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Sony Reveals Project Morpheus PlayStation 4 VR Headset
After months of speculation, Sony has finally announced its virtual reality prototype for the PlayStation 4, Project Morpheus. The device is a head mounted display, much like the Oculus Rift, and features a white visor with a black wrap-around piece along the eye line, and around the edges giving off a blue LED glow.
Sony has stated that the six principles of VR are sight, sound, tracking, control, ease of use, and content. Since Sony has experience with sound and sight, the VR will contain the resident technology that Sony has been able to innovate in over the past several years. For tracking, Sony will be utilizing PS Move’s technology. The PlayStation camera, which costs $59.99, will be essential in using Project Morpheus. PlayStation head Shuhei Yoshida stated that the camera was “almost designed for VR.” DualShock 4’s sensors and light can be used in conjunction with Morpheus, with the PS Move also proving to be an essential component, and both allow for firm control. In terms of ease of use, Sony wants players to simply pick up the Morpheus and use it with no issue. You can pick it and put it on and your in VR, you can just as easily turn it off as well.
Sony highlighted content for the Morpheus by showing off a list of several companies that are on board with its new device. Unity, Havok, Wwise, Gigantic, Autodesk Gameware, Criware, DDD, Silicon Studio, Epic Games, Bitsquid, Crytek are all on that list.
Things such as virtual tours or demos are great with Morpheus, but Sony is emphasizing games as the go-to source of entertainment with the headset. The company believes both first-person and third-person games can work great with the device, as well as online and couch multiplayer.
Sony R&D engineer Anton Mikhailov highlighted head motion as being “law” when designing a VR headset. Focusing on that aspect will remedy the issue of motion sickness. Sony wants players to get nauseous only from having a great time, not from the actual headset itself, which will have a 1080p display with a 90+ degree field of view. Mikhailov also said that virtual reality must keep latency slow, keep frame-rate high, calibrate well, render clean images, and “seal the deal” with 3D audio. It also has to be hooked to the PS4 with a 5 foot wire for now, as Sony is still looking for other alternatives.
“We believe Morpheus will further enhance the world of PlayStation 4 with seamless integration with PlayStation Camera, DualShock 4, and PS Move,” said Yoshida.
There’s no planned release date yet, but will “come out soon.”