The sad truth about space is that the majority of the human race is unlikely to be able to go there, but thanks to the best PSVR space games, PlayStation owners can get a little closer to viewing the Earth from afar – or dogfighting in its atmosphere, or much further afield.
While there are plenty of passive VR experiences, who doesn’t love the idea of barreling through space, looping around colossal capital ships, or exploring far-off planets and locations? Especially when it’s so easy to set up your room for VR, so you won’t have to report any problems to Houston.
PlayStation VR has become an excellent platform for newcomers to VR, with Sony’s headset offering a lot of unique features while remaining affordable… as long as you have the PlayStation console to go with it. In any case, the company remains the only first-party console manufacturer with a VR platform (no, Nintendo Labo VR doesn’t count). That means PlayStation VR offers a vast number of titles you won’t find anywhere else, so our best PSVR space games list has plenty of room to grow.
If you're keen to game outside of the PlayStation ecosystem, check out our guide to the best VR headsets for your PC and other devices. We also have a list of VR headset deals, to help you save money on your next purchase.
1. No Man’s Sky - Best PSVR space game
- Release date: August 8, 2016
- Developer: Hello Games
No Man’s Sky is perhaps best remembered for its troubled launch, but it’s hard to overstate just how much the game has changed since 2016, which is why it’s on our best PSVR space games list. From new graphical updates to base-building and multiplayer freighters, it's grown into a vast space playground with new sights on every planet.
One of the most impressive of these free updates was a PSVR patch that converts the entire game into your very own galaxy. Now players can strap on a headset, explore planets, and then transition to spaceflight in one fluid take-off before landing on a space station and chatting to other players.
There’s nothing quite as expansive in VR, and with so much to see and do, you could feasibly buy No Man’s Sky and never pick up another PlayStation VR game again. Plus, since the VR mode doesn't silo off, you can pick up wherever you left off on your TV at any time.
2. Star Wars: Squadrons - Best PSVR Star Wars game
- Release date: October 2, 2020
- Developer: Motive Studios
Speaking of games fully playable in VR without needing additional modes, Star Wars: Squadrons is the game millions would've dreamt of years ago when watching Luke Skywalker turn off his targeting computer and blow the Death Star to bits.
While many would argue Star Wars space sims hit their peak in the nineties with the likes of X-Wing and TIE Fighter, Star Wars: Squadrons feels like it follows a natural through-line from those classics.
Unlike Star Wars Battlefront’s standalone X-wing mission, which felt like a concept game, there’s an entire campaign here that tells both sides of the conflict we’ve seen play out a million times. Except for this time, you’re in the pilot’s seat.
Whether it’s rotating in your chair to see your R2 unit beeping and whirring behind the cockpit or simply completing the tutorial by maneuvering a TIE Fighter between massive Star Destroyers, there’s a sense of scale and perspective that feels wholly unique. That's only added to by looking around the hangar and taking in the size of each Starfighter. Star Wars: Squadrons is truly a dream come true, earning a spot on our best PSVR space games list.
3. Star Trek: Bridge Crew - Best PSVR Star Trek game
- Release date: May 30, 2017
- Developer: Red Storm Entertainment
If your fandom falls closer to Star Trek than Star Wars, rest assured there’s plenty of fun to be had in VR for you, too. So, of course, we've included Star Trek: Bridge Crew as one of the best PSVR space games.
Star Trek: Bridge Crew is set during the J.J. Abrams franchise revival and has players filling four different roles on the U.S.S. Aegis, a new Starfleet vessel. Tasked with visiting Klingon-occupied space, cooperation with your fellow crew members is essential.
If you’re a captain, you’ll issue orders and be the only person to see the mission objectives. Helm officers on the other hand are, in essence, the ship’s pilots – pushing the titanic vessel through space. Then there are tactical officers in charge of the Aegis’ firepower and the engineer to manage power distribution and repairs.
If the thought of getting a group of four players with VR headsets together sounds exhausting, don’t panic; Star Trek: Bridge Crew allows for AI teammates if you want to adventure solo, but also allows multiplayer without VR. Then, once you finish the campaign, you can take part in some fun randomly generated missions.
4. The Persistence - Best PSVR space horror game
- Release date: May 21, 2020
- Developer: Firesprite
If the idea of Starfighters, co-op, or exploring distant universes isn’t quite intimate enough for you, then perhaps The Persistence is worth a look.
Curated to be part of our best PSVR space games, this atmospheric horror title has players sneaking through an abandoned ship in the year 2521... only it’s not entirely abandoned. In fact, the people on the ship are still there, but they’re now horrific mutated monsters that are looking for you.
As a clone of the ship’s security officer, your task is to sneak by all the nasties and get the ship working again. If you fail, a fate worse than death awaits. That’s because The Persistence is a roguelike, so once your consciousness travels into a new body, you’re ready for another attempt.
Entirely playable in VR, The Persistence is utterly terrifying. You can even ask friends to control the ship’s AI via a phone or tablet to help, or hinder, your progress.
5. Astro Bot Rescue Mission - Best PSVR space game for kids
- Release date: October 2, 2018
- Developer: Team Asobi
After the first-person horror of The Persistence, it’s nice to have a third-person platformer to make you feel warm and cozy – and Astro Bot Rescue Mission is happy to oblige as one of the best PSVR space games.
A precursor of sorts to PlayStation 5’s bundled tech demo Astro’s Playroom, Astro Bot Rescue Mission sees the lovable robot hunting for his crew across a series of planets after the destruction of his ship.
While a platformer may sound like a strange choice for a VR title, developer Team Asobi plays with perspective to keep players guessing. A straightforward platforming section, for example, might feature a secret platform if you look straight down.
It’s not just Astro that’s involved. Like a drunk uncle at a party, the game is constantly getting you to join in with the fun, blowing flower petals with the PSVR microphone to create new platforms, dodging enemies by tilting your head, or even headbutting your way through them.
With a whole host of collectibles to find, enjoyable boss battles, and tight, simple controls, it’s an ideal first foray into VR for youngsters – but it’ll bring a smile to the face of experienced gamers, too.
Get the Space.com Newsletter
Breaking space news, the latest updates on rocket launches, skywatching events and more!
Space.com is the premier source of space exploration, innovation and astronomy news, chronicling (and celebrating) humanity's ongoing expansion across the final frontier. Originally founded in 1999, Space.com is, and always has been, the passion of writers and editors who are space fans and also trained journalists. Our current news team consists of Editor-in-Chief Tariq Malik; Editor Hanneke Weitering, Senior Space Writer Mike Wall; Senior Writer Meghan Bartels; Senior Writer Chelsea Gohd, Senior Writer Tereza Pultarova and Staff Writer Alexander Cox, focusing on e-commerce. Senior Producer Steve Spaleta oversees our space videos, with Diana Whitcroft as our Social Media Editor.