PlayStation VR: 10 things you need to know ahead of October
From release date to game launch prices and everything in between
Sony's PlayStation VR release date is closing in fast. Slated for 13 October 2016, the virtual-reality headset stands to be the first mainstream VR headset to come to market. In fact, there's so much riding on its success that some are worried that if it flops the VR industry as a whole could be damaged.
Thankfully, with units expected to sell out, this doesn't look like it will be the case. in fact, there's an awful lot to look forward to in regards to Sony's VR headset, and we've laid out the ten facts you need to know about the upcoming PlayStation VR
PlayStation VR: 10 key facts to know
PlayStation VR is Sony’s first real foray into virtual reality after its various high-end, and ludicrously expensive, 3D viewers. Sony has been working on PlayStation VR for years now, honing its PlayStation Move technology to work as a tracking mechanism for a VR headset. Now, years after its initial prototypes Sony is preparing to launch its headset later this year alongside a slew of new games and the more powerful PS4 Neo.
But why should you really care about PlayStation VR and Sony’s plans for the future of home console gaming? Here’s our take on why you need to pay attention to this VR headset over the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.
1. PlayStation VR will cost £350
Sony announced that PlayStation VR will cost £350 on launch, placing it squarely within its earlier claims that it would price the unit as “a new gaming platform”.
Pricing the PlayStation VR at £350 puts it at exactly the same price the PlayStation 4 was on launch in 2013. If a PS4.5 also launches in October, it’s likely you could pick up a new PS4 and PlayStation VR for the same price as a HTC Vive headset.
2. PlayStation VR will release on 13 October 2016
During the San Francisco Game Developers Conference, Sony revealed that PlayStation VR would have a worldwide release date of October. During Sony's E3 presser, the release date was finally announced as 13 October 2016, to many woops and hollers from the audience.
3. PlayStation VR will launch with 50 titles
When PlayStation VR releases in October, it will also have 50 titles available for purchase within its launch window. Sony has stated that it’s working with more than 230 developers around the world to bring titles to PlayStation VR. It’s hard to believe these will all be big blockbuster releases, but having 50 titles to choose from on launch is always nice. We even have a list of all the confirmed games so far, if you’re curious.
4. PlayStation VR games will be full-priced titles
If you thought that PlayStation VR games would be cheaper than your average release due to the need for expensive PSVR hardware, you'd be mistaken.
Prices for some PSVR titles have gone live on the Sony PlayStation Network Store and they aren't as cheap as you may have hoped. Tumble VR is, by far, the cheapest at £7.99 and a couple of other download-only titles are a reasonable £15.99 too. However, both PlayStation VR Worlds and RIGS come in at £34.99 and £54.99 respectively – indicating that titles also slated for a retail release will still be treated as standard full-price releases.
5. PlayStation VR could come to PC
While PlayStation VR will come to PS4, and possibly PS4.5 on launch, Sony’s vice president Masayasu Ito hasn’t ruled out bringing it to the PC at a later date.
Japanese newspaper Nikkei (translated by Eurogamer) was told by Ito that: “The possibility exists [to bring PlayStation VR to PC] since the PlayStation 4 shares many of its parts with the PC. At the moment we’re concentrating on games, so I have nothing to announce at this point, but we’re looking to expand in a variety of areas.”
6. PlayStation VR looks like it comes from the future
Sporting a black, curved visor, LED-illuminated positional trackers, and a unique headband to improve user comfort, PlayStation VR genuinely looks like what you’d expect a VR headset of the future to look like. It puts both Oculus Rift’s sleek black exterior and HTC Vive’s pock-marked unit to shame.
7. PlayStation VR no longer features bone-conduction headphones
Early rumours indicated that, instead of headphones,the PlayStation VR would have bone-conduction headphones built into its headband. This has been removed in favour of standard earbuds or headphones. You can even opt to play sound from your TV if you’d rather not feel fully immersed.
8. PlayStation VR is the least high-spec of the three main VR headsets
Part of the reason why Sony’s device is so much cheaper than other VR headsets on the market is because of its lower-specification hardware. Unlike the Vive and Rift’s 1,080 x 1,200 resolution per eye, PlayStation VR features twin Full HD 1080p OLED displays (960 x 1,080 per eye) and a field of view of 90 degrees – opposed to the 100 degrees in HTC and Oculus’ devices. It does, however, have the highest refresh rate of 120Hz, although it’s believed most games don’t run at such speeds natively.
9. PlayStation VR’s breakout box doesn’t give the PS4 a power boost
Rumours suggested that Sony’s mysterious breakout box contained some form of black magic to make it work on a PS4, but this has now been revealed as untrue. In fact, all PlayStation VR’s little box does is help untangle the VR image so that it can display on your TV as normal and modify audio to work with virtual-reality environments.
10. PlayStation Move is being revived for PlayStation VR
Deemed by many as a complete failure, Sony’s PlayStation Move is coming back with PlayStation VR. If you’ve still got some of those wands tucked away in the back of your controller drawer, now’s the time to break them out and put them on charge again.
While the DualShock 4 will be the primary input method for most games, PlayStation Move should work with a lot of titles, especially those where physicality is important to the VR experience.
Click over to the next page for a list of every confirmed PlayStation VR title so far.