I am a huge VR nerd and these are the 7 Meta Quest 3 apps I’m downloading first

Hamish smiling while playing a VR game using the Meta Quest 3, he's standing in front of a plant in a large living room-like space
(Image credit: Meta)

If your Meta Quest 3 preorder is arriving today, or you’ve been inspired to pick up the VR headset after reading our five-star Meta Quest 3 review, then you’ll probably want to dive head-first into some great virtual reality and mixed reality experiences. But where should you start?

The Meta Quest Store is full of some amazing Meta Quest 3 games and apps, but it’s also home to a few duds as well. While you might be willing to take a gamble on free software, a lot of it’s paid – and we all hate the feeling of buying a game or app we then never use.

So to help you out I’ve compiled this list of  Meta Quest 3 software that I think you’ll love. There’s a mixture of games and apps including some of my favorites from the Oculus Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro that have been enhanced for the Meta Quest 3.

Honorable mentions

This list has two quick honorable mentions. The first is for people who are upgrading from older Quest hardware and it’s ‘all the Quest software you know and love’. The Meta Quest 3 can run every game and app currently in the Quest Store, so if you have a library of VR titles already then you’ll be able to bring it with you to the new hardware. What’s more, some of those apps might be getting Quest 3 enhancements in the coming months to take advantage of the hardware’s new and improved chipset and full-color mixed reality.

The other honorable mention is Asgard’s Wrath 2. It’s not actually out yet, but by getting your Meta Quest 3 before January 27 you’ll get a free copy of it. I’ve spoken to the developers of this game and they are promising it’ll be an action-filled 60-plus hour VR AAA adventure. We’ll have to be the judge of that when it releases later this year but hey, whether it's great or not it’ll cost you nothing to give it a try so I’d recommend downloading it when you can.

First Encounters

First Encounters is a mixed reality experience that won’t keep you entertained for more than an hour or so, but it’s an excellent showcase of the Meta Quest 3’s MR capabilities and a great place to start for newcomers.

After you’ve booted up the app and scanned your room a tiny spaceship will crash through your ceiling. A flood of “pesky space puffians” will then start invading your room, and it’s your job to zap and collect as many as you can before time runs out. The puffins invade by breaking through your walls and ceiling from their reality, but you can blast these holes open yourself to expose more of their homeworld and make it easier to zap the critters and build up a high score.

Multiple fluffy colorful puffians bounce around a living room asd a spaceship crashes through the wall exposing another dimension.

(Image credit: Meta)

It’s a clever use of mixed reality, and for people new to VR or MR it’s a fantastic introduction – the mechanics are super simple, and because you start in your own home it doesn’t feel as alien as starting in a completely virtual environment.

Walkabout Mini Golf

If you own a VR headset (be it a Meta Quest 3 or any other) you need to download Walkabout Mini Golf. It's my favorite VR experience and I'm certain you'll love it too.

The premise couldn’t be simpler – it's literally just mini golf – but Mighty Coconut's execution is perfect. Not only are the mechanics on point, but the levels are superb with unique designs that are a delight to play in (imagine if themed mini gold courses were taken to the extreme). I love every level, but Tourist Trap (a pirate cove) from the base game and the Upside Town DLC course are my favorites. 

If you ever want to take a break from golfing you can search each level for 18 unique hidden balls that you can add to your collection and use in-game. Find 10 balls (or score below par) and you'll unlock the course's Hard Mode. Not only is it now nighttime, but the course will present you with new challenges including a foxhunt puzzle that rewards you with a unique club design if you can solve it. If you get stuck you can set up a multiplayer game and try to solve the puzzles and find the hidden golf balls together.

Painting VR

If you’re looking to get creative on the Meta Quets 3 then go no further than Painting VR. There are a bunch of excellent VR painting apps, but my go-to is this one for its simplicity and beginner-friendly feel.

Using a wide array of painting supplies you can let your creativity run wild as you attempt to bring beauty to the blank canvas before you. You can make your art as large or as small and intricate as you desire. And if you need some inspiration there’s a floating browser that allows you to explore YouTube and Google for images and painting tutorials.

Best of all if you make a huge mess you can clean everything up at the push of a button. 

It also has a mixed reality mode so you can turn any room in your home into an art studio. The mode looks really good on the Meta Quest 3 – good enough that I had a proper go at painting a real-life vase of flowers (you can see the results on our TikTok in the coming days) – though your MR studio does have a habit of rearranging itself which can be more than a little frustrating.

