VR gaming recommendations, as Meta bets big on the platform despite huge layoffs – WBUR News

Add WBUR to your morning routine

Meta, the parent company of Facebook, laid off more than 11,000 employees this month as the tech sector showed signs of slowing. But it’s still on track to spend billions on virtual reality this year.
The company doesn’t plan on turning off the tap anytime soon. So I strapped on a headset (kindly provided by Meta) to check out what’s been drawing most people to this metaverse — video games.
The Meta Quest 2’s offerings initially exceeded expectations. Years ago, I borrowed a friend’s Quest to dabble with knockout rhythm game, “Beat Saber.” It didn’t disappoint when I revisited it, this time jamming out to a new playlist from Lizzo.
Other experiences didn’t quite land. “Iron Man VR” thrilled me as I soared through the stratosphere, battling robots that attacked Tony Stark’s private jet mid-flight. But while my headset was in the clouds, my feet were on solid ground — and the cognitive dissonance left me paralyzed with motion sickness.
After an hour in Iron Man’s metal shoes, I worried that virtual reality may not be for me. But that same night, I fell in love with “SUPERHOT VR.” The game throws you into intense action set-pieces. Faceless, polygonal goons charge you with knives, hammers and guns. It’s up to you to beat them all and proceed to the next minimalist level.
But here’s the catch: In “SUPERHOT,” time only moves when you do. So as a barrage of bullets lurches toward you in slow-motion, you have precious seconds to think about how you’ll deal with each and every threat around you. You might have to throw a dog bowl at the first guy, a hammer at the next, then pick up a pistol that went flying to turn on the third goon.
It’s an experience that works out your brain and even your body, and it got me so immersed that I accidentally punched my TV and tripped over my couch. But injuries aside, it proved to me how unparalleled an experience virtual reality can be.
So with my faith in the platform restored (and with my motion sickness, over time, largely quelled), I got to try many other games for the Meta Quest 2. Here are some of my favorites for newcomers:
James Perkins Mastromarino produced and edited this interview for broadcast with Gabe Bullard. Perkins Mastromarino also adapted it for the web.
This segment aired on November 30, 2022.
Scott Tong Twitter Co-Host, Here & Now
Scott Tong joined Here & Now as a co-host in July 2021 after spending 16 years at Marketplace as Shanghai bureau chief and senior correspondent.
James Perkins Mastromarino Twitter Producer, Here & Now
James Perkins is an associate producer for Here & Now, based at NPR in Washington, D.C.
Add WBUR to your morning routine


Leave a Comment