Sony focused on the PlayStation VR during their E3 Press Conference today, with a solid amount of titles scheduled to launch by the end of 2016. Games like Thumper, Batman Arkham VR, VR Worlds, Harmonix Music and Final Fantasy XV are all expected to take advantage of PlayStation VR, among over 50 other titles.
With competitive headsets such as the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift reaching totals of up to $1150 in Canada, of course we would like a cheaper headset without any compromise. The PlayStation VR may be just that, a cheaper solution for those wanting to break into Virtual Reality. What’s better, the headset is very lightweight and easy to operate with their “one size fits all” mentality. Besides being incredibly comfortable to wear, I didn’t feel that headphones obstructed the use of the PlayStation VR, another great point for functionality.
My only real complaint with the PlayStation VR headset is the field of view, which I believe is quite a few degrees less than it’s competitors. While I can complain about this, I feel that for an entry level Virtual Reality headset, it’s the perfect one for gamer’s to just jump in and enjoy.
The games I played during the press event were Harmonix Music and Rigs. Harmonix Music was meant to be a relaxing experience, where you choose from a library of music and paint in 3D space whilst listening to your favorite track. Wanting to challenge this ‘Relaxing’ experience, I chose to listen to Metallica’s Battery and painted our site’s logo with relative ease. Using the PlayStation Move controllers, I was able to control my brush in complete 3D space, in 360 degrees. Better yet, the wide variety of options you can select, from paints that react to the music, to ‘loopers’ which consistently pulsate, I was able to make something I was particularly fond of. Unfortunately, I was unable to take any pictures of the actual demo, but I can assure you, it was a work of art. This was an amazing experience to try out in Virtual Reality, and I hope it’s something that Harmonix plans to launch this October.
Rigs on the other hand was a robot-fighting game produced for a Virtual Reality experience. The object of the game is to collect these spheres and then dunk your robot into the center of the map to score points. The game is set up as a sport, and you utilize your robot’s weapons to kill other robots as they try to score points. While the game isn’t really an exciting experience, even with me explaining it – The game’s fun factor gets multiplied with Virtual Reality due to the weapon reticule bound to you looking around. The real VR moment for me was when I dunked the robot and fell several feet. It felt real, almost like if you were to fall in a dream. You get that heart-sinking feeling that you are about to absorb a lot of force from falling to the ground – however without the pain. It was surreal, and I would love to experience more of the game when the PlayStation VR launches this Fall.
PlayStation VR is scheduled to launch on October 13th, 2016 for a MSRP of $399.99 ($499.99 Canadian).