Immersion. It’s the cornerstone of every great horror game. If the player isn’t immersed in the terrors that surround them, they won’t feel the intended fear and the whole thing can fall flat. To truly engage players, developers used to have to rely solely on atmosphere, sound design, lighting, and effective in-game mechanics. Thanks to the scariest VR horror games, there’s another layer that quite literally draws them into the experience.
If it’s a fright you’re looking for, slip into a pair of virtual reality glasses and get lost in worlds filled with terrors sure to haunt your dreams. This list includes VR horror games for PSVR (PS4 and PS5), Oculus, Quest and Vive.
Affected: The Manor
We all love a good haunted house. The creaking floorboards, the over-abundance of cobwebs and creepy crawlies, the well-timed lightning strikes and rumbles of thunder – they all blend together to transport us to a world of the deranged and the supernatural. Unfortunately, our access to these attractions is typically limited to a 30-day stretch in Autumn. Affected: The Manor aims to remove that limitation by sending players into a digital spookhouse using the power of virtual reality.
Affected: The Manor isn’t a game, per se, and more like an interactive haunted attraction. There are no puzzles to solve or deranged killers to defeat, so progression is a breeze. However, you will have to overcome your own fears. Choose one of two routes to see what horrors await in this sprawling manor and try to make it to the end.
Affected: The Manor started as a demo for the Oculus Rift DK1 and was built upon to feature new audio and lighting mechanics that enhance the scares and help deliver a memorable horror VR experience.
For having such a delightful name, Arizona Sunshine is actually really gory and piled with rotting corpses. The zombie-shooter is a worthwhile entry in any virtual reality library, if not just for the ability to pop zombie heads in full-VR glory.
The gameplay may not be as in-depth as VR titles like Pavlov, but that doesn’t take away from the meat of the experience – killing zombies. As you cross the Arizona desertscape using artificial free-roaming, you’ll scour abandoned cars and empty buildings for supplies, bullets, and your escape from this virtual reality hell.
Arizona Sunshine is relentless with its waves of shamblers, but putting them down doesn’t get old. Equipped with an arsenal of dual-wield pistols, submachine guns, grenades, sniper rifles, and shotguns, you’ll be leaving behind piles of bodies to rot in the desert sun.
Alien: Isolation (MotherVR)
If ever there was a game that needed virtual reality compatibility, it was Alien: Isolation. Though it didn’t have it at launch, the MotherVR mod (get it?) created by Zack Fannon rectifies what feels like a glaring oversight, especially since Isolation was demoed on the Oculus Rift’s second development kit.
The slow pacing of Alien: Isolation makes it a great candidate for best VR game, and the MotherVR mod makes promising use of the core gameplay. Exploration throughout Sevastopol is enhanced through virtual reality, giving you more of an opportunity to take in the incredible level of detail Creative Assembly put into the space station.
It’s not all leisurely strolls through a desolate structure, however. When the xenomorph shows up, you may start to regret the VR. Not because it ruins the experience, but because nobody wants to be that close to the inner jaws of the galactic killer.
MotherVR may make some of the animations a little wonky, but it’s an overall smooth experience that makes hiding from the deadly xenomorph quite a bit more intense.
A Chair in a Room: Greenwater
What comes to mind when you think of religious killings, corruption, and immorality? Probably a top-rated virtual reality horror experience, right? A Chair in a Room comes with heavy themes, which help drive a pretty deep narrative that starts in The Greenwater Institute. As Patient 6079, you’re plagued with twisted visions, likely linked to the past you can no longer remember.
A Chair in a Room is divided up into six relatively short but effective chapters. Players will be sent spiraling into the horrors of Patient 6079’s past as they explore a world ripe with detailed environments and rich storytelling. If you’re in the mood for an in-your-face horror title, you may not appreciate A Chair in a Room’s more subtle approach to the genre.
The VR gameplay only serves to further immerse players in the ramshackled towns, derelict motels, and swamps of the Deep South.
These four games are the scariest in VR right now!