Sony confirmed it’s working on virtual reality technology, codenamed Project Morpheus, though things are still in the prototype stage. The company made the big announcement at GDC up in San Francisco, showing off a really futuristic pair of goggles that glow and look like something RoboCop would wear. Shuhei Yoshida, president of Sony Worldwide Studios, said Sony had been at work on the technology for awhile now. With Oculus garnering so much VR attention, it’s no surprise to see a big name company come out with something of its own—and it’s really big news for gamers, fans of VR or not.
Project Morpheus is being designed to work with the PlayStation 4, and has been in the development stage for the past three years, Yoshida said. The company’s goal, he explained, is to “push the boundaries of play,” while realizing a lifelong dream for many gamers. The peripheral will apparently work with Sony’s PlayStation Camera and PlayStation Move controller. At Sony’s GDC event, the company showed off a God of War demo, which pretty much sounds like the coolest VR experience in gaming. Imagine being Kratos and doing battle with enormous titans.
The design that was shown off in public isn’t the final hardware, though you’d have no argument from us if it was. The thing looks awesome, though it does seem to be a little more complex than what we’ve seen from Oculus. Since things are still in development, important details like price and release weren’t unveiled, and information like that is likely still a long ways off. But Sony has firmly stated its intention to enter VR, meaning a viable option could possibly be in millions of homes later this year (or next?).
It will be very exciting to see how games are designed for VR on such a huge platform. If Sony can attract developers to create exclusive VR experiences on the PlayStation 4 (like God of War, or similar action titles. Really the possibilities are endless)—and if done correctly, VR could potentially turn a huge corner. Sony said it will demonstrate Project Morpheus at GDC tomorrow, so we’ll have to see how the public responds to the work-in-progress.
Content is king for VR and Project Morpheus. “We want to make PlayStation the best place for VR” – not just playing, but developing
— PlayStation (@PlayStation) March 19, 2014
Update: Sony shared even more details about its current VR tech, including what to expect from the current dev kit. Dev kits will do 1080p (like Oculus’ Crystal Cove), have a 90-degree field of view, and 360 head tracking, which is a huge component for getting VR right. It will also use its own headset, have feature spatial sound, and have DualShock 4 and PlayStation Move support, as mentioned above.