Consumer VR is finally here with this week’s release of the Samsung Gear VR. If you’ve never owned a Gear VR (there’s two previous ‘innovator editions’ out since last year) but you’ve managed to get your hands on a pre-ordered headset and compatible phone, you’re ready to plug into the world of virtual reality. But what do you download (and buy) first?

You’ve un-boxed your shiny new consumer Gear VR headset, you have your fully charged compatible Samsung Galaxy smartphone plugged in, you’re ready to get your VR on. Here are the first 6 things we think that every curious new Gear VR owner should try first.

Oculus Social Alpha

Make sure to have your headphones in for this one, because Oculus Social Alpha plops you down in a home theater environment—complete with floating cartoon avatar head—and lets you connect with up to 4 other people for shared viewing of streaming content of Vimeo and Twitch. While you may not necessarily be into either streaming platform, the ability to connect, and really see the next step in long distance communication.

  • Cost: Free
  • Gamepad: Not required


So you’ve had your Gear VR for less than 2 days (or you’re staring into the dark heart of your tracking email) and you want to spend the rest of your life in VR. Well, Netflix can help with that.

Although viewing Netflix content in your plush mountain chalet (really, you watch Netflix on a couch in a chalet environment) is a solo act for now, we can see Netflix getting a lot more social in the coming months. But for now, you’ll have to binge watch all of your favorites on your personal screen.

  • Cost: Free to download – Netflix is advertising a free 1-month trial
  • Gamepad: Not required

See Also: Samsung Launches Gear VR Headset in the US, Coming ‘Soon’ to Europe

Smash Hit

You’re in the future now, so why not pick a game that makes you feel like your in the future too? Smash Hit does all this and more with its slick style and engaging first-person gameplay that has you flying through an impossible universe of rotating glass barriers that you must shatter with an inventory of metal orbs before crashing straight into them.

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More than once I found myself holding up my arms in futility, desperately trying to protect my beautiful face from slamming into a pane of thick glass.

  • Cost: Free
  • Gamepad: Not required

See Also: ‘Smash Hit’ for Gear VR is a Futuristic, Glass-breaking Gaze Shooter

Oculus Arcade Beta

You have a destiny to become the greatest retro gamer on the face of the Earth. It’s too bad arcades are few and far between in 2015. But now with Oculus Arcade Beta you can relive all the classic games of yore from Sega, Bandai Namco, and Midway Games. Titles like Joust (1982), Pac-Man (1980), and Sonic the Hedgehog (1991) await you in your own personal arcade.

  • Cost: Free download – Each game is free for 20 minutes – prices from $0.99 to $2.99
  • Gamepad: Required


You’ve seen the freak out videos of people in VR screaming bloody murder on YouTube. Well, this is what they were raving about.

You’re in a dungeon with a torch and a map, and if you’re like me, that’s when the niggling voice in the back of your head begins to pipe up. “Why don’t we play something, I don’t know, that isn’t going to make me shit my pants?”

You’ll encounter indescribable beasts and other ghostly appiritions that stalk you through the long, dark hallways of god-knows-where. To top it off, Dreadhalls has puzzles, mysteries,and a whole lot more we don’t want to spoil.

  • Cost: $4.99, free demo available
  • Gamepad: Required



Vrse wants to move you, and move you it shall. It hosts content like Evolution of Verse, the platform’s first photo-realistic CGI-rendered 3-D VR film, and the emotionally intense Clouds Over Sidra, a 360 look into a Syrian refugee’s daily life in Zaatari refugee camp.

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A number of videos in the Vrse catalog made their first debut at the Sundance film festival, and all of the content is up to snuff to pass off to any VR skeptics in your vicinity.

  • Cost: Free
  • Gamepad: Not Required

Stay tuned for in-depth game reviews and news coverage on the first consumer VR headset to hit the market.

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  • JoeD

    If you don’t have Anshar Wars on here you’re missing the best game on Gear VR.