Google Cardboard is an excellent way to get into the world of VR gaming. It’s inexpensive and chances are that you have an Android device that you can use for it. Because of this, you can grab a ton of excellent content to see what the fuss is all about. We admit, it’s definitely no HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, or PlayStation VR, but it’s can still be a lot of fun for how little money it costs. VR is transitioning to Google Daydream right now. We have our best Daydream games linked up just below if you want something a little more recent. Thus, Google Cardboard doesn’t get the love it once did.
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Price: Free / $1.67
Flats is definitely one of the most colorful VR games out there. It’s a FPS game that lets you play both single player and multiplayer. You wander around a map and try to kill people. Your bullets also bounce off of stuff and it just looks cool to watch. You’ll need a controller of some sort to play. There is also Android TV support if you want to go cross-platform. You can also cloud save so you can switch devices if needed. It’s exceptionally fun to play and relatively inexpensive to pick up.
Minos Starfighter VR
Minos Starfighter VR was one of the first really decent VR games for Google Cardboard. It also used to be called End Space VR for those who may remember that one. It’s a space shooter that puts you in the cockpit as you take on various bad guys in outer space fights. The game essentially lasts forever and you’ll be pitted up against stronger waves of enemies as you progress. You’ll also have access to ship upgrades, scoreboards, hardware controller support, and some of the best graphics of any of the VR games out there. It’s relatively inexpensive and contains no in-app purchases.
Price: Free / $2.49
Hardcode was one of the first good VR games out there and it’s still one of the better shooters available. It features a third person perspective and the camera is controlled by the player’s head movements. You can play single player missions or online multiplayer and this is one of the few VR games that feature an online multiplayer mode. The only caveat is that the game requires a game pad and you won’t be able to play without one. It’s free to download and the most expensive in-app purchase is a paltry $2.49.
InMind VR and InCell VR
InMind VR is one of the most popular VR games to date. It’s an arcade shooter where you traverse the neural pathways of the brain looking for physical abnormalities. Once you find them, you neutralize them to make the brain healthy again. It uses runner mechanics and you’ll be on a predetermined path for the entire game. You’ll also have the option to play with or without a VR headset if you want to and the game doesn’t require a game pad to play. It’s also completely free with no in-app purchases. The developer has a second game called InCell VR that is just as good as this one.
Price: Free / $9.99
TrinusVR isn’t a VR game on the face of it, but it does let you play VR games. The general idea is that you can use this to play PC games. Here’s how it works. You’ll connect your device to your PC using this app. It then uses head tracking and integrates it directly into the game that you’re playing. The game is then streamed to your headset which emulates a VR experience. This gives a pseudo-VR experience that is actually fairly unique. Things can be a bit jumpy when you’re actually using it, so be sure to use the free demo first to make sure your system and device can handle it!
Voxel Fly VR
Price: Free / $3.99
Voxel Fly VR is an endless runner title that puts the thrill of the run right in your face. In this game, you’ll be flying through an endless city while avoiding traffic and various obstacles to see how far you can go. It has leaderboards so you can compare with friends to see who can make it the furthest. You’ll also get various difficulty modes, a 2D mode, support for game pads and various control schemes, achievements, and support for a wide variety of Cardboard variants. It’s fairly intense which makes it a great experience for VR and it’s completely free to play.
VR Controller isn’t actually a VR game but it can help you play them. How it works is you use this on an old or unused device and it turns that device into a Bluetooth controller. You can then use that controller on VR games that require one (like many on this list do). It was developed for the Samsung Gear VR but the developers claim that it supports Google Cardboard and other Android-powered VR headsets as well. It’ll run you $3.99 but we urge you to try it out quickly so make sure that it works before the refund time runs out.
Price: Free / $5.01
VR X-Racer is an infinite runner game where you’re tasked with avoiding obstacles while traveling very quickly. You’ll get points for things like near misses and hitting blue rings that appear in your path and your goal is to get the highest possible score while traveling as far as possible. It’s relatively simple compared to some other games on the list. However, it does give you the option to play with a game pad or with head tracking as your controller. It’s free to download and play with the in-app purchases accounting for upgrades like no advertising.
Whispering Eons is one of the few good free Google Cardboard games. It’s an adventure game with space opera and puzzle elements. Players move and interact with various elements of the game world to solve puzzles, talk to people, and figure out the story. The cut scenes are actually quite good and the game play is above average. It’s only about an hour long and we think it should have been longer. However, it’s difficult to complain much about a free game. It works best with Google Cardboard and similar VR headsets. However, there is an optional 3D mode to play without one as well. This is about as good as it gets for a free game.
Wrong Voyage VR
Wrong Voyage is a hybrid between a puzzle game, a platformer, and there are even some FPS elements baked in. You’re playing as someone who has discovered a strange ruin and your job is to explore it. You’ll use your weapon to make platforms move about and you’ll have to safely navigate the terrain without falling off. The game should work on most Cardboard variants along with other Android-powered VR headsets. About the only caveat is that you are required to have a Bluetooth controller in order to play the game. Otherwise, it’s completely free to download and play. It’s worth noting that this developer has four other VR games that are also pretty decent.
If we missed any of the best VR games for Google Cardboard, tell us about them in the comments!