Dream team: Modders behind Half-Life 2 VR, Doom VR join forces for licensed Quest ports

The front of the Meta Quest 3 headset with a BoboVR M3 Pro head strap installed
(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • VR marketing firm Impact Reality has formed a new VR development studio with VR modders from Flat2VR and Team Beef.
  • Flat2VR is a modding collective responsible for unofficial VR ports of Half-Life 2, Outer Wilds, and Firewatch. 
  • Team Beef is another modding group responsible for Doom VR, Quest 3 VR, Half-Life VR, and other classic games.
  • Flat2VR will release its first licensed port in late 2024 or early 2025 on official platforms like Quest, PSVR 2, and SteamVR.

On Monday at GDC 2024, VR marketing company Impact Reality XR founded a new VR studio for an unannounced VR port. This might not be newsworthy by itself, but the talent and history behind Flat2VR Studios have us extremely optimistic about what this could mean for VR gaming.

Flat2VR Studios will "collaborate closely with top developers from the VR modding scene to bring officially licensed VR ports of popular flatscreen games to a wide audience, offering a fresh, immersive dimension to beloved titles," Impact Reality's press release reads.

The new team includes Holger Frydrych (Cabalistic) — who developed mods for Half-Life 2, Portal 2, Crysis, Far Cry, and other classics, as well as a popular VR performance toolkit — and Raicuparta, the modder behind unofficial ports of Outer Wilds, Neon White, Firewatch, and Stanley Parable. 

Along with these Flat2VR devs, the studio now includes Team Beef, the modders who brought several all-time classics, such as Half-Life 1, Doom, Tomb Raider, Jedi Knight II: Outcast, Prey, and Quest 3, to the Meta Quest via sideloading.

These modders will now turn their talents and experience to "their first licensed VR game port," due out in late 2024 or early 2025. 

"There is a tremendous appetite to experience cherished games in an entirely new way with virtual reality," said Elliott Tate, a Flat2VR founder and Impact Reality partner. "With Flat2VR Studios, we're thrilled to work directly with the best developers to create official, high-quality VR versions of hit titles, available directly on VR storefronts such as Meta Quest, PlayStation VR2, and Steam."

The last part of that quote has us most excited. Dedicated PC VR fans can access VR mods for most popular Steam titles, but playing them on Meta Quest 3 requires sideloading and a VR-ready PC — too many hurdles for most people. We'd hoped the PSVR 2 would deliver more AAA games with VR ports, but it's proven disappointingly light on games one year later. 

Flat2VR Studios has team members who've spent years lovingly recreating flat-screen games into VR ports. If they can begin releasing official ports on par with Resident Evil 4 VR or Myst VR that you can buy without jumping through hoops, then the Meta Quest 3 could become a new home for classic games, given fresh life with a new dimension. 

Since Meta still hasn't released its promised GTA: San Andreas VR port, we'll have to count on Flat2VR Studios to add more retro magic to the list of the best Quest games.

Michael L Hicks
Senior Editor, VR/AR and fitness

Michael is Android Central's resident expert on fitness tech and wearables, with an enthusiast's love of VR tech on the side. After years freelancing for Techradar, Wareable, Windows Central, Digital Trends, and other sites on a variety of tech topics, AC has given him the chance to really dive into the topics he's passionate about. He's also a semi-reformed Apple-to-Android user who loves D&D, Star Wars, and Lord of the Rings.

For wearables, Michael has tested dozens of smartwatches from Garmin, Fitbit, Samsung, Apple, COROS, Polar, Amazfit, and other brands, and will always focus on recommending the best product over the best brand. He's also completed marathons like NYC, SF, Marine Corps, Big Sur, and California International — though he's still trying to break that 4-hour barrier.