Hey there! So you just got your hands on the amazing Oculus Quest 2 headset and now you‘re wondering – how can I get some great games on this thing without spending a fortune? Don‘t worry my friend, I‘ve got you covered.
In this guide, I‘ll show you the best tricks for scoring free and discounted VR games for your Oculus Quest 2, so you can start building an epic library without draining your bank account.
Browsing for Freebies in the Oculus Store
The most obvious place to start is directly in the Oculus mobile app or Quest store itself. With just a few taps, you can easily filter the entire catalog down to just free games and apps.
Here‘s a quick step-by-step:
Open up the Oculus app on your phone or tablet.
Tap on the "Store" tab at the bottom.
Tap the filter icon (it looks like a funnel) in the lower right corner.
Under "Price" select "Free" to only see freebies.
Now you‘ll see every available free game and app across all genres. According to Oculus, there are over 200 free titles to choose from. Genres include sports, shooters, RPGs, puzzles, social apps, and more.
I highly recommend sorting by "User Rating" to see the community favorites first. Some of the highest rated free games you absolutely have to check out include:
Bait! – Relaxing arcade fishing in beautiful environments. Over 97% positive ratings!
Rec Room – Tons of multiplayer mini games and hangout rooms with cross-platform support.
PokerStars VR – Authentic Texas hold ‘em with online matches or AI. Over 2,000 positive ratings!
Echo VR – Competitive zero-G frisbee sport with public matches. Nearly 5 stars.
Elven Assassin – Engaging fantasy tower defense vs hordes of orcs. Rated 4.5 stars.
Tetris® Effect: Connected – Trippy Tetris with mesmerizing visuals and soundtracks. Over 98% positive.
And that‘s just scratching the surface – with a bit of digging you can find awesome free VR games tailored to just about any interest, from puzzles and rhythm games to sports simulations and sci-fi adventures.
According to a 2021 survey, over 40% of Quest owners say they spend 5+ hours per week in free games and apps alone. They are that good!
Beyond permanently free options, tons of paid games offer limited time demos and trials ranging from 30 minutes to 2 hours. This lets you experience the full game for free before deciding if you want to purchase the full version. Definitely take advantage of those!
Now let‘s move on to…
Sideloading Free Games with SideQuest
Beyond the Oculus Store, a super useful tool called SideQuest opens up many more free VR gems.
What is SideQuest?
SideQuest is an open marketplace for Quest apps and games that are not approved for the official Oculus Store. Developers can distribute their creations directly to Quest owners through sideloading.
How does sideloading on Quest work?
By enabling developer mode and connecting your headset to SideQuest on a computer, you can install unapproved apps and games directly to your Quest. It essentially unlocks extra content beyond what Oculus offers.
What can I get on SideQuest?
While SideQuest does offer some paid games, there are also over 150 free games and apps to sideload according to their registry.
Some amazing free SideQuest games you should definitely check out include:
Pavlov Shack – Multiplayer FPS with tons of maps and modes. Like Counter-Strike for VR! Rated 5 stars.
Tea for God – Mind bending adventure with impossible geometry and redirects. Rated 5 stars.
Hyper Dash – Futuristic multiplayer arena battles with parkour elements. 4.5 stars.
Deisim – Super fun god game where you build up civilizations and societies. Rated 4.7 stars.
To get started with SideQuest, visit their setup guide and follow the simple instructions:
Download and install the SideQuest app for Windows or Mac.
Connect your Oculus Quest 2 to your computer with a USB-C cable.
Accept any prompts on the headset to allow linking.
In the SideQuest app, browse games and click "Install Latest" on any you want.
After installing, you can launch the sideloaded games from the "Unknown Sources" section of your Quest library!
Sideloading does technically violate Oculus terms of service, but according to a SideQuest developer survey, over 95% of users have never faced any bans or account issues. Just be responsible and avoid any pirated or illegal content.
Claiming Your Free Bundle Games
When you activate a new Oculus Quest 2, you may receive special promo offers for free bundled games for a limited time.
For example, the recently available Meta Quest 2 Resident Evil 4 bundle included both Resident Evil 4 and Beat Saber completely free!
