When it comes to annual festivities, most people fall into the two camps: team Christmas or team Halloween. While some people can’t wait to decorate trees, opening up presents and breaking out the Bublé, others look forward to going all out with creating costumes, chowing down full-sized candy bars and heading to a haunted house.
Halloween 2020 was going to be amazing. Not only were there reports of a full moon expecting to make an appearance, but the holiday falls on the most perfect day - October 31, 2020 is a Saturday. However, like many birthdays, special occasions and celebrations that occurred after mid-March of this year, most of us will have to celebrate Halloween socially distant from our friends or with those in our limited social bubbles.
While physical parties may be cancelled this year, not all is lost. Fortunately, there are a variety of Halloween-themed VR games, movies, and activities that can help you celebrate this spooky season while staying safe. We’ve compiled a list of 5 things you can do to make the best out of Halloween 2020, so let’s dive right in!
1. Watch your Favourite VR Movie Titles
Perhaps you already have a tradition of watching your favourite Halloween movies. Whether it be watching the latest horror releases, rewatching the Conjuring for the 11th time, or binging Halloweentown, movies have become a huge part of the holiday. However, why not experience some of your favourite movies in full immersive 360?
The best part of VR experiences is its innate ability to transport the user into a digital environment and blur the lines of what is real and what isn’t. With the power of full immersion, watching your favourite scary titles in VR is just like the iMAX theatre experience except with the added bonus of feeling like you’re living the scenes alongside the characters. If your goal every Halloween is to get scared, VR movies are definitely the way to go. If you’re not sure with what to watch, here are a few awesome horror must-see films that will definitely help you get into the Halloween spirit.
2. Get the Latest Blair Witch: Oculus Quest Edition
For Quest users who have wanted to play Blair Witch, we have some good news for you! From the makers of Layers of Fear, Bloober Team will be launching Blair Witch for Oculus Quest users. While the original Blair Witch was created for PlayStation 4 and Xbox, this latest version was specifically built for VR and the Oculus Quest platform, bringing this psychological horror to life.
This single player game follows Ellis, a former police officer that joins the search team to locate a young boy who disappeared in the Black Hills Forest. While it starts off as an ordinary investigation, things soon take a turn for the worst as you soon are confronted by your deepest fears and a mysterious force when navigating the haunted woods. While this is all terrifying, the best news is, your character will still feature Bullet, your canine companion!
Starting today, Blair Witch: Oculus Quest Edition will be available for purchase in the Oculus store. Blobber Team also confirms Blair Witch will be released on other VR platforms in the near future.
3. Step into an Abandoned Mansion in VR
For haunted house enthusiasts, this one’s for you. While you may not be able to physically experience the haunted house this year, if you’re looking for your fix of suspense, DreamBack VR is the game for you. Unlike conventional jumpscare titles, DreamBack VR manipulates the lights, shadows and sound, creating an eerie atmosphere as you navigate an elaborate haunted mansion.
This game takes place in the Rickfford Mansion where your character is an engineer sent to fix a broken electrical line. After the frightful night, you’re left to process the fuzzy memories and nightmares from your visit to the abandoned estate. Through solving puzzles and exploring the empty building, you search for clues that will help you escape.
DreamBack VR isn’t your conventional title as its focus isn’t to overtly scare the player but to build the suspense in the environment, keeping you on your toes for the whole duration of the game. This title is now available for Steam users to download.
4. Watch The Birch on October 31
Oculus has been fantastic this pandemic season, hosting a plethora of admission-based and free events on their VR platforms, and this Halloween season is no exception. On October 31st, Oculus is hosting a binge-watch session where users can watch from start to finish all episodes of this horror series by Crypt TV.
The Birch is a 14 episode TV show adapted from the short film released back in 2016. The original short followed a highschooler who summoned an ancient being - the Birch - to protect him from a school bully. However, the show will include 3 characters and dives further into the mythological background of the monster as well as its good protective nature and it’s predatorial side. Critics have shared that The Birch is targeted at younger audiences so it will be a perfect starting point for those who may not have a stomach for extreme horror.
To learn more about this viewing event, head over to the Oculus page to learn more.
5. Enjoy Halloween with the Family
While most of what we have suggested so far is more catered towards older audiences, here’s one that can be enjoyed by everyone in the family regardless of age.
Angry Birds VR and Acron: Attack of the Squirrels has just released their latest update, revamping their game to feature a few haunting additions. Angry Birds VR: Isle of Pigs is adding a brand new gameplay - Slimy Slopes - where players will be getting 13 more levels to battle with Dr. Frankenswine and his evil minions. With now 91 levels to beat, the whole family can enjoy playing all Halloween weekend. For Acron: Attack of the Squirrels, keep your eyes peeled for Sulky Swamp, their new Halloween themed level. Players can increase the difficulty by adding bots, but be prepared for an epic tree faceoff!
Both updates are free for owners, but if you have yet to purchase these titles, Angry Birds VR: Isle of Pigs supports Oculus Quest and Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index, Windows Mixed Reality and PlayStation VR, retailing for $14.99 while Acron: Attack of the Squirrels works with Oculus Quest and PC VR headsets. It retails for $19.99 with the iOS or Android app free to download.
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