The VR wars are just getting started. Sony announced a virtual reality headset for the Playstation 4 at the Game Developer’s Conference today, joining the Oculus Rift as a high-profile headset promising to change the face of video games and electronics. Sony Worldwide Studios president Shuehi Yoshida debuted the device at a session titled “Driving the Future of Innovation At Sony.”
This also marks one of the most important differences between Sony’s PS4 and Microsoft's Xbox One. In a certain sense, the VR headset serves as an answer to Microsoft’s Kinect — a brand new peripheral that fundamentally changes the way we interact with games. Similarly, both technologies remain mostly unproven — while VR has gained massive traction in techie circles, we still don’t know how well it will support full game experiences or mass markets. The Kinect 2.0., similarly, has yet to prove itself a necessary purchase alongside the Xbox One.
If I had to pick which one of these technologies will get the world more excited, I would definitely go with VR. I’ve used the Oculus Rift on several occasions now and the experience really is mind-bending (sometimes uncomfortably so). It’s the perfect mix of old and new — it allows the user to experience old-style games from a different perspective, as well as entirely new experiences. People have been chasing this technology for decades, but one gets the feeling that the moment truly has arrived.
Check back tomorrow for hands on impressions and videos with Sony’s headset.