Our Favorite VR Films of 2016

2016 was a great year for virtual reality.

Behind our headsets, with the volume on high and our depth perception in question, we traveled to foreign landscapes, both real and fictional; re-lived historic battles; danced to a Beastie Boys-inspired concert in Hell; and witnessed Mother Nature in full, terrifying force. It was a wild ride, to say the very least.

In honor of the past 12 months — and in eager anticipation of the 12 to come — we’ve compiled our 10 favorite pieces of virtual reality content from 2016.

They’re not in any particular order; these are just the videos we feel best represent the diversity, and potential, of the VR medium. (That being said, we love discovering new VR content — if there’s something we missed, please let us know!)

With that, we’ll raise a glass high — and pull our headsets down low — to a kick-ass year in VR.

Here’s to being bigger and bolder in 2017.


EDEN, ‘drugs’

This VR music video, by EDEN, will send you on a visual journey and tickle all your senses. Chills guaranteed.

Invasion!

Invasion!, the award-winning VR animation (narrated by Ethan Hawke), is as adorable as it is visually stunning.

Pentatonix, ‘Up on a Housetop’

Pentatonix. As LEGOs. In VR. Enough said.

The Lion Whisperer

Discovery VR takes us into the wild with Kevin Richardson, also known as the “lion whisperer,” as he wrestles — playfully — with fully-grown lions.

War Knows No Nation

This haunting VR experience, produced by World of Tanks, brings us on a front-line journey across the USSR, USA and UK during World War II.

Mr. Robot

Elliot Alderson, the lead character of USA‘s ‘Mr. Robot,’ has a lot on his mind. This cinematic VR film gives us a small glimpse into it — and it’s just as weird as you’d expect.

Volcanoes: An Immersive Experience

This jaw-dropping VR journey takes us all up into the business of an exploding volcano. Lava bombs included.

Paranormal Activity: Seance

This recently unearthed 360 footage was found in an abandoned garage in San Diego — and it’s scary AF.

For My Son

This documentary VR film, from RYOT, introduces us to a young Syrian man restarting his life in Amman, Jordan. He has a message for his young son: Challenge the misconception that refugees are a burden.

‘Kids,’ OneRepublic

This feel-good music video, by OneRepublic, was captured in a single take. The choreography, which involved more than 100 people, is impeccably precise — and the song ain’t bad, either.