VR Games

PC VR: Hard-hitting sci-fi shooter comes to virtual reality

Josef Erl
A former PS5 exclusive game is released for PC and can soon be experienced in virtual reality thanks to a VR mod.


A former PS5 exclusive is coming to PC and will soon be available in virtual reality thanks to a VR mod.

It's one of the most breathtaking and hardcore games Sony has ever produced: Returnal was released in April 2021 as one of the first exclusive games for Playstation 5. On February 15, 2023, PC gamers will also be able to enjoy the hardcore rough-and-tumble shooter - and not only that: a VR mod was announced right after the PC launch.

Tough and beautiful: Returnal is coming to VR

Returnal made a name for itself after its launch on the PS5, largely due to its high level of difficulty. The third-person shooter challenges players with a rogue-like system embedded in a time-loop mechanic.

The mysterious planet Atropos is breathtakingly beautiful and deadly at the same time. | Image: Housmarque

Protagonist Selene returns to the alien planet Atropos after each on-screen death at the time of her arrival. Except for a few upgrades, all progress is lost. Players are left with only the knowledge of how to survive the randomly lined up level sections.

In my review of Returnal (tips), I died a thousand deaths. However, my fascination with the stunning and mysterious atmosphere of Atropos remains to this day. Sony's exclusive development studio, Housemarque, has created a mesmerizing and deadly game world, reminiscent in design and atmosphere of Ridley Scott's Alien films.

Implementation with new universal VR mod

Now PC gamers can dive into this world and soon Atropos will be explorable through VR headsets. The modders from Flat2VR announced a VR mod for Returnal right after the release of the PC version.

Like the recently announced VR mod for Hogwarts Legacy, the implementation will be done with Praydog's upcoming universal VR mod. According to the developers, almost any title created with Unreal Engine 4 or 5 can be converted to 6DOF VR.

First demo video of Returnal VR

A first test video shows Selene in the usual third person view. In the final version, however, the camera perspective will be freely selectable. Players will be able to move it closer to the protagonist or even play in first-person perspective.

The extended field of view in VR could be a big advantage for gamers. In the arenas, you need to have an overview. Projectiles come at you from all sides, and you have to dodge them at lightning speed. As excellent as the fast gameplay is on conventional screens, it could be uncomfortable for inexperienced VR players - keyword: motion sickness.

You can control Returnal in VR with a conventional gamepad as well as with VR controllers. Mouse and keyboard are also supported. It is not known when the VR mod will be released. But it should not take long.