The world of gaming has evolved greatly over the past few decades with the improvement of technology that presents better graphics, more complex story lines, and more immersive gaming experiences. The past few years have created even more change with the technology of virtual reality, the most realistic and enveloping capabilities to rule the gaming world.
Virtual reality gaming involves a headset that allows for 360 degree viewing capabilities and puts you into the game where your motions are replicated during play. The uniqueness of the vision component of these gaming gives users the opportunities to not only play in these worlds, but to be fully in them. With these new abilities, gamers will need to allocate much more room for these gaming experiences. Many games will allow users to stay seated, but many other games will require more motion to become fully integrated. With this, come many more opportunities for gaming injuries. Since users will have the headset to block their vision, there are greater chances of gamers tripping over and running into items in their gaming area, which will change the gaming world immensely.
As more and more competitors enter the market with their virtual reality interfaces, gamers are presented with many more options that can offer a range of differentiators. Gaming industry’s heavy hitter, PlayStation, has recently released PlayStation VR that is compatible with PS4. The newest virtual reality gaming system enters an extremely competitive market with the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and Samsung’s Gear VR.
Google has also recently revealed their virtual reality gaming system, Daydream View, which is set to release in November. Gamers can be added to the waitlist in order to be notified when this system will become available. It will be sold through Best Buy, the Google Store, and Verizon. It will come in a variety of colors and will be made of a soft, wearable, and washable material.
These major VR products range in price anywhere up to around $800 depending on the system and what products are included in the packages. PlayStation will enter the market somewhere in the middle in terms of price range, whereas Google Daydream View will be positioned lower in price. Depending on the needs or wants of a user, will really determine which system is the best fit.
The setup of each system varies greatly and do require a variety of additional technology for them to become up and running. The PlayStation VR needs the PS4, PlayStation Camera, and controllers. Both the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift need a PC, best if it is a powerful one. The Samsung Gear VR is smart-phone compatible, as will the Google Daydream View will be.
With all of the companies offering a variety of virtual reality systems, there is still a quite limited selection of actual games for virtual reality users. Gaming options can be even scarcer depending on the amount of room gamers have available for play. As more competitors enter the market though and VR users increase, more games will be developed and released.
As with any new technology, there are still many problems that do exist as the technology is continuously improved upon. For now the use of VR has not caused great decreases in console gaming, and it might still be a long while before virtual reality does stick as the major gaming source.