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VR gaming was designed to transport the player from outside the game to the inside. You don’t just feel like a third person holding the controller, you become part of the character and physically simulate what happens in the game. But, what if I told you that you can make VR gaming more immersive? If that rings a bell of excitement in your ears, keep scrolling down to learn how it can be done.

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

Black male playing with Meta Quest VR (Photo credit: Pexels/Shvets Production)

Back in the day, most games were either top-down or side-scrolling. However, over time, 2.5D and 3D games were born. The latter in particular redefined gaming forever and continues to evolve to this day. In the world of 3D gaming, there is the third-person view and the first-person view.

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The first-person view created the entry point for VR gaming. For those who may not be familiar with the concept, a third-person view is when the entire body of the main character is visible on the screen. First-person view, on the other hand, is when only the hands (and sometimes the feet) of the main character are visible on the screen.

VR games are designed in such a way that your body becomes the invisible body behind the screen—if that makes sense. It literally throws you into the character you are playing with. But how do you enhance the immersive VR gaming experience so that it doesn’t feel like you are still outside the game but inside?

Interesting facts about VR gaming

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

Teenagers in a VR game setup (Photo credit: Pexels/Tima Miroshnichenko

While VR games are more commonplace now, it will interest you to know that the first VR device dates back to 1991. However, the research into VR goes way back. The first time that the word virtual reality was used was in 1987 by Jaron Lanier, the founder of the Visual Programming Lab (VPL). Lanier coined (or popularized the name) “virtual reality” and developed a series of VR gears including the Dataglove and EyePhone head-mounted display.

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By 1991, virtual group arcade machines started popping up and were accessible to the public. Visitors would wear VR goggles and play games on the machines. However, it was not until 1994 that The Sega VR-1 was born and, for the first time, made it possible for VR gear to be used at home. You can follow the rest of the history here.

The modern VR era started with the launch of the Oculus Kickstarter project by Palmer Lucky in 2012. Two years later, Facebook acquired Oculus. Suddenly, VR became a hot topic. In the same year, Sony announced the PSVR. Both Oculus and PSVR remain the key players in the VR gaming market to this day. Between 2016 and 2017, a slew of VR products launched into the market including the HTC Vive.

While modern VR gears have been more successful than their predecessors, their adoption is still slow. According to a Statista survey, around 51.1 million VR headsets have been sold in the last 5 years. Around 65% of those sales happened between 2021 and 2022. In 2021 alone, around 14.2 million VR headsets were shipped, almost double the previous year.

In comparison, the PlayStation 2 sold 160 million units in its lifetime. Gaming consoles continue to outsell VR headsets by a lot. The slow adoption of VR gears has made many developers and publishers reconsider investing in creating games for the platform. After a disappointing sale of Assassin’s Creed Nexus VR, Ubisoft said it would reconsider investing in VR games. Sony also announced that it was halting the production of PS VR2 because it had a huge backlog of unsold products.

5 Accessories You need to create the most immersive VR gaming experience

While prepping this post, I went through different forums to see people’s ideas for creating an immersive VR gaming experience. On Reddit, I saw lots of crazy ideas. However, the one thing I discovered was that all the suggestions were merely bits and pieces of creating an immersive VR gaming experience.

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What I mean is that most of the suggestions were mostly limited to one device. However, getting the most immersive VR gaming experience goes beyond just one device. It is achieved through the combination of various devices—depending on the genre of games you play anyway. Below are the must-have accessories to optimize your VR experience.

#1. VR Headset

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

You cannot be talking about a VR gaming experience without a VR headset. It is the window to the virtual reality world. As I mentioned earlier, there is a vast number of products on the market. However, when you want to pick, the most important factor to consider is the size of its game library.

Some VR games are hardware-specific, meaning they may not work on some VR headsets. Sony’s PS VR and Meta Quest are two of the most popular and widely compatible VR headsets on the market. If you are a console gamer transitioning to a VR experience, I highly recommend PS VR2 because it will work with your PS5 console.

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Another reason why I will recommend it is because of its steadily growing library of games. It is also a natural pick for those who are sold on AAA gaming. Nevertheless, here are other VR headsets that you can consider when making your choice.

