It’s pool. The clue is in the title really. However, apart from giving you the chance to play pool with friends (there is multiplayer included) without having to leave the house, it’s how it treats its avatars that makes this title fantastic. Pool Nation doesn’t try to create whole bodies for players. instead, every player is a floating head with a pair of hands. Think Rayman, only slightly more nightmarish. Also, you can chug a beer, throw darts and chuck bar furniture around, so you can start a bar brawl without fear of reprisals.
Quick, think of a gaming style that shouldn’t work in VR? If you thought 3D third-person platformer, that is very specific but understandable. Lucky’s Tale, however, manages to make it work. You can tilt your head around to explore new parts of the map, view your Graphics User Interface (GUI) etc. Is it a tad gimmicky? Yes, but it makes a genre that has been around for a while feel different and exciting. The best part is that it comes bundled with the Oculus Rift, so no additional purchase is needed.
Remember gravity? Ever wondered what it would be like to experience that? ADR1FT is pretty much that, but also includes survival game elements such as inventory management and needs to fill. Explore a space station in zero gravity whilst trying to collect oxygen, solve puzzles and not die. Simple enough right? As an added bonus, the original soundtrack was composed by the game director Adam Orth and Weezer, so it should draw in adults in their mid-thirties.
Trust Crytek to make something very pretty. The developers behind the original Crysis have made a climbing simulator, where you play a disembodied pair of hands and climb as you would in real life. There are even what appear to be checkpoints in the form of belay points (bits of metal sticking out of the rock to put your climbing rope in). Might not be a full simulator, but it looks like a lot of fun, and it’s gorgeous to look at.
Video games work because they are escapism at its finest. They have the potential to make us experience things we would otherwise never be able to. Eagle Flight, which is coming out later this year, is that in its purest form. You are an Eagle, and you can fly around Paris. Yes, there are multiplayer games and objectives, but really, the selling point is being able to fly like an Eagle. Even better, if you like Paris but hate Parisians (so everyone who has been to Paris), this is an alternate reality where humans have disappeared. Fantastic.