That said, I really love this app and it's an excellent use of VR and MR where the only limitation is your imagination.

The Last Clockwinder

Fans of puzzle games need to play The Last Clockwinder. Even if you aren't a big fan of this genre you should give it a try – there’s a reason this VR app has won numerous awards, including Meta’s Best of Quest: Best Game of 2022 award.

Using a pair of gloves left behind by your former mentor – the so-called Last Clockwinder – you must help restore power to the clock tower to prevent it from sinking into a vast ocean, and hopefully find out where the missing Clockwinder has gone. 

You can think of this title as a very involved auto-clicker. Using the gloves you’re able to record movements that are then exactly mimicked by an automaton and repeated in a loop. And with the help of a small army of these robots, you’ll be able to complete this VR game’s fruit-harvesting-based puzzles. If you find VR movement a little tricky you use as many robot creations as you need to get the jobs done, but with the right blend of creative thinking and dexterity you can attempt to complete each level’s bonus objectives – which require you to be as efficient as possible with your robot usage.

I had an absolute blast playing this game and it’s a great one to pick up on your new Meta Quest 3.

Samba de Amigo

I didn’t think I'd like Samba Di Amigo but after a week of playing it on the Meta Quest 3 I’ve fallen in love with Sega’s absolutely unhinged VR concoction that’s also quite the workout at higher difficulties.

As music notes fly towards you in both virtual and mixed reality environments you must shake your maracas and strike poses to rack up points to make the maracas gods happy – at least I think that’s the narrative; I’ll be honest I accidentally skipped the opening cutscene so I’m not 100% sure, but I can say my lack of understanding doesn’t detract from my enjoyment. I think the mysterious weirdness of it all only makes the game more exciting frankly.

The tracklist is also a bit all over the place in a wonderful way – and basically, none of it fits the ‘Samba’ brief the title loosely promises. There’s the usual range of pop tracks you expect from party dance games such as Carly Rae Jepsen’s I Really Like You, The Jonas Brothers’ Sucker, and Ariana Grande’s Break Free. Then there are covers of the Macarena, La Bamba, and others that kind of barely fit the Latin origins of the maracas. And finally, you’ll find Sonic Adventure’s Escape from the City and Bon Jovi’s You Give Love A Bad Name.

If you want something more normal then Beat Samba scratches a very similar itch and is a VR staple for good reason. But if you’re after something that’s sure to make you laugh (and amuse anyone who watches you play), then Samba Di Amigo VR is a must-play Quest 3 title.

YouTube VR

Using the VR app on my Quest headset is one of my favorite ways to watch YouTube videos. The HD videos are displayed on an absolutely massive virtual screen – it’s literally vision-filling – and by signing into your account you can get personalized recommendations and a feed of the latest uploads from the channels you’re subscribed to.

The room you’re watching in is a little imposing – it’s a dark void-like space – but I kind of like how it’s free from distractions so you can focus your attention completely on the videos. 

What’s more, you can use the app to explore immersive 360 video content that immerses you in the action (though it’s not as immersive as a good VR game).

Best of all the YouTube app is completely free to download, so there’s no reason not to give it a try.

Dungeons of Eternity

If you’re looking for something a bit more action-packed, then you’ll want to try Dungeons of Eternity. The physics-based combat is exhilarating, and the graphics look great on the Quest 3.

Armed with a few basic weapons (at least until you find better ones) you must venture into randomly generated dungeons to fight a mix of monsters; you’re on a quest to find a way to survive an incoming cataclysmic event that threatens your home and salvation lies somewhere within these halls you roam. As you explore you’ll discover treasures that can upgrade your armor and weapons loadout allowing you to explore further and face off against tougher foes.

You don’t have to go it alone however, if you know a few other people who have a Quest VR headset you can join a multiplayer game and battle through the dungeons together.

The only knock against this VR title is that it is a little more involved than some of the other apps in this list. If you’re new to VR then you might want to get used to it before diving into this experience – but once you’re ready to give Dungeons of Eternity a go you’ll be in for a treat.

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Hamish Hector
Senior Staff Writer, News

Hamish is a Senior Staff Writer for TechRadar and you’ll see his name appearing on articles across nearly every topic on the site from smart home deals to speaker reviews to graphics card news and everything in between. He uses his broad range of knowledge to help explain the latest gadgets and if they’re a must-buy or a fad fueled by hype. Though his specialty is writing about everything going on in the world of virtual reality and augmented reality.