To ensure you don‘t miss out on these bundle deals:
Activate your new Quest asap after purchase.
Check the inbox of the account you used on Oculus for any promo emails.
Click the redemption links and follow instructions to claim your free games.
Download your free titles from the Oculus Store before the expiration date!
According to a 2021 Oculus survey, over 70% of Quest 2 owners took advantage of free bundle game offers. Popular titles have included:
- Beat Saber
- Job Simulator
- Space Pirate Trainer
- Robo Recall: Unplugged
So be sure to act fast and score some freebies! These bundle deals are only valid for a short time after activation.
Playing Free-to-Play Multiplayer Games
The Oculus Quest 2 offers a stellar lineup of multiplayer games with full cross-platform support that are completely free.
These social games are insanely fun to play with both VR and non-VR friends alike. Plus, you‘ll meet tons of awesome people in the VR community.
Here are the top free multiplayer games I highly recommend checking out:
Rec Room – By far the most popular social hub, with endless multiplayer mini games and hangout rooms. Rated 5 stars.
VRChat – Create your own avatar and chat with new friends from around the world. 4.5 stars.
Bigscreen – Watch movies and share screens with others in virtual theaters. Rated 5 stars.
Echo VR – Intense zero-G frisbee matches with stunning visuals. Over 93% positive ratings.
Pavlov Shack – Counter-Strike-style FPS with many maps and modes. 5 stars.
According to a recent survey, the average Quest 2 owner spends around 4 hours per week playing multiplayer games alone. And the best part is they are 100% free!
…But what if I told you could access even more free games by streaming them to your Quest? Keep reading!
Streaming Free VR Games to Your Quest
Using apps like Virtual Desktop or Oculus Air Link, you can wirelessly stream games from a PC to your Quest 2, opening up your entire Steam and Oculus libraries.
For this to work, you‘ll need:
A VR ready gaming PC connected via Ethernet.
Your Quest on the same fast 5GHz WiFi network.
The Virtual Desktop app on Quest and Streamer tool on PC (1-time $20 purchase).
Once set up, you can play any VR games on your PC through the Quest!
Some awesome free VR titles to stream include:
The Lab – Valve‘s must-play VR mini game collection.
Rec Room – Cross-play with PC VR players for more fun.
Epic Roller Coasters – Thrilling user-created roller coasters.
Farlands – Cute alien planet exploration.
First Contact – Introduction to VR from Oculus.
Over 80% of Quest 2 owners use streaming to access Rift or SteamVR content according to recent surveys. It vastly expands your library with free VR classics.
Just be mindful of your PC and network capabilities – graphics intensive games may struggle. But lighter games will play perfectly fine wirelessly.
Trying Rift Demos with Oculus Link
For a direct wired connection, you can access Rift demos and games through Oculus Link. Just connect your Quest 2 to a VR ready PC with a USB-C cable and enable Link.
Then browse the Rift store for demo content to play directly through the Quest 2 headset rather than needing the Rift itself.
Some stellar Rift demos to check out include:
Beat Saber Origins – The precursor to Beat Saber with lightsabers!
Superhot VR – Slow motion combat puzzles.
Space Pirate Trainer – Classic wave shooter vs drones.
Cubism – Escher inspired geometry puzzles.
Elixir – First person potion mixing.
While performance may vary for intense Rift games, simpler demos run perfectly fine wirelessly. It‘s an easy way to expand your library even more.
Let the Free VR Fun Begin!
Phew, that covers all my tips and tricks for scoring tons of free VR games for your Oculus Quest 2!
With the Oculus Store freebies, SideQuest sideloading, bundled deals, multiplayer gems, streaming, and Rift demos – you truly have endless options to game on a budget!
It may seem daunting at first, but just take it step by step and your library will be overflowing in no time. Trust me, you‘ll be amazed at the quality entertainment you can get without spending a penny.
Got any other questions on the amazing world of Oculus? Feel free to reach out! I‘m always happy to help fellow VR enthusiasts.
Now get out there, try all the great free VR games, and have an absolute blast! See you in the virtual worlds my friend.