Best VR games for weight loss - what games burn the most calories?

Best VR games for weight loss - what games burn the most calories?

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Virtual reality is a powerful tool with many applications. Whether used as a storytelling device to fully engage you in a rich and detailed world, or perhaps as a way to see new perspectives and challenge your skills. There’s so much you can do with this technology. A good VR setup completely fools your senses and can easily make you forget about the world outside the helmet. However, the best part of VR technology is that it forces you to move. That can include just your arms, or even your whole body if you’re willing. You have to look around, move around, slash, stab, investigate and fight. Everything you do in-game you must physically act yourself. This means it’s an excellent way to burn calories and get a good workout. What’s great is that If you’re having fun, you won’t even notice how long you’ve been moving and shaking.

Like any video game market, the VR space is packed with thousands of varied titles, some great for sweating those calories, others less-than-suited for our desired goal. I have recently fallen down the VR rabbit hole and have experimented with dozens of top titles so I am confident in my list of best VR games for exercise and weight loss. If you’re ready to use this brilliant and fun new technology to get moving, this list is for you. 
There’s something for everyone, from titles that are specifically designed to help you shift weight, to games that accidentally provide some of the best exercise you’ll have with a headset on. 
This is my list of best VR games for weight loss.

10. Holopoint (Steam/Meta)

Holopoint VR Screenshot
Armed with a bow-and-arrow, Holopoint is a chaotic experience that will keep you on your toes. You stand in place, bow at the ready while holographic enemies surround you. You have to dodge, weave and fire with excellent accuracy to survive the trials before you. No matter how good you get, the intense levels will stay intense as you are overwhelmed with targets that want nothing but to end your run. While the archery isn’t as detailed as other bow-and-arrow games, that’s not the intent here. Holopoint just wants you to blast targets as fast as humanly possible without being skewered in the process. You’ll be spinning in place shooting at anything that moves, and I guarantee that after you finish a level, you’ll be sweating and panting. But you’ll feel great having beaten your adversaries. 

While Holopoint is a great experience that will get your blood pumping, there are a few reasons it places so low on my list. The biggest downside of Holopoint is that it encourages turning and spinning, and doing so makes it incredibly easy to get tangled up in your headset’s wire. While this can be alleviated by purchasing accessories for your specific headset that help keep the wires in place, it’s an extra step that a lot of people won’t want to take. Of course, if you’ve got a Meta Quest and stream it wirelessly to your device, this is a complete non-issue.
Another drawback is that the game feels very barebones. There’s not a whole lot of polish that’s gone into the experience and it can make the game feel less than stellar. Once you’re in the thick of the combat, all those feelings wash away, but the presentation is half of the experience, and in some places in Holopoint it’s lacking drastically. 
Holopoint is a great VR game for weight loss now and then, but likely isn’t something you’ll come back to every day.

9. Fruit Ninja VR (Steam/Meta/PSVR)

Fruit Ninja VR Screenshot
That’s right, the very same Fruit Ninja that blew up everybody’s phones in the early age of smartphones can be played in VR. As you can imagine, slashing various fruits as quickly as you will get your heart beating. The same gameplay loop of the phone game is in action here. Score well, get coins, buy new swords, repeat. Except for this time you’re not swiping at a screen, you’re physically slashing at that fruit, skillfully avoiding bombs and racking up the highest score you can. One way to think of it is the higher your score - the more calories you’ll burn!

Losing weight is a mix of a good diet and good exercise, and fruit makes an excellent cornerstone of a preferred diet. So it makes sense that playing a game that revolves around fruit would be beneficial to you*. (*Not scientifically accurate). 
With multiple modes to suit whatever you feel like playing, you can practice your fruit ninjutsu the way you want. Whether by partaking in the relaxing zen mode which allows you to just slash to your heart’s content or arcade modes that continue to up the ante until you’ve lost all your lives.

While this sounds great in practice, there’s a reason you haven’t thought of Fruit Ninja for a long time. After the initial novelty has worn off, the game can grow repetitive and is quickly forgotten about. The best workout games are ones that encourage you to keep coming back, to get stronger and better, and while Fruit Ninja VR is a fun VR game for weight loss at first, but like Holopoint before it, it won’t be long before you grow tired and find something new. Regardless, while it’s fresh, Fruit Ninja VR is a great workout that allows you to go at your own juicy pace.

8. In Death: Unchained (Meta)

In Death: Unchained Promo
Following on from my last point, the problem with exercise is that you have to do it again, and again and again for it to have any effect. While variety is the spice of life, a physically demanding game that you want to keep exploring is a brilliant and necessary way to get your heart pumping. In Death: Unchained is a rogue-lite game that sets you through biblical levels. You battle your way through procedurally generated fantasy stages where you battle against angelic and demonic beings to restore harmony to the realms beyond. The game is acclaimed for its extremely realistic and responsive bow-and-arrow mechanics. In this game, you not only fight only with your archery skills, but you move with them, too. If you fire an arrow at the ground, you’ll teleport to its position. To succeed you’ll have to be forward-thinking, position yourself correctly, and have a deadly aim.

