The Oculus Rift HD — a virtual reality 3D headset developed specifically for gaming — was easily one of our favorite things at E3 2013. It showed what the future could (will?) look like as games become more immersive, and was nothing short of impressive.
However, although the Oculus Rift is currently the main brand among VR headsets, we don’t expect it to be the only name. In fact, a new rumor suggests Sony is working on their own virtual reality headset, and that they plan on unveiling it at this year’s Tokyo Games Show.
According to a CVG report, this PS4 VR headset is the last piece in Sony’s marketing strategy for their next-gen console. Sony has already shown off the PS4 console, revealed a slate of launch titles, announced a price, and even provided a release date, so in essence, this VR headset announcement is more of “One more thing” type reveal.
At the moment, however, Sony is deciding whether to position the headset as an essential piece of the PS4 line — alongside the new PlayStation Camera and the DualShock 4 — or as a non-essential add-on. They actually were planning on announcing the headset at GamesCom 2013, but those plans apparently fell through at the last minute.
Now, it looks like TGS 2013 will be the place for this announcement, with Japanese gamers and media getting their first look at the next-evolution of immersive video game experiences. How exactly Sony plans to demonstrate the headset isn’t completely clear, but we do have word that the DriveClub developers have their hands on a dev unit.
That seems like a no-brainer to us, using the headset to mimic the cockpit of a race car. And not only that, DriveClub comes free with every PlayStation Plus membership.
Even if Sony doesn’t show off this new headset at TGS, though, they are poised to make a big showing at this year’s event. This would be the place that Sony would unveil, or further show-off, the titles that will appeal most to Japanese gamers. Presumably, TGS would also be where Sony announces a firm Japanese release date for the PS4.
We’ll have to wait until later this month (Sept. 19-22) to find out what exactly Sony will unveil, but the prospect of a VR headset that rivals the Oculus sounds pretty intriguing to us. However, if it can’t match the instant awe that we experienced when putting on the Oculus, it might not be worth the trouble.
[Update: GamesInternational learns that the PS4 VR headset is currently targeted for Fall 2014 release and that it may not be unveiled at TGS to avoid distracting consumers from the immediate PS4 offerings this fall. It also appears to use the PlayStation 4 eye with trackers added to the headset itself which could potentially make the unit even more accurate than the Oculus Rift.]
Are you interested in a VR headset for the PS4? What games do you think would most benefit from the peripheral?
Sony’s PlayStation 4 goes on sale November 15, 2013 in North America for $399.