Now that the Oculus Rift S is now officially out in stores, you can finally purchase a Rift headset again and experience Oculus VR with inside-out tracking, a more widely accessible halo-ring headband, enhanced display resolution, and lower pixel persistence. If you’re enjoying your new headset and are interested in the fitness benefits of VR gaming, you might want to know where you can find more games that promote active gameplay.
As of right now, a handful of my favorite titles are still entrenched over on the SteamVR side of things, where it seems like users are reporting issues with both the Steam sideloading process and the tracking implementations in games that don’t yet support the Rift S. That’s why this list is devoid of Pavlov VR and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR, two titles that I would normally (greatly) recommend, but will refrain from suggesting until some further patching goes out from Valve and/or the developers of the individual games.
Otherwise, here are the top 10 titles that will help you burn calories via physically engaged gameplay, each of which is a compulsory ‘must try’ for fresh-faced Oculus Rift S owners like yourself.
10. Racket: Nx – $20
Racket: Nx is an immersive racquetball simulator that feels both physically intense and electrifyingly addictive. The goal of the game is to chain together as many combos as you can by directing the ball against a full 360-degree dome that’s covered in bright yellow point nodes, multipliers, and segments that kill you if you hit them. Features include PVP multiplayer, an arcade mode, a singleplayer campaign with over 20 levels, crossbuy for Oculus Quest owners, and inherent support for LIV/mixed reality cameras.
Related content: Racket NX Game Review – Racquetball Will Never Be The Same
9. Racket Fury: Table Tennis – $20
Play through singleplayer campaigns and multiplayer tournaments alike in Racket Fury: Table Tennis, an exciting take on classic ping pong that supports crossbuy and crossplay between the Rift S and Oculus Quest. It boasts a physics system that duplicates the feeling of playing at an actual table tennis court, but with the added flair afforded by customizable robot avatars and original environments. Choose between Simulation mode for maximal realism, or go all-out in Arcade mode.
8. Blade & Sorcery – $20
Experience one of the most realistic medieval combat simulations around in Blade & Sorcery, an exemplary VR combat arena game that offers a full suite of different weapons, an incredibly detailed physics system, and countless foes to defeat in all manner of perfectly humane ways. Create your character and test your mettle as you face off against (gravity and) your own ability to wield weighty swords, spears, bows, axes, and bludgeons into battle.
7. Echo VR – Free ($10 for optional Echo Combat module)
Take flight in zero-g as you compete against teams of up to five other players to nail goals while fighting inertia. The base content of Echo VR was previously known as Echo Arena, a true competitive esport that has you dogfighting mid-air over a singular frisbee by grabbing onto other players, throwing knockout punches to stun them, and boosting off of them towards victory. Recently added was Echo Combat, which uses the same zero-g physics and avatars but introduces competitive lasertag gunplay that makes Echo VR on the Rift S a difficult title to put down.
6. SUPERHOT VR – $25
SUPERHOT VR is best known for making people do elaborate poses while shooting bad guys with shotguns in slow motion. It is, basically, The Matrix as a fully embodied VR game. Within SUPERHOT VR, you’ll find yourself accidentally completing what equates to an entire course on yoga as you run and gun through both the singleplayer campaign and the many challenge modes that come about once you’ve beaten the game.
Related content: Superhot VR Game Review – Excellent Core Workout
5. Dance Central VR – $30
If you’re hungry for a guided dance class in your new Rift S, then Dance Central VR is just the game for you. It’s feature-complete off the bat, offering multiplayer modes and an entire campaign rife with over 32 popular music tracks to dance to. Each character you meet has a different personality and a different dance style, and as you meet new characters you get to store their contact on your virtual phone, where they’ll keep you updated on new events and personal happenings. If you aren’t feeling like playing with NPC characters, however, you can team up with up to three other players, compete in dance battles, or simply hang out in a virtual club.