The game reacts to how well you are doing as a player, so it’ll always be challenging no matter how good you become. You’ll unlock cool new arrows that mix up how the game plays and continue making everything feel fresh. However, remember. If you die, you’ll be sent right back to the beginning. You’ll have to do whatever you can to stay alive and reach the end of the game. Secret areas and regular updates will keep you coming back to this challenging title over and over again.

In Death: Unchained will keep you on your feet for a long time, and though it’s a brilliant game in its own right, there are better choices for VR games for weight loss. In Death: Unchained rewards slow and thoughtful gameplay. Once you get the hang of the mechanics, you’ll find yourself setting up in ideal positions and slowly picking off the enemies before you. While this feels great, it doesn’t do much in the way of a high-intensity physical workout. There’s always the chance of biting off more than you can chew, of course, but the more you play, the less that will happen.
Either way, it’s still a fun method to get some exercise - hours will pass quickly and you’ll forget that you’re even supposed to be working out.

7. OhShape (Steam/Meta/PSVR/Viveport)

OhShape VR Screenshot
The majority of VR games focus their workout on your arms, but OhShape wants you to move your whole body. You’ve probably seen the concept of this game on multiple wacky game shows over the years but put simply, you’re on a track where a set of walls quickly hurtle towards you. There’s a cut-out in the wall that you must stretch to fit through. As the session goes on, you must fold and fit through the walls faster and faster. This not only gets you moving your entire body but also gets your heart pumping as you pull yourself from one position to another. Dodging, ducking, weaving, and doing whatever you can to not crash into the walls in this VR game that is great for weight loss.

There are dozens of songs that compliment the varied levels, but what’s excellent about OhShape is that you can also import custom songs. So even if the game doesn’t officially support your favourite tunes, you can either make your own level or download somebody else’s. There’s also a dedicated workout mode that will help you burn as many calories as possible. And if you’re looking to prioritise fun over working out, there’s even a party mode that allows you to compete with friends and family to see who can score the most points for any given level.
OhShape is a fun, enthralling full-body workout that is definitely one of the best VR games for weight loss. Unfortunately, due to the nature of the game, there’s not a lot of variety to be had once the novelty has worn off. Yet, crushing fast-paced levels will always make you and your body feel great.

6. Audio Trip (Steam/Meta/Viveport)

Audio Trip VR Screenshot
If you love to dance, you’ll love Audio Trip. Created as a way to work out while dancing, you’ll be dodging obstacles, riding ribbons, and catching gems to score the most points and burn the most calories! Officially, there are a whopping 84 levels that cover the 21 licensed songs that include hits from Lady Gaga, deadmau5, and Tiesto to name a few. As to be expected, like OhShape there are custom songs and a level editor, so you can create, download and import your favourite beats and workout to them instead.

Audio Trip is on my list because of its included Cardio Mode. This mode helps get your heart beating and your body sweating. Instead of just having a one-size-fits-all mode, however, it comes in beginner, regular and expert varieties. So whether you’re starting your weight loss journey or are a keen fitness aficionado, Audio Trip has you covered. You can also set your own playlists, so you can make the perfect fitness regime for your favourite tracks and levels. There is also a range of modifiers that help keep you comfortable and mix up the experience. If you just want to dance and not worry too much about your score, you can put on the ‘no-fail’ mode. Alternatively, if you just want to vibe, you can turn off the score altogether and just enjoy the song and surroundings with the ‘scenery only mode’. Audio Trip caters to you, allowing you to dance, play and shift that weight how and when it suits you! Audio Trip is a great game for people that love to dance, but I feel as if it may not be of interest to those that prefer a more gameified experience. Thus why it doesn’t place higher on the list.

5. Pistol Whip (Steam/Meta/PSVR)

Pistol Whip VR ScreenshotYou have two guns, you have plenty of bad guys and you have a wicked song in the background. Your goal is to down the enemies surrounding you as you move down the track to the beat of the song. That’s right, this isn’t your standard shooting gallery, this is an on-rails shooter with a twist. Play through 30 fast-paced levels that will have you dodging bullets better than Neo in the Matrix. Things move fast, enemies surround you, and it’s a lot of fun to blast your way through the varied levels. New guns and customisations make the levels replayable, with daily challenges encouraging you to jump into the chaos and beat your high score regularly. You need to move a lot to do well in this game, and you will work out your entire body. Once you do well, you’ll feel incredible, like the star of your very own action movie.

Pistol Whip is an ideal VR game for weight loss because you’ll want to do better and better each time you play. It also has a party mode, so you can take turns with friends, all trying to get the best score on your chosen level.
Pistol Whip will draw you in, work you out and then keep you coming back for more high-octane bullet-flying action. The only thing that holds this brilliant game back is that it relies more on your aim than full-body movement. While that’s a huge factor and some of the crazier levels will have you panting and sweating, the other titles on this list will simply get you working harder, faster.

