chance you own a Varjo Aero VR headset and don’t know about the seminal Half-Life IP or the VR game Alyx, then it is a marvelously deep physics-puzzler with great shooting mechanics enmeshed in the trademarked sarcasm Valve is known for. Though what makes it on this particular list is the enveloping atmosphere and style Half-Life: Alyx exudes, excellently portrayed through the crispness only the Varjo Aero headset can deliver.
What makes the racing sim Automobilista 2 deliver real-life racing visuals through the Varjo Aero headset is the varied dynamic weather system together with Automobilista’s moniker of attention to detail and immersive driving physics. Today, there are numerous DLCs that enlarge the already plentiful content package coming with the vanilla game. So while you can get more detailed graphics in some of the other games on this list – especially the last two – Automobilista 2 is the best VR racing sim you can get right now.
There should be a warning on the Kayak VR: Mirage product page saying “you will likely never travel again” because the natural beauty you will glide past in your kayak is breathtaking. Namely, if you crank the settings to ‘cinematic’, the scenery will immediately send you into a meditative state. Sadly there are only four levels and environments, yet the day and night cycle with storm or calm weather do mix things up to great effects.
While Wanderer is not the most graphically intensive game out there, visual fidelity is not always what signifies an immersive VR gaming experience. For example, games with realism like Crysis, age worse than stylized games like Journey. The same is said with VR games and with Wanderer’s varied environments that can achieve great detail from its corridor level design: this Walking Sim deserves a shoutout.
The first of two VR-modded PC games is Cyberpunk 2077 VR Mod. Mind you, this VR mod is behind a paywalled Patreon page by the modder Luke Ross. However, I believe his hard work needs to be compensated, and the low entry through the “VR friend” Patreon tier is plenty worth it. Because if you have a rig that can run Cyberpunk 2077 in ultra settings and the virtual reality experienced through the Varjo Aero, then it transcends the game into a new realm. At first, you will get slight meta vibes of playing a future dystopia in VR. Yet, this feeling will fade as you notice the intricate details of the world and NPCs, especially at night. In short, you will want to play Cyberpunk 2077 in VR.
Before we cover the last VR mod, it is worth pointing out Luke Ross had made additional VR mods for Rockstar and Take-Two games like GTA 5 and Read Dead Redemption 2. Sadly, these were DMCA and copyright struck and no longer available. If they were, they would be featured on this list. Also, the upcoming and current VR mods for Horizon: Zero Dawn and Elden Ring are most likely to receive the same treatment, so act now if you are interested.
The Resident Evil Village VR Mod finally enables RE Village to be experienced in virtual reality. Something all of us felt should have been allowed from the start. Better late than never because Resident Evil 8 revives the survival horror scare factor the older RE games used to have through the stellar dilapidated atmosphere of run-down wooden huts stuck between snow-capped mountains. Every nook and cranny shines through the Varjo Aero’s 35 PPD. Just keep in mind, with Luke Ross’ impressive mods, the framerate you would have on your monitor will be halved in the Aero for the VR mod to function. In other words, you need beefy specs to run these experiences at around 144 FPS, as it will translate to 70 FPS in the VR headset.
Jakob Pii is Writer at VR Expert and currently lives in the UK. He started his career in VR gaming in 2015 and has stayed in XR since, from exposure therapy in VR to 360-degree video documentaries. He is fascinated by how emerging technologies change how we live, play and work.