Writer, Dungeon Master, creator. Likes to talk about game design. Follow him on Twitter @_RKDnc
May 26th, 2022
11 Best Seated VR Games
Back in the early days of VR, when headsets cost as much as your PC did, running around in roomscale VR was a rarity for most VR games. Instead, we often had static, stationary experiences to enjoy instead.
Whether you prefer to sit to get in the zone or you don’t want to risk punching a hole in your wall, these six seated VR games will keep your cheeks firmly planted on your seat, or at least the edge.
Premise: You’re painting but in VR! It’s not as simple as it sounds though, as painting isn’t just what we did in kindergarten.
While not everyone is artistic, most people like to blow off steam with a little art or doodling. PaintingVR helps by offering a unique experience without the need for actual supplies.
Personally, my favorite feature is the built-in web browser. I have always wanted to paint like Bob Ross, but I’ve never wanted to go out and get all the supplies and mess along with it. With this app, I can watch Bob Ross on Netflix in VR and follow along at my own pace!
If you’re looking for a relaxing, chill experience, this is a stellar option. Not only does it feel immersive, but the option to just make a mess and call it art is always there for you.
Premise: A spaceflight sim where you can do almost anything as you fly through our galaxy.
By far my most played VR game, right behind Beat Saber. This game is seated only, as the entire game takes place in your cockpit.
For the uninitiated, ED is a spaceflight sim in a 1:1 recreation of our galaxy. Not our solar system, but the entire galaxy. You can do just about anything in this universe, such as exploring, mining, bounty hunting, and more.
It’s an amazing and unique experience that can easily make you lose track of time and definitely worth checking out.
However, the newest expansion, Odyssey does not support VR. Thankfully this expansion is entirely optional, and it doesn’t add much to the game but some subpar FPS arenas.
This game is incredibly immersive, as the ship interiors are all unique and there is almost always something going on. I’ve spent hours bounty hunting around asteroid fields, and getting lost in the moment.
Because the game is centered around making your own fun, your options are open to finding what is the most fun for you. I started off as a trader, hauling freight and cargo between systems until I decided to start taking passengers instead. However, after one too many close calls with space pirates, I decided to sell my space taxi for a sleek fighter to help protect the galaxy from criminals.
The game’s community is vibrant and active as well, so you can easily find some wingmates and fly together into the black.
Microsoft Flight Simulator
Premise: A detailed and immersive flight sim for hardcore enthusiasts.
In a similar vein to Elite, Microsoft Flight Sim is a detailed and immersive flight sim.
While it may not be as large as our entire galaxy, it does offer the entirety of our planet for you to explore. And I do mean the whole planet, as it is a 1:1 scale recreation of our world.
The biggest downside to MSF is how realistic the simulation aspect of the game is. Those who aren’t prepared to learn how planes work will not enjoy this game at all. You can turn off several assists in the game to make it easier, but at that point, you’re basically on autopilot.
This game also is much better with a HOTAS, as the VR controls are lacking. They are releasing updates to make it better but for now, it’s better with a gamepad or HOTAS.
Anyone who enjoys beautiful sights and planes will love this game. It offers a detailed and immersive simulation experience and learning how to fly feels like an accomplishment on its own.
While this style of game might not scratch every gamer’s itch, it still serves as one of the few AAA experiences that VR offers, but it does require a beefy setup for the most immersion.
I Expect You To Die 1 & 2
Premise: Play as your own interpretation or James Bond (or Austin Powers) as you solve puzzles in an escape room experience.
Each of these games is incredibly well-known for being some of the best VR games out there, so it’s no secret why these made our list.
You play as an elite secret agent and are tasked to solve puzzles or die in wheat is basically a VR escape room, where failure means death. It has superb humor and an interesting, engaging world to poke around in.
The only real downside to each of these games is that they don’t offer any replay value. Once you’ve learned how to solve a puzzle, that’s it. They aren’t randomized or anything, so it becomes sort of a ‘one and done’ kind of game.
These games are brilliantly funny, and the puzzles are unique and interesting. While the puzzles may not be incredibly difficult, the game still serves as a great VR experience.
Those who want a humorous and slightly difficult game should pick this up, but remember the game doesn’t offer too much replayability.
Premise: Fast-paced, motorsports simulations that can get your blood pumping.
This is sort of a catch-all category of several titles, so just roll with it.
There are a lot of sim racing games out there, and most of them have some form of VR support. Don’t believe us?Check out our list of the best VR sim racing games!
Whether you’re looking for a pure simulation or something a little more casual, there’s a sim racer for you. However, the experience is much better with a steering wheel over VR controllers or a gamepad.
Most of these games are dirt cheap during Steam sales, so you can dive in with little commitment and see if it’s a good fit for you. I personally recommend Project Cars 2 for beginners, as it has a huge selection of tracks and cars.
One thing to note is that some of these games have spotty VR implementations, so some in-game menus may be in 2D or require you to take your headset off.
Anyone who is a fan of racing games beyond Mario Kart should be looking to these games as the next jump to a whole new world. They all offer realistic experiences in a variety of different classes of motorsports, and most of these games are pretty cheap.