4. Supernatural (Meta)

Supernatural Promo
You’ll be upset to learn that Supernatural is not a game about ghosts! However, it is one of the best weight loss apps in the VR space. If you can get over the hurdle of a monthly subscription, you’ll be blessed with varied daily workouts that cater to your every need. With over 500 workouts and more being added all the time, your ideal body is just around the corner. 

There are two main fitness mechanics that most of the workouts revolve around, which are boxing and flow. Boxing tasks you with punching targets to the beat of a song. Hooking left & right, performing uppercuts, and flailing wildly to work out and strengthen those arms. Then there’s flow, which plays a bit more like an intense version of Fruit Ninja, slashing and cutting at blocks to match the rhythm of the song. There’s also a meditation mode to calm yourself and practice mindfulness before or after a workout. 
The problem with Supernatural is that it’s hard to truly call it a game. It gamifies your workout, sure, but you can’t get swept into a world and forget how long you’ve been playing. It is a weight-loss application first, and a game second. 
Supernatural is a great workout package, but unfortunately, it’s priced like one, too. While it may not be a proper game, if you’re passionate about losing weight and getting fit at home, Supernatural is one of the best VR games for weight loss.

3. The Thrill of the Fight (Steam/Meta)

The Thrill of the Fight VR Promo
It’s the Eye of the Tiger, it’s the thrill of the fight, you know the rest. 
Most boxing games are held back by arcade mechanics, but Thrill of the Fight wants to be different. Grounding itself as a pure boxing simulator, you weave, block, and punch your way to victory. There are no special moves, no crazy combos, just you, your fists, and a big guy that wants to knock you out. Boxing is a brilliant exercise that comes with a huge setback: head trauma. So, Thrill of the Fight is almost the better version of the sport seeing how you’re not taking repeated blows to your head. 

You’ll still work up a sweat as you swing wildly into the air. The Thrill of the Fight is considered one of the best VR boxing applications, and I have to agree. It’s simple, it’s clean and it’s a lot of fun. With fitness integration, you can easily see how many calories you’ve burned and how many opponents you’ve knocked out. 
If boxing is something you’re interested in, you owe it to yourself to try The Thrill of the Fight. Not only will you increase your strength and get your blood pumping, but you might just pick up a technique or two.

2. FitXR (Meta)

FitXR Screenshot
FitXR has been on the block for quite some time. For a large amount of that time, it was widely considered to be worse than its direct competitor Supernatural. Yet, today, as you can tell by it being two places higher than its rival, it turned the table. With recent updates, I believe FitXR stands now not only as a cheaper alternative to Supernatural but now packing more than the other fitness app.
FitXR specialises in having workout classes across three different styles. That’s boxing, dancing, and high-intensity interval training. They add 7 different classes every single week, so there’s always something new to try. The app includes warm-ups and cool-downs as part of the workout, so you get it all in one. As an additional welcome feature, you can virtually work out with your friends. Up to 6 friends can join you as you complete classes. So if you like being social while you sweat it out, FitXR is great for you. You can also work out with 6 strangers and compete in the session to see who can get the highest score. If you’re a competitive person that needs a little bit of motivation to push yourself harder, this is perfect for you.
Once again, if FitXR was a game proper, it would easily be number 1. However, though it puts a lot of emphasis on your score for each workout, we need a real game that’s going to give us a real workout to cap off this list of the best VR games for weight loss.

1. Beat Saber (Steam/Meta/PSVR)

Beat Saber Screenshot
If you know anything about VR, you’ll certainly know about Beat Saber. The best way I’ve found to describe it is as Guitar Hero with light sabers. Squares fly at your face and you must cut them in specific ways to the beat of thousands of songs. Downloading custom songs and levels on the Steam version is a breeze, so there’s no limit to what you can slash and cut to.
Though Beat Saber can be quite a relaxed experience on easier difficulties, when it’s cranked up to a particularly fast song, it’s a heat-racing challenge. After a few fast songs, you’ll be sweating and your heart will be thumping. 

You’re not just moving your arms, you’ve also got to duck and dodge walls that try to stop your groove. What’s great about Beat Saber is that it is a game first and foremost, so you’re meant to be having fun while you cleave like a madman. Time will fly by as you work out. Before you know it, several hours will have passed. You’ll also feel great if you clear a song with little-to-no mistakes. Like a Jedi who uses his powers to rave, you’ll feel the force all around you and will want to master your favourite songs and perfect the game. Beat Saber isn’t about getting fit, that’s just a side effect of mastering each mechanic and showing off that you are the best saber-wielder in the world. With practically limitless content, Beat Saber is something you can come back to time and time again. Even if you’ve just got 5 minutes, it’s a perfect piece of entertainment and one of the best VR games for weight loss.

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