Related content: GDC 2019: Hands-On With ‘Dance Central VR’
4. Creed: Rise to Glory – $30
The most cinematic, most fun boxing game in VR has gone unchallenged. Not only did Creed: Rise to Glory win our award for ‘Best VR Boxing Fitness Game of 2018,’ it also offers one of the only chances you’ll ever get to hang out with Rocky Balboa in the Delphi Gym while you step into Adonis Creed’s shoes and train your actual real body through intense shadowboxing routines. If you’re not satisfied with the campaign, Creed also offers a freeplay mode where you can fight and train to your heart’s content, as well as the only semi-realistic multiplayer PVP boxing mode on the Rift S.
Related content: Creed: Rise to Glory VR Game Review: Get Ready to Rumble – It’s a Knockout!, 20 Tips for Creed: Rise to Glory Boxing and Fitness Training,
How to Knock Out All Boxers in Creed: Rise to Glory
3. BOXVR – $30
Boasting tons and tons of curated workout drills that were designed by real fitness trainers, BOXVR may be the only true fitness game you ever need for your Rift S. The premise is quite simple in that you pop hooks, jabs, uppercuts, squats, and blocks in order to clear pink and blue pads in a variety of different gym environments. You get a virtual calorie counter that interprets your punches into a rough calorie estimate from which you can set goals to work towards, and you can even import your own music that then spits out a procedurally generated workout map to play in. If you have friends who also own BOXVR, you can even compete against their scores and vice versa with the group workout mode.
Related content: How To Build A Full Body Beginner to Advanced Workout Routine With BOXVR, BOXVR Gets Group Workout Update and Itunes Support!, Why We Still Think Beat Saber, The Thrill of the Fight, and BOXVR Form The Best Home Workout Regimen
2. Beat Saber – $30
What can I say about Beat Saber, our winner for ‘Best VR Fitness Game of 2018’, that hasn’t already been said? Slash targets until your heart stops, get fully immersed in the music, and do it in style (with mods and custom tracks). Fostering a diehard community, a new official level editor, and a roadmap of new content and DLC coming directly from the developers at Beat Games, Beat Saber is better than ever. You’re just in time to plop on your new Rift S and discover what the noise is all about.
Related content: Beat Saber Game Review – A Jedi Samurai Rhythm Game, How to Play ‘Beat Saber’: Top 12 Tips & Tricks (From the Pros), New Beat Saber Mod Manager Will Get Your Custom Songs Working Again, Top 10 Beat Saber Custom Levels That You Must Try, How to Kill It in Beat Saber with Weighted Gear (Without Hurting Yourself!)
1. The Thrill of the Fight – $10
To this day, The Thrill of the Fight is easily the most accurate simulation of boxing that, as long as you stick to making entirely natural movements, will push you to the brink of literal death. In it, you repeatedly contend with foes that push you to operate at nearly 100% of your maximum heart rate more times than most people are used to.
Note that the AI doesn’t have a heart, and thus is relentless in its mission to hunt you down and turn your body into a bag of spaghetti. Knockouts (in your favor) are rare, and even when you do get a knockout, it doesn’t matter. The Thrill of the Fight isn’t a game that’s about winning. Instead, it’s about failing your way to a heightened level of fitness that you wouldn’t have achieved if you weren’t running up the eternal hill of unfairly challenging and overtly physical gameplay that forces you to shadowbox like a pro MMA fighter. The Thrill of the Fight won’t teach you to fight; it will, on the other hand, turn you into a champion. Welcome to the club.
Related content: The Thrill of the Fight Game Review – Best VR Boxing, The Thrill of the Fight Deep Dive: 10 Tips to Keep Your Opponent Down for a 10 Count, Why Creed: Rise to Glory and The Thrill of the Fight Complement One Another, 5 Fitness Challenges to Reignite Your Love for The Thrill of the Fight, The Thrill of the Fight – Gets Closer To Full Release With This New Update
Eleven: Table Tennis – $20
Onward – $25
GORN – $20
Robo Recall – $30
The Climb – $40
Raw Data – $40
Windlands 2 – $30
OrbusVR: Reborn – $40
Rec Room – Free
VRChat – Free
Sprint Vector – $30
In Death – $30
Sparc – $20
Particularly agree or disagree with the items on this list? Feel like we left anything out? Let us know in the comments!