It’s official— Sony is moving into the realm of virtual reality with the PlayStation VR. The product is up on Sony’s PlayStation website, scheduled for release sometime in 2016. Here’s what you really want to know about it. Let’s digest all of the basics so you’re prepared for Sony’s upcoming VR headset.
What You Need
To use the Sony PlayStation VR, you’ll need the PlayStation 4, the PlayStation Camera, and one of the new VR visors. You’ll control the game using your PS4 controller, as usual; although there are rumors of other possible control mechanisms coming in the near future.
On the practical side, the PlayStation VR will feature HDMI and USB interfaces for necessary charging and connections.
What You’ll See
It’s hard to describe something that only exists in Sony’s secret R&D labs and testing facilities, but according to the information Sony has released, you will feel as if you are really, truly inside the game. You’ll be viewing a 5.7-inch 1920xRGBx1080 resolution OLED display. That means unbelievably crisp detail and rich colour. The screen broadens your field of vision and is designed to keep motion clear and accurate, eliminating blur.
The visor includes a highly sensitive accelerometer, plus a gyroscope. It can tell when you move your head, and it reacts almost instantly. That allows the game to move with you as you naturally turn your head to see what’s around you— or behind you.
What Others Will See
PlayStation VR will present two different kinds of images— one on the TV screen and another that displays for those wearing the visor. That way, everyone can still participate in the gaming fun, even if not everyone has a headset. We’re betting that there will be some VR envy going on in that scenario. If others have visors as well, they can be networked to join the game.
What You’ll Hear
In a word— everything. You’ll hear what is above, below, and around you, in crisp, clear 3D audio. Every footstep, every growl. It should be terrifying and amazing at the same time.
What Might Be Coming
Sony has apparently filed a patent for digital gloves, of a sort. It’s hard to imagine what the final product will look like, how it will feel to use it, or how accurate it will be. How durable will the gloves be, especially with excited gamers waving them around blindly? We assume that once they are released, Sony will issue a warning only to use the headset and gloves in a clear area, with no other people or objects in the way. In all seriousness, a piece of technology that can read your hand movements and translate them naturally and instantly to the digital world in your headset is truly amazing.
What You’ll Pay for It
There’s no official price range yet, but Sony did mention that the Oculus Rift pre-order price tag of $600 was high; so fans can hold their breath for something a little more affordable. Still, it’s likely that such an advanced piece of tech, if it lives up to promises, will cost a few hundred at the very least.
How You’ll Feel About It
Watch some of the YouTube videos of users trying out virtual reality headsets. Judging by their expressions, it’s incredibly exciting and a lot of fun. Are you looking forward to the new PlayStation VR?