Just as we predicted in our gaming trends of 2014 list, the Oculus Rift is making headlines week after week this year. With Valve standing in Oculus Rift’s corner, it seems like the headset has a fighting chance to make virtual reality much more than just a passing, gimmicky trend.
As we move closer and closer to a time when gamers will have high-quality, affordable VR tech in the comfort of their own living rooms, both game developers and consumers are starting to consider what kind of games will deliver the most exciting virtual experiences. Space flight sims like Star Citizen may be getting the majority of the attention and speculation, but fantasy RPG fans now have something to look forward to, as well.
The original creator of iconic MMO EverQuest may be busy raising funds for his own MMO on Kickstarter, but that doesn’t mean the franchise isn’t still trying to reclaim the MMO throne it once held. If the possibility of visiting a revamped, updated fantasy universe in EverQuest Next doesn’t make MMO players immediately look up from their WoW or Guild Wars 2 end-game characters, perhaps the confirmation of Oculus Rift support will.
During a Reddit AMA, a fan asked Sony Online Entertainment President John Smedley about Oculus Rift support for EverQuest Next and the studio head had the following to say…
“In some way shape or form… Probably for no other reason then it’s really damn cool and programmers love that stuff”
It certainly doesn’t sound like a major priority for the development team, but it is exciting to know that some aspect of the game will offer VR support. In a followup question, Smedley also addressed the possibility of VR support options from some of Oculus Rift’s competitors.
“Hearing good things about 2 competitors… one of which actually comes from Sony. so I’m thinking this is real and we may have our Snowcrash after all.”
Although SOE has shared some of the high-level ideas and plans for EverQuest Next, it’s still far too early to determine how much of a chance the game has in the current MMO market. If it launches with substantial Oculus Rift support and without a subscription fee (as planned) then it just might have a fighting chance against TESO and the other MMO top dogs.
That said, Oculus Support alone won’t be enough to sell the MMO. We are definitely excited to see how VR support would look in an MMO, but unless it is part of the primary gameplay, then we don’t imagine anyone will be committing to a lengthy MMO just to experience occasion use of the headset.
Would Oculus Rift support be enough motivation for you to switch from one of the current MMOs to EverQuest Next? Sound off in the comments.
EverQuest Next entered alpha testing on January 31, 2014. There is no official release date for the finished product yet.
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Source: John Smedley