As Sony prepares for the retail launch of PlayStation VR on October 13, joining the VR competition with Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Google Daydream VR already in the mix, early reviews generally suggest positive opinion, with some expressing reservation that, although good, it just might be too early. That said, Sony is in a good spot within the VR competition, as there are 40 million PlayStation 4 owners. The headset is also competitively priced, with PlayStation VR almost half the price compared to most of its competitors.
Here’s some early reviews of PlayStation VR ahead of it’s October 13 release. You might also want to watch the unboxing to whet your appetite and find out what comes with the package.
Sony’s entry into the world of consumer virtual reality is an impressive start but it’s not yet the affordable high-end VR experience some are dreaming of
Virtual reality is still in its early days, and it’s unclear whether it will ever catch on with people beyond gamers. If you already own a PlayStation, spending a few hundred dollars for the headgear and accessories is a worthwhile purchase to get started on virtual reality.
In the end, your purchasing decision should come down to whether you think you fit the bill of being an early adopter. Not everyone can justify spending hundreds on a peripheral, especially one that’s still in the experimental phases of delivering state-of-the-art entertainment. But if you’ve got the money to spare, and want to share in the excitement of VR’s infinite possibilities, then PlayStation VR feels like the most sensible choice.
Overall, what’s great about PlayStation VR is that it fits into a popular, user-friendly system. But that also sets certain expectations that other headsets don’t have. Oculus and HTC can ask people to set up precisely calibrated personal holodecks without a second thought, because PC gaming is already a somewhat solitary activity that goes hand-in-hand with ridiculous hardware setups. PlayStation VR’s natural habitat is an all-purpose entertainment space that you might share with any number of people, including ones who couldn’t care less about VR. Like the PlayStation itself, PSVR feels best as something you can kick back and enjoy without rearranging your living room into a VR cave.
PlayStation VR offers an incredible view into gaming’s future. But like other VR platforms, PlayStation VR will only be as successful as the experiences it hosts. What does PS VR’s lineup look like six months from now? Or a year? But considering the price compared to other high-end VR platforms, it’s a great option, especially if you already own a PS4.
The PlayStation VR is just what the fledgling virtual reality industry needs today. While the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive made headlines for being the first truly high-end VR headsets on the market, they’re held back by their cost, complexity and lack of killer games and experiences. Sony’s solution, on the other hand, starts at $400 (assuming you already own the PlayStation Camera and Motion Controllers) and works with the $300 PS4 console that’s currently in tens of millions of homes. It’s also launching with a slew of titles from major developers, with even more on the way. While the PlayStation VR isn’t as technically capable as its competition, it’s a much more sensible option. But it’s still not quite a must-buy product just yet.
But while nothing about the PSVR can be said to be better than the headsets that Oculus and HTC turned out earlier this year—other than ergonomics—that’s not what matters. Not at all, in fact. What matters is that this thing works in your living room. What matters is that it’s comfortable, immersive, and intuitive. What matters is that it invites people to see what you’re doing, even participate in what you’re doing (which it does, via asymmetric games like VR Playroom—which is free, and might just turn out to be the Wii Sports of the platform.) What matters is that, while it’s not cheap by any stretch, it’s at $400 a not-out-of-the-realm-of-possibility purchase for holiday presents, high school kids with jobs, and people who already have a PS4 and want to see what the fuss is about.