  • Meta Quest 3 (large library with over 500 immersive app support including games, fitness, wellness, entertainment, and social experiences)
  • HTC Vive Pro 2 (5K resolution with 120Hz refresh rate. Compatible with SteamVR Tracking)
  • Valve Index VR (the most futuristic VR headset with the most advanced controllers that tracks every finger separately with an experimental 144Hz refresh rate)

#2. Racing wheels and pedals

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

If you are a fan of racing sims, the first thing that you will realize is that playing with a VR controller doesn’t bring the experience home. The most immersive VR gaming experience for driving sims can only be achieved using physical wheels and pedals that actually make it feel like you are inside the racing car.

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Racing wheels and pedals allow you to feel every turn, tension, acceleration, and brake of a racing game. By covering your gaming chair with a haptic feedback gaming pad, you will also feel every bump and vibration on the road. There is a sea of racing wheels and pedals on the market. However, the Logitech G923 comes highly recommended. Other racing wheels that are highly ranked include:

  • Thrumaster TMX racing wheel (features force feedback and is highly compatible with Xbox Series X|S and PC)
  • Thrumaster T300 RS (best compatibility with PS5, PS4, and PC. Features 1080-degree force feedback)
  • Logitech G29 (features real force feedback and is highly compatible with Mac)

#3. Haptic Vest

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

AAA gamers will naturally get attracted to FPS (first-person shooter) games when using a VR headset. You will find a lot of them if you are using PS VR2. One of the ways to create an immersive VR gaming experience when playing FPS games is by using a haptic vest.

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Haptic vests allow you to feel all the hits you take in the game, “physically”. Whether it is a gunshot or an arrow or a slash of a sword, the vests translate them into physical impacts on the exact part of your body where you took the hit. This feeling further helps you to feel like a character in the game rather than a separate person outside the game. One product that comes highly recommended is TactSuit X40. However, it works mostly with PC and Meta VR products.

#4. Gamescent

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

Gamescent (Photo credit: Will Greenwald)

Gamescent is a box that translates audio into scent. The device is placed where it can see what is happening on the television or monitor. The device uses AI to capture the sound from the game and release a scent that corresponds to the sound and visuals—that’s pretty wild, right? It is even hard to explain. It is one of those things that is better experienced than told.

For example, if you are firing a gun, the AI detects the sound of the gun and releases gunpowder scents. As the smell trickles into your nostrils, it starts feeling as if you are present where the gunshot is happening.

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Gamescent is equipped with scents that closely replicate gunfire, explosions, racing storms, and forests. The developers are also working to make additional scents available including blood, fresh-cut grass, ocean, and big city. It is a wild experience that I wish every VR gamer could have once in their lifetime.

#5. Omni One

How To Create The Most Immersive VR Gaming Experience – 5 Must-Have Accessories

When you think of an immersive VR gaming experience, think of an accessory that allows you to walk and run in a limited space and have those actions directly translated into the in-game movement of your character rather than just using buttons to move your character around. Omni One launches the era of full-body immersive VR gaming experience.

Developed by Virtuix, Omni One features a 360-degree treadmill that allows players to run and walk around the in-game virtual world, crouch, and control their characters in ways that were not previously possible. On March 13, 2024, the company announced 35 titles that will launch with Omni One later this year including Ghostbuster: Rise of the Ghost Lord.

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“The high caliber of our launch games showcases how Omni One will take virtual reality to the next level,” said the company’s CEO Jan Goetgeluk in the announcement. “We are proud to partner with so many award-winning studios and offer our users an exceptional selection of games that will redefine their gaming experiences.”

When on a limited budget, you can go for a VR Mat like Proximat Metaverse Portal. While this will not move like the Omni One it allows you to know when you are moving away from the safe area and at risk of hitting something. In other words, it restricts your VR gaming experience to a safe area.

How immersive do you want your VR gaming experience to be?

The growth of VR gaming has been slow but is projected to continue growing slowly. The essence of creating VR games is to make the player become the character rather than just feel like they are controlling the character. So, how much immersive would you want your VR gaming experience to be? How many of the products mentioned above will you incorporate into your VR gaming setup?

Remember, sound is an important part of immersion. If you are using a VR headset without dedicated headphones or one with a headphone that doesn’t deliver immersive sound, consider upgrading the sound setup in your gaming man cave. Audioengine A5+ is one product that I easily recommend.

Have you played a VR game before? What other ways do you think players can create immersive VR gaming experience? Share your thoughts with us in the comment box below.


Anthony Emecheta

Anthony Emecheta has over a decade experience as a freelance writer. Gaming has always been a childhood hobby and he is excited to be collaborating with a gaming company as a content creator. It is like having all the things he loves in one place.

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