By Eric Schaal at Wall st. CheatSheet:
Sony’s Computer Entertainment division made a splash at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco on March 18 with the introduction of a virtual reality headset for PlayStation 4. Dubbed “Project Morpheus,” the headgear will bring VR to gaming but only will only work with PS4 devices, at least for the time being. Here are six things to know about Project Morpheus, which was three years in the making.
1. Sony is officially in virtual reality gaming
Project Morpheus is a virtual reality headset for use with PS4 games. According to Sony Computer Entertainment, the head-mounted display packs 1080p resolution along with a 90-degree range of vision and 3D audio. The PlayStation camera will follow head movements and rotate to accomodate the shift with limited blurring of the user’s vision.
2. Reports of realistic effects are impressive
In describing the impact of Project Morpheus on the game “The Deep,” Kotaku noted how realistic the effect is on the user. This game simulates the experience of diving into a shark tank, which the reviewer felt may be a little too intense for the comfort of anyone who’s frightened of sharks. Of course, this same surge of terror is what gaming enthusiasts will like to hear. Life-like impacts are the stuff any virtual reality game is made on — even if they give you nightmares.
3. Morpheus is making Oculus Rift makers nervous
Anyone into video gaming will recognize the similarity to another 1080p virtual reality headset, the Oculus Rift slated for mid-2014 release to developers. According to Extreme Tech, the timing of the Oculus Rift annoucement of its delivery schedule — the day after the Project Morpheus event — suggests the smaller company fears the impact a powerhouse like Sony could have on the virtual reality front, especially when it comes to lining up developers for the project.
4. Reviewers love Morpheus
A quick scan of tech and gaming sites reveals an enthusiastic thumbs up from reviewers who tried Project Morpheus at the GDC in San Francisco. IGN Entertainment reviewers remarked on the terror sharks provoked during a demo of “The Deep” while saying Project Morpheus already bested Oculus Rift on some counts. No wonder that company is wary of Sony’s entry into virtual reality gaming.
5. All VR gaming should benefit from Project Morpheus
Sony’s Shu Yoshida told GDC attendees how much he respected the achievements of Oculus Rift, leading many in the industry to believe Sony’s Project Morpheus should help the progress of virtual reality — and thus gaming — in its entirety. Though Morpheus will not be available for PC developers to try anytime soon, the options are far from settled.
6. There is no pricing info or release date
Enthusiasts who want a piece of the action will have to wait some time before Project Morpheus makes it into the consumer’s hands. No pricing info was even suggested by Sony officials, while the only date available was “not in 2014.” Oculus Rift will make it out before then. It ships to developers in July 2014 and is expected to land in stores in early 2015.
Via Wall St. CheatSheet.