Dead Second is the perfect after-work VR shooter for Meta Quest 3

Dead Second is the perfect after-work VR shooter for Meta Quest 3

A top-rated VR shooter is leaving Early Access. Time to check out the shooting gallery called Dead Second for Meta Quest.


Developer Spunge Games recently announced that Dead Second will be leaving Early Access in Meta's App Lab on June 27th and will be released as a full version in the official Horizon Store. In the finished VR game you can expect new levels and enemies, more abilities and optimizations for Meta Quest 3.

This should make Dead Second even better than it already is. After all, the title has received a near-perfect five-star rating in the App Lab since its launch. But what makes this shooter so special? I donned the Quest 3 and went to the VR shooting gallery for you.

An old-school arcade shooter

Dead Second is immediately reminiscent of classic arcade shooters such as Time Crisis or Virtua Cop, and the developers have obviously drawn inspiration from these games. Each level consists of several areas where you can only teleport between fixed points. But at least you can change them at will.

A screenshot from the VR game Dead Second shows the player engaging in a firefight with crooks in an alley.

If you pull off a particularly fast kill streak, the thugs standing next to you may be impressed and look horrified. | Image: Spunge Games

Each position provides cover, sometimes more, sometimes less, protection from the enemies that rush in. If you hold down the B-Button, blue, green, or yellow figures will appear to show you the available teleport positions. They will also indicate whether you can stand or kneel there. The latter is often the better choice, as you usually have more protection when crouching.

Once you are spotted by one of the roaming baddies or make yourself known with a well-aimed shot, the action begins. Dead Second is as simple as it is effective. You must eliminate all enemies before moving on to the next area — nothing more, nothing less. The levels are varied and take you through subway stations, warehouses, and office complexes.


In between, you will find a few additional interaction points, such as the familiar exploding barrels or little hearts to replenish your health.

High score hunt and John Wick action in VR

The goal is to shoot all the bad guys as accurately as possible while taking as little damage as possible. Headshots and stylish combo hits will quickly boost your high score.

You earn money with each completed mission, which basically just consists of getting to the end of the level. When the gun is empty, you eject the empty magazine downward with the joystick and reach over your shoulder for a new one. The reloading process always worked smoothly and accurately during my playthrough — that's how it should be!


You can use the reward to buy weapons of varying power in the shop — everything from the Dessert Eagle to the Uzi is included — or you can invest the money in glove and weapon skins if you want to personalize your equipment.


Good old bullet time

The enemy AI makes a solid impression and doesn't just run around mindlessly. Some gangsters are smart enough to wait until you change position or come out of cover.

A screenshot from the VR game Dead Second shows the player firing two firearms at a drone.

The hectic drones flying around require a steady hand. | Image: Spunge Games

The fast-flying drones can be especially annoying. You need a steady hand, or you can use Dead Second's special feature: bullet time. Once you have loaded the appropriate bar, you can slow down the time by pressing both joysticks at the same time.

This is especially useful if you are facing a numerical advantage, if you are running out of ammunition in a hectic situation, or if you just want to shoot some gangsters in style. Conversely, you can also dodge their flying bullets in true Matrix style.

My verdict on Dead Second

Dead Second is a fun arcade shooter for in-between games, without a lot of bells and whistles. It doesn't do anything new, but does an excellent job of implementing the tried and tested. The most important gameplay elements are well-thought-out, become second nature after five minutes, and you can shoot your way through the levels like John Wick.


The weapon handling is very precise, the guns pack a real punch and the enemy AI is comprehensible. Overall, however, a little more enemy variety would have been nice. The levels are compact and varied, so you shouldn't get bored during the five to ten minute missions.

If you like to go to the VR shooting gallery after work to blow off some steam, Dead Second is a near-perfect arcade shooter for your Meta Quest.

Sources: Meta Horizon Store