The Force is strong with these Lucasfilm-based immersive experiences.
Today is May 4th, otherwise known as Star Wars Day, an annual commemoration of George Lucas’ legendary franchise celebrated across the globe. Since the introduction of the Skywalker Saga, the grassroots celebration has exploded in popularity. What began as a simple pun has since evolved into an international spectacle celebrated by die-hard fans, industry professionals, even Disney themselves.
With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic forcing the closure of most if not all public events, event organizer ReedPop is currently hosting a two-day virtual event for Star Wars fans featuring live-tweeting “movies and episodes of both Star Wars: The Clone Wars and Star Wars: Rebels, as well as Q&A sessions and discussions with writers and voice actors associated with the franchise.”
For those looking for even more Star Wars action, may we recommend escaping to a galaxy far, far away in one of the following Star Wars-inspired VR games. For the sake of simplicity we’ve only included Star Wars virtual reality titles available to play at home, meaning no location-based experiences or AR content.
VADER IMMORTAL: A STAR WARS VR SERIES
Let’s get the most obvious one out of the way. ILMxLAB’s three-part cinematic experience is without doubt the best Star Wars content you can access on a VR headset at the moment. Taking on the role of a Force-sensitive smuggler, players travel to Darth Vader’s elaborate Mustafarean compound where they’ll embark on a dangerous journey to save the galaxy from am mysterious weapon capable of untold destruction.
Fantastic visuals and AAA voice acting come together to create a cinematic journey worthy of the legendary franchise. Add in the endlessly entertaining Lightsaber Dojo and you have one of the most satisfying sci-fi VR experiences available at the moment; albeit brief.
Vader Immortal Episodes 1 – 3 are available now for $9.99 each on Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift/Rift S. ILMxLAB today announced all three episodes will be heading to PlayStation VR this summer.
TRIALS ON TATOOINE
Before Vader Immortal there was Trials on Tatooine. Another Star Wars-based experience from ILMxLAB, Trials on Tatooine offered one of the first real bits of interactive Star Wars VR content. Set after the events of Return of the Jedi, players find themselves stranded on the desert planet of Tatooine where they are tasked with defending R2-D2 from waves of Stormtroopers while it repairs a damaged Millennium Falcon.
It’s a relatively straightforward experience, but despite its age and simplicity it remains one of the more polished Star Wars VR experiences currently available. Blocking incoming fire and redirecting it back at Imperial soldiers feels incredibly satisfying. Just being able to stand at the foot of the Falcon is fun in and of itself, let alone being able to protect your homie R2 from a flurry of lasers.
The best part is its free on SteamVR.
STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT “ROGUE ONE: VR MISSION”
Another short freebie, Star Wars Battlefront Rogue One: VR Mission has you hopping into the pilot seat of an X-Wing craft and assisting a resistance squadron on a daring rescue mission. There’s chaotic dogfights, a jaw-dropping hyperspace jump, and a slew of other exciting moments sure to put a smile on the face of any Lucas hound.
The X-Wing VR Mission is available exclusively on PSVR as a free mission for all Star Wars Battlefront owners. Despite being a free add-on designed to help market the release of Rogue One, VR Mission remains one of the more visually-impressive titles on the list.
STAR WARS: DROID REPAIR BAY
While the Star Wars universe is ripe with danger and conflict, not every hero carries a blaster or blade. Star Wars Droid Repair Bay offers a rare look at the less violent side of the Star Wars universe. Players take on the role of a standard astro-mechanic tasked with repairing BB-8 and other damaged Resistance droids amid a chaotic space battle.
This usually involves completing a series of puzzles and sequences using a select tool set. As the battle outside your ship grows closer, however, you’ll need to work quickly to get each droid back in fighting shape.
Star Wars: Droid Repair Bay is available free on SteamVR headsets.
BLADE & SORCERY: STAR WARS MOD
Okay, so not an officially sanctioned Star Wars game per say, but the VR fantasy sword-fighting game Blade and Sorcery is chock full of different Star Wars-themed modifications that will keep you entertained for hours.
By visiting a popular mod hosting site like Nexusmods, you can download a variety of weapons, enemy skins, and environments borrowed straight from the Star Wars universe. Take on old-school gladiators using an Imperial Blaster. Battle Kylo Ren with a two-sided spinning lightsaber. One modder even went so far as to develop an original Star Wars campaign set aboard an Imperial Cruiser.
To get started you’ll need to pick up a copy of Blade and Sorcery, available for $19.99 via Oculus Rift and SteamVR. Then, head to the aforementioned website and download any of the compatible Star Wars mods available for Blade and Sorcery.
Image Credit: ILMxLAB