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As more people have access to virtual reality with portable headsets such as the Quest 2, it’s inevitable that many of these new users will be interested in competitive gaming with their portal to immersive realities.

There are many different types of esports available in virtual reality and since you’re actually immersed in the game and you use your body physically to determine what happens in game, VR esports is much more akin to traditional sports than esports.

There are already well-established communities who are welcoming new Quest users to play the games they love and below are a few of my personal favorites. The recommendations here have been selected not only for their ability to offer competitive opportunities, but also because they appeal to players of all ages and have engaged, inclusive communities.

There’s most certainly an opportunity for competitive gaming on the Quest 2 so check out some of these games and communities. See which ones most appeal to you and then let us know what you think.

Onward VR

This first-person shooter from Downpour Interactive has realistic combat mechanics that let the player experience infantry combat in an immersive environment on a variety of maps. Onward is a true VR mil-sim built from the ground up for virtual reality and the game served as the impetus for the creation of the VR Master League, a community-driven platform that features the most competitive VR games on the market.

In the Onward community, you’ll find veteran players who answer questions, take newcomers under their wing, and offer rookie bootcamps on a regular basis. Since the game’s original release August 2016, the community Discord has grown to over 15,000 members. Many of those have joined since the game launched on the original Quest in July 2020 and the numbers are sure to continue rising. This summer Onward broke records with its Quest debut as it made over $1 million in revenue in just four days – faster than any other title on the Facebook platform.

Echo Arena

Ready At Dawn set a high bar for VR esports with Echo Arena. Teams compete in a zero-gravity virtual arena and try to score in the opponent’s goal by using a combination of athletic skills, strategy, and teamwork. It also helps if you have an ability to make precise shots from around the arena. If you’re interested in a VR game that will raise your heartrate, keep you physically active, and make you feel like you’re actually flying around in zero gravity, then Echo Arena could be a perfect fit.

There are many active social media pages affiliated with Ready At Dawn’s Echo universe. Community members have had a history of welcoming and training newcomers to the game since it was released in July 2017. You’ll find many people willing to train newcomers to the competitive scene and there’s an extensive list of educational videos for players and teams.

Echo Arena joined the VR Master League last fall and the community Discord server has grown from 5,000 members to nearly 20,000 since the game became available on the Quest earlier this year. There are also active Echo communities on Facebook. New players looking for competitive opportunities should also keep an eye on VR Fitness Insider as we’ll share news of VR esports events such as the Rookie Crossplay Cup we covered in May and the Quest 2 Rookie Cup that opened registration last week.

Population: One

Many people thought battle royale on the Oculus Quest wouldn’t be possible, but it is. Not only is it possible, but BigBox VR has done amazing work and raised the bar for VR esports with Population: One. The game is fun to play, easy to learn, and challenging to master. There are leaderboards where you can see how you compare to other players, including your friends, and it’s incredibly easy to party up with them as well so you can enjoy the game together.

Honestly this game is addictive.

While the game isn’t set up yet for competitive VR esports, there are some efforts by players to arrange scrimmages through timed queuing via Discord coordination. Meanwhile, you’ll get your competitive fix simply by playing the game, whether in pubs or with friends. I can’t recommend Population: One enough and I think you’re going to love it on the Quest.

Blaston

Resolution Games launched Blaston on October 8 and the reviews are overwhelmingly positive. There’s an 87% 5-star rating on the Oculus store and players are thrilled with the multiplayer mode of this game.

In this VR dueling game, players use futuristic high-tech weapons to attack opponents in PvP combat where they need to move constantly on their dueling platform or risk being blasted with the incoming bullets. Check it out.

Elven Assassin

This is one of my favorite VR games – single player or multiplayer. Whether you want to go in and kill the hordes of enemies trying to break down your defenses, work with a team of Elven Assassins to protect your town, or compete against others in a player-versus-player deathmatch, Wenkly Studio has provided a little bit of everything in this enjoyable game.

While Elven Assassin might not be the best for cardio, it’s a fantastic upper body and core workout that provides a fun VR esports experience for players who enjoy trying to perfect their skills so they can become the very best. It’s incredibly rewarding to play this game and develop accurate shooting skills with your bow and arrow.

One note of caution with this game. It really does provide a great workout for your arms and shoulders so be sure to stretch beforehand!

Racket: Nx

If you enjoy racquetball, then Racket: Nx might be a good fit for you. You can enjoy an intense solo workout or participate in a multiplayer showdown.

One Hamsa’s Racket: Nx is played inside a giant glass dome so kind of makes you feel like you’re inside a huge round pinball machine. When you hit the ball, it impacts the dome and you earn points depending on where it strikes and how it rolls. You can learn to control the ball for higher scores.

MarineVerse

Although the VR sailing community is small, this is one of the most dedicated community groups I’ve seen. They’re friendly, willing to help, and eager to share their sport of choice with others.

MarineVerse Cup is a multiplayer competitive VR sailing game that enables anyone with a VR headset to sail in daily and weekly races as well as special events. There are leaderboards and a lot of friendly banter that takes place in the community as sailors try to top one another’s times on various courses.

MarineVerse has done a great job simulating sailing in immersive reality. The game features varying wind conditions and you’ll need to think fast as you trim the sheets and pull the winches. If you’re interested in a well-made VR sailing game, this is it.

Note:  This game is still in beta for the Oculus Quest. Reach out to the MarineVerse team and meet other Quest sailors on the MarineVerse Discord server. They’ll tell you how to join the MarineVerse Cup Quest beta.

Pro Putt

Pro Putt by Topgolf is the premier golf game in virtual reality. The easy-to-play, hard-to-master experience is something that can be enjoyed by golf-enthusiasts or those simply interested in trying the sport and then developing their skills before heading out to the green in physical reality.

In the game there’s a large practice area and four courses that utilize a physics model to make it feel like the ball is rolling on a real green. While there are some long distance holes where you’ll need to hit the ball further, the game does focus on putting, as the name indicates. This is actually probably an advantage in the home setting where you’re using a VR headset and since putting makes up a good portion of a player’s score (41.3%) in golf, it’s important to get it right.

Players can earn achievements in Pro Putt and there are leaderboards for bragging rights. The game also includes the option to play against an AI bot and multiplayer options include the option to play against friends or compete against a random player.

There was a charity VR golf tournament earlier this summer and there are sure to be more official events so if golf if your game, be sure to check this out.

Rec Room Paintball

Join your friends for an unforgettable paintball experience in immersive reality. This is one of the largest competitive communities in virtual reality so you’ll never have difficulty finding competition, but you’ll need to learn how to dodge incoming attacks, strategically teleport so you can ambush enemies, and crouch behind obstacles when seeking a bit of safety.

If you enjoy cartoonish characters, lively conversation, and paintball, you’d probably enjoy Rec Room Paintball!

 


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