PSVR2: Everything You Need To Know Before Buying
The release of the Sony PSVR2 is less than a week away and if you're still on the fence about whether or not to get your hands on one we've done the hard work for you and found all the information you need to decide - is the PSVR2 worth it?
First off let's take a look at Sony's complete breakdown of this impressive piece of engineering.
Sony's VR history
Sony's history with virtual reality and head-mounted wearables spans further than we'd expect with their first piece of kit released back in 1997 called The Sony Glasstron, this then acted as inspiration and a basepoint for all following units The Sony HMZ-T1, HMZ-T2, HMZ-T3, PSVR and and now the PSVR2.
The PlayStation VR device we're all most familiar with was worked on under the name "Project Morpheus" and was released back in 2016 for a tidy price of £349/$399/€399, it could be used with the standard Dualshock 4 controller, the PlayStation Move controllers or the PlayStation VR Aim controller. The overall reception of the PSVR system was positive with a huge benefit being that in order to play with the PSVR all you needed was a PS4 whereas other systems around the time all required more high-end PC's.
As of 19th February 2017 sales for the PSVR system exceeded far beyond any of Sony's expectations with 915,000 units sold in its first year but it wasn't long until later that same year in June 2017 they surpassed 1 million units sold. Figures continued to boom and by the beginning of December 2017 that number became over 2 million units sold along with 12.2 million games, as of 31st December 2019 that number had climbed to over 5 million units.
Virtual Reality has come a long way and it's got us questioning our old theory of is VR gaming dead?
PSVR2 Specs and details
Time for the important part - what specs will you be getting for your money and is it worth it? When you take a look at the specs of the PSVR2 compared with the specs offered by the MetaQuest 2 it clearly outshines the popular VR headset, most notably the PSVR2 boasts a greater resolution per eye, larger field of view and up to 120 Hz refresh rate compared to the 90 Hz offered by the MetaQuest 2. One aspect which makes the MetaQuest 2 more appealing to gamers is the lack of any need for cables or wires, or even a console, the PSVR2 needs to be connected to a PS5 via a cable and where this may appear to be an inconvenience to some, the long cable which connects to the rear of the headset isthe key to the higher performance and specs offered by the PSVR2.
As they touched on in the breakdown video the team behind the PSVR2 have truly listened to feedback from the original PSVR, previous complaints of the headset being uncomfortable to tighten have been addressed by making the front of the headset soft whereas the back is firm, this along with the front band being cleverly built in sections rather than one solid piece allows a certain amount of flexibility to aid in comfort for long hours of wearing the headset.
Another section of the headset that has been cleverly engineered is the light shield, for this integral piece they collected data of different head shapes around the world and the nose portion of the light shield has two layers preventing light from coming in for those with different nose sizes.
What games can I play?
If you're one of the lucky ones set to get their hands on a PSVR2 on launch day then you'll be spoilt for choice with the large offering of day one games coming to the PSVR2.
The Horizon games featuring Aloy have been a huge success for Sony so it's no surprise they're bringing the Horizon world to virtual reality, arguably one if its "prettiest" games full of intricate details and fascinating machines it's the perfect environment to explore in the safety of VR.
Some stand-out games for us include Star Wars: Tales from Galaxy's Edge, Resident Evil Village and After the Fall.
The Controllers and other accessories
Along with the headset the controllers coming with the PSVR2 have had a complete overhaul since the PSVR days and the move controllers. Known as the Sense controllers Sony are claiming the new orb like design will offer a *high degree of freedom* and that the shape offers zero constraints over how a player moves their hands which will allow developers to create "unique game play experiences."
You can get a sense of the thought that has gone into the design of these controllers as you follow along with the engineer in their teardown video - the inclusion of a wide array of IR LEDs works with the tracking camera in order to determine the position and orientation of the controller. Each controller has five finger touch detection sensors installed on either side meaning a finger can be detected just by touch, no need to press a button.
There's not too much in way of accessories for the PSVR2 at the moment - the box it comes with can work as a case but if you'd rather have a stylish case for on the go use instead why not check out the Venom Carry Case for PSVR2
Where You Can Buy It From and How Much?
Pre-orders are already live and the PSVR2 is available from the website either on its own or bundled with Horizon Call of the Mountain.
Here's the kicker ... the PSVR2 costs the same as the disc edition of the PS5 itself - which itself is now available to purchase easily and without sitting in any digital queues for the first time since its release - meaning the PSVR2 will set you back £529.99 on its own and £569.99 for the game bundle.
Whilst we're holding out on our full opinion until we actually get our hands on one, based on what we've seen so far it's clear Sony has put a lot of time, effort, care and attention into the design and function of their latest VR headset and we're excited to see what Sony can offer in the years to come.
Looking at the spec and game offering alone? It's looking like it's going to be a big win for Sony.