Prices are falling in the world of VR. We’ve seen the Oculus Rift go from $600 with just an Xbox controller and one sensor to $400 with two Touch controllers and two sensors. The Vive dropped $200 and you can find the PSVR for as little as $250 right now. Soon, Oculus will release its all-in-one mobile headset, GO, and new headsets are on the horizon. It’s probably the best time to get into VR. But if you’re the kind of person who gets sick easy in VR or you just love traditional 3rd person or top-down video games, you’re probably wondering if there is anything in VR for you. We’re glad to say that, yes, there are plenty of top-down or 3rd person perspective games. And in the next few paragraphs, we’re going to tell you about our top three.
Kin: A Puzzle Platformer
It all started with Mario. In the 80’s, platform games represented cutting edge gaming technology. With the creation of games like Doom in the mid-nineties, it seemed puzzle platformers were doomed to the back row of your games cabinet. But platform games held on and we’ve seen a resurgence in recent years with games like Super Meat Boy.
One of the first games on the Oculus Rift was indeed a platform game reminiscent of Mario 64. And yet, the cartoonish and silly nature of Lucky’s Tale made the game feel made specifically for children. It certainly showed off the unique ability of a VR headset to immerse you in any game, even a puzzle platformer. But it presented very few challenges for players.
Enter Kin. Reminiscent of more artistic indie games like Superbrothers: Sword and Sorcery and the PS4 exclusive Journey, Kin puts you in charge of a white, flowy-haired character exploring the remnants of an ancient civilization. The colors would be trippy enough on screen, but in VR the neons and sharply contrasting colors almost overwhelm to the point of needing drug rehab afterward.
The gameplay is fairly simple. Slash, dash, jump. The levels are sprawling enough that they force you to move around to get a better perspective on the action. And the bad guys are actually challenging. This is a must-have in your VR collection. And it’s available on both Gear VR and Oculus Rift.
Do you love tabletop wargaming? How about Real Time Strategy? Then Brass Tactics is totally the game for you. Brass Tactics is basically Age of Empires in VR. You build armies and resources and then go head-to-head with a real person on the other end of the table.
Your player menu is ever present on your controllers. You can quickly change the direction of the battle at any moment. It’s fairly easy to get around the sprawling an massive gameboard. You simply drag yourself across the board, something you can’t do in real life with tabletop games. The colors are nicely subdued and the textures look hand-painted.
The single player is mostly a decent tutorial for the multiplayer. You only get a few campaigns in single player, and it lacks a cohesive story. If you’re going to get Brass Tactics, know you’ll get the most out of it when playing with others. And beware. This is an addicting game. Your family may begin to Google ways to help an addict. This game is exclusively on Oculus Rift, but if you have Revive, you should be able to play on the Vive.
Defense Grid 2: Enhanced VR Edition
In 2008 we got an excellent tower-defense strategy game for PC. And recently, Hidden Path has done it again! They’ve created an intense strategy game that is bent on breaking your mind and your spirit.
While most games ported from PC to VR aren’t always up to snuff, this game looks good and feels good. The textures pop and actually look gritty and your ability to leap around the map to control various aspects of the game board is smooth. You won’t feel any kind of jarring effect as you leap between posts.
Chapter one is free right now on Oculus Rift with more chapters as in-game purchases.