As they promised last month, Sony held a news conference to officially launch their new VR experience, PlayStation VR.
Last month when Valve and Occulous were making waves by taking pre-orders and announcing their pricing a lot of us where wondering where Sony was in all of this with the VR set. With spring and summer release dates respectively for those two there was a thought that Sony might fall behind, not to mention the hefty price tags of $599 and $799, being third to the market might be a death sentence.
Well, that third to the table death sentence might be premature since Sony’s PlayStation VR is coming in a friendlier $399 price tag and has a release date of October. That news gets even better when you realize that you don’t need a $1500 PC rig to run this, as in it’s name all you need is a PlayStation 4.
However, there is a small catch (you knew there would be one didn’t you) the headset does not come with the PlayStation Camera and Move Controllers, both of which are required to use the headset. Sony’s reasoning behind this is that they figure most of their customers already own them?
Really Sony? The Move was such a hit last generation you think people already own it this generation? Also do you not remember how much people freaked out about Xbox One shipping with Kinnect? I’m almost certain less than a quarter of your install base owns these two features. There will be a VR bundle sold but Sony didn’t release any details on that just yet. One would assume that this bundle will include both the camera and Move but could also include a PS4 as well so who knows. However you can get the camera for $60 retail (Amazon currently has it at $44) and I assume the move controllers are the PS3 ones since I couldn’t find any PS4 ones and they are between $30-40 themselves, so you’re roughly looking at an additional $150 bucks here.
The Specs for the PlayStation VR are not as impressive as the Vibe or Occulous but should get the job done on a $400 console as compared to a $1500 PC rig. It has a 5.7 inch OLED Screen which will display games up to 120 frames per second, 1920 x RGB x 1080 (which means the full spectrum of RGB pixels), and will have 9 LEDs for head tracking with a promise of only 18 millisecond latency, which really won’t be noticeable.
Sony is also promising 50 games to be released between launch and the end of the year, including a special Star Wars Battlefront VR games (or expansion?) which will be exclusive to PlayStation VR.
Even with the lower specs I can see PlayStation VR being the leader (for this year at least) in the VR market since the buy in will be so much less than it’s competition. That and the fact there are more PS4 in homes than gaming rigs that can handle the other more beefier sets should put Sony in a good place in the VR market. But we’re assuming that VR catches on (which I’m not 100% sure it will).
So there you have it dear reader, the last of the big 3 in VR has released its price and launch. What do you think? If you don’t have a PS4 will this push you to get one or are you looking for a bigger VR experience with the Rift or with Valve? Let us know in the comments below.