However, you’ll want to invest in a steering wheel (or at least a proper gamepad) to get the best experience, as the VR implementations of these games are purely for visuals, and they have no touch controller support.
Premise: You play in a unique third-person view as you help guide a mouse across a lush, beautiful world in this short action platformer.
I’ve always thought of Moss as a unique sort of game, as you help a tiny mouse named Quill as they trek across lush landscapes. You play in a third-person perspective as you guide your furry companion in a platforming hack-and-slash.
The game isn’t very long, but the experience is truly one of a kind, and it shows how unique it is while you play. It is by far one of the essential VR experiences that a lot of people swear by.
Some players with Vive controllers might find issues with the game, as it seems the controls don’t mix well with the trackpad.
They did release a sequel to the game, but as of April 2022, there are no plans for a PCVR port.
It’s a beautiful game that stands out as one of the most unique VR camera ideas out there. While it may be short, it more than makes up for it in terms of gameplay and character. This is a game that is not only visually appealing but a unique take on how VR can be used in different ways.
We just wish it wasn’t so short.
Vacation Simulator / Job Simulator
Premise: Assume the role of a totally normal human as you try to learn about normal human jobs, and a normal human vacation.
Each of these games is iconic for early VR experiences, with Job Simulator being one of the first big VR-only games. They both offer a fun, dry humor style of gameplay that keeps you engaged and laughing the entire time.
If you like memes, dry and surreal humor, and learning human things like jobs and vacations, this might be a game for you. However, it’s not a particularly long game, so don’t expect to be spending insane lengths of time here.
If you want to have some laughs in a strange nearly sandbox experience, this is probably for you. The humor is stellar, and the surreal tasks you must accomplish are amusing and engaging.
While it may not be a particularly long game, it doesn’t overstay its welcome and offers an endless mode, but sadly there isn’t a lot of replayability.
No Man’s Sky
Premise: An infinitely procedural universe with nearly infinite planets and solar systems to explore.
While it may have had a fairly rocky start, No Man’s Sky has become a fantastic game, and with all of the free massives updates the game regularly gets, its no wonder how it made our list.
You’ll never run out of things to do in this game, as the universe you’re in is massive, on a “Minecraft World Size” scale. While most of the game is usually spent on foot, there are vehicles you can build to help you traverse these worlds easier, and the spaceflight is fun.
Those who love survival games like Minecraft or ARK will enjoy this, as its the only AAA title in this genre with native VR support. It offers an infinite amount of things to do, but you might find yourself in moments where seated VR doesn’t add to the experience.
Premise: Do you love board games and tabletop games? Do you wanna play complex behemoths like Gloomhaven without needing an engineering degree to get it back in the box? Oh, and did we mention this is in VR?
Those who are a fan of modern board games know all too well about how powerful Tabletop Simulator has become in the industry. The game has offered a VR implementation for quite a while now, and while it may not be perfect, it still does a great job.
However, with the complexity of some modern board games today, and the significant lack of buttons on a VR controller compared to a keyboard make some games difficult or impossible to play. There are just too many buttons in some mods.
If you really enjoy modern board games, or you just want to play Uno with your friends, Tabletop Sim is stellar. Yet, it doesn’t do well with incredibly complex games, so don’t go overboard with them. The community of Tabletop Sim is extremely active, and new games get added all the time, sometimes from the developers themselves.
Trover Saves The Universe
Premise: Imagine something similar to Moss, but instead of a beautiful story of woodland creatures, it’s Rick and Morty humor by one of the creators of the show.
If you want a laugh and a pretty decent action-platformer, Trover Saves The Universe does a pretty stellar job. You, the silent protagonist, help an alien named Trover recover your lost dogs in order to stop the big bad evil guy.
Yeah, the plot isn’t going to win an Emmy, but it does keep you laughing. Of course, since the style of humor is so close to Rick and Morty, some may want to skip this title. It’s funny, but not for everyone.
If you liked Moss or weren’t interested in the visuals, Trover Saves The Universe is a great substitute. The comedy never stops, and the gameplay is engaging, while still knowing not to overstay its welcome. It isn’t a game for everyone, but it’s worth a try.
Premise: Gloomhaven in VR! Or, more like a VR version of a turn-based strategy RPG with board game elements.
Demeo is one of the most unique games on our list. It’s stylized as if you were playing a Dungeons and Dragons session in a VR game, with no dungeon master. I had a blast playing it, and it’s even better with friends.
The solo play is a little tough, as there can be a lot going on at once. I would guess that the game was balanced around co-op over single-player mode, but maybe that’s just me. However, the board game theming is stellar and it truly is a fun, unique game.
RPG lovers and board game lovers will enjoy this game, but hardcore gamers probably won’t care for this. The gameplay is fun, but it isn’t particularly deep or complex, and playing with friends is way more fun.
Getting Back In The Saddle
VR has come a long way in the last five years, starting with mostly stationary or seated experiences. Today we have a plethora of games to choose from that allow you to use the full space around you to play, and these relics of yesteryear have been tossed to the wayside.
However you feel about seated VR experiences, some of these gems paved the way for today’s VR games, and are still games with active communities to this day.
How do you feel about these seated VR games? Did we miss one? Let us know in the comments below!