Just like in any other field, technological progress is also a constant within the video game world, with new gadgets, add-ons, systems and concepts being added all the time. The overall evolution of gaming is about to get a big boost however with the emergence of many great honest-to-goodness virtual reality headsets coming onto the market. Each one of these wonderful devices offers gamers the opportunity to experience their games like never before. Finally, we’ll be able to actually (virtually) step inside our favorite worlds and actually feel what it’s like to know be standing there in the moment, courtesy of full 360-degree viewing mechanisms.
Needless to say, this is a very exciting time to be a video gamer. Nevertheless, with a number of VR systems out there the question then becomes “which one is best for me?” After all, you probably aren’t going to purchase every single unit, right? We’re about to look at the three examples which you should keep your eye on. Whichever one you ultimately decide to go with is of course, up to you…
Sony’s VR headset – aka, “Project Morpheus”
At first glance of Sony’s VR prototype it would appear that everything’s basically done. Even though those working on the project are still uneasy saying that it’s “still early” in terms of development, the outward appearance of Sony’s VR headset seems to indicate that they’re essentially done and ready to release.
Nevertheless, insiders like PlayStation Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida are extremely excited and anxious about what this emerging technology means for the gaming world en masse. According to him, everything’s still in its infancy, and the true potential of VR tech won’t be implemented for up to around a decade. However, he does go on to state that when it finally does land it will be what 3D open-world gaming was to the PlayStation 1, meaning that it will essentially rewrite all the rules and alter the way both gamers and developers approach everything.
For Sony, there’s no substitution for research and development, and they’re more apt to put the project through its paces so that it will be able to deliver an absolutely stunning final product. Assuming that they’re successful, you can expect any emerging Sony VR system to be extremely desirable.
The Oculus Rift
No one could have possibly predicted that the Oculus Rift project would go on to spur a 2 Billion $ Facebook acquisition and/or ignite a firestorm of development within the video game world. On the other hand, if you’ve had an opportunity to actually check out what the Oculus Rift headset can actually do, you might have indeed seen all of this coming. In short, there’s a good reason that the Oculus people are garnering such attention from everyone – their project is progressing nicely and for all intents and purposes it appears that they might end up being the frontrunner once the VR revolution officially starts. Those involved are totally committed to the Oculus project and were even forward-thinking enough to create a dev kit (currently the 2nd iteration) for prospective game creators (and that’s absolutely critical if you really think about it). If you’ve ever wondered what it might be like to take a trip into the “holodeck” (of Star Trek fame), the Oculus Rift is inching us all closer to experiencing a taste of that reality, virtuallyspeaking, anyway.
Valve’s virtual reality headset
Last but certainly not least we have Valve and their VR headset project which seeks to challenge Oculus’ reign and perhaps even undercut the consumer costs of the technology across the board. According to incoming initial reports, things are looking extremely promising for the Steam folks, with no less than 15 different demos having been set up already for public exhibition. Just how impressive is Valve’s product, you ask? According to those who’ve already had a chance to check it out, it’s at least, if not more amazing than anything else that’s currently out there. For instance, an unnamed source that actually demoed the prototype was quoted as saying that Valve’s VR headset system is “lightyears ahead of the original Oculus Dev Kit.” Can’t wait for Virtual Reality gaming? Why not get yourself a Oculus Rift Developers Kit and start playing now?