One of the best aspects of virtual reality is sharing the experience with friends, whether online or right in your living room. No matter the VR system you're using, these are the best multiplayer titles available now.
This article was updated December 4, 2016 with a bunch of new, fantastic multiplayer VR games for you and your friends to play together!
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is the perfect game for a large group with only one VR headset available. One of you gets behind the lenses, taking on the role of a bomb-defusal expert. It's up to your friends to consult the manual and tell you how to defuse the ticking package.
This game requires some very clear communication and the ability to stay calm under pressure — your friends with the manual can't see what the bomb looks like. Because the defusal manuals are readily available online, all you need is one copy of the game and you're ready to go. Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is available for Rift, Gear VR, Vive, Daydream, and PSVR.
What can be said about Minecraft that hasn't already been said? This mega-hit that sets you down in an infinite world of blocks where it's your job to do pretty much anything you want. Survive off the land for as long as you can, or jump into creative mode and let your imagination take shape.
Truly stepping into Minecraft — i.e. through a Gear VR or Rift — is a real trip. Sit directly behind the eyes of your character, or if you're a tad prone to motion sickness, enjoy cinema mode for an enormous screen in front of you. Either way, you're going to fall in love with Minecraft all over again. Note that Rift players can join Gear VR players thanks to cross-platform capabilities.
Raw Data is a game that we at VR Heads keep coming back to. You're tasked with uncovering some nasty secrets at Eden Corp. that mostly revolve around some shady practices involving murderous, intelligent androids. Everything, from the gunplay to the graphics to the action, is nearly perfect.
We wouldn't blame you if you stuck with single player, but once you get a taste of multiplayer, it's hard to go back. The Vive's built-in microphone makes it easy to communicate with teammates, which is absolutely essential in later levels. If you've been looking for a VR game with near infinite replayability, this is it.
Elite Dangerous had a bit of a rocky start — chalk it up to a lack of variety — but has since turned the corner thanks to attentive developers and tons of feedback from rabid fans. What you have now is an enormous online (single player is also available) game that focuses on exploring billions of planets, mining resources, trading resources, upgrading your ship, and fending off enemies.
Feel like giving your life's time to a higher power? You definitely have the opportunity thanks to a nearly infinite explorable world and the option to do whatever it is that pleases you.
If racing games are your thing, Driveclub VR should definitely be in your library. You get over 80 cars to unlock and race against your pals on over 100 tracks. Yes, there is a single player mode, but once you race against real intelligence, you'll be hard-pressed to return.
Driveclub VR's graphics look great, the cars handle realistically, and you actually feel like you're inside the cabin, hands gripping the wheel. Don't wait too long to get this game — the leaderboards get more competitive by the hour.
The HTC Vive has plenty of shooters, but when it comes to military simulation, none come close to Onward. The developers took their time designing a movement system that is easy to control and won't make you sick. This isn't however, the most impressive part of the game — the gunplay in Onward is as close to real gunplay as you'll find in any VR shooter.
If team-based games are your thing and you love the idea of a first-person shooter, Onward should definitely be at the top of your list.
Pool Nation VR
Do you miss the days of smoke-filled pool halls, you and your friends hanging out, sharking newcomers? Pool Nation VR aims to recreate that exact scene thanks to its incredibly immersive properties and spot-on control system. Hone your skills against AI, then visit an online pub for some serious competition. While you're not playing pool, enjoy some darts and get up to mischief, stacking bottles and knocking them down with a pool ball.
A version of Pool Nation VR was also released for PlayStation VR and is available for download under the title Sports Bar VR.
Rec Room is like a bunch of games in one. Best part? It's completely free. Chill with your friends in the locker room where you can talk about anything you want, or jump into one of five separate activities, including paintball, 3D charades, disc golf, paddle ball, or dodgeball.
If you find someone you like while you're playing, give them a fist bump and they'll join your party. This is the multiplayer game for all HTC Vive owners.
Hover Junkers is really a beautiful game, and it's a shame the player-base is waning. Despite it becoming increasingly difficult to join a lobby, it's still one of the best multiplayer experiences out there.
Your job is to collect scrap and fix up your ship, fending off others with the same objective. There are 17 ships to choose from and a ton of weapons to use, so get busy finding out which one you like best. Here's to hoping Hover Junkers doesn't disappear completely.
How about a five-on-five battle, medieval combat-style? Try your hand at Valiant, the cross-platform early access game that puts you on a horse, throws a helmet on your head, and gets you jousting on horseback. Yup, that's a thing now. And it's ridiculously fun.
Strategize with your team via VOIP (and use it to trash talk your opponents). If motion sickness has been a problem for you with other games, start Valiant in Comfort mode; it gets you used to the view with a helmet and the maneuvering required for fighting on horseback. Once you've got the hang of it, Valiant is rewarding and will keep you coming back for more.