When it comes to virtual reality, it seems like framerate is going to be massively important to the effect the new display style has on gamers. Sony is strongly encouraging developers to go for the fastest framerate possible.
Speaking at the Montreal International Game Summit 2015, PlayStation’s Vernon Harmon, Sr. Technical Account Manager at SCEA, talked about what it’s going to take to pull off VR competently.
Eventually, over the course of his 50 minute presentation, Harmon reached this slide (as spotted by NeoGAF).
It’s written plain as day there, isn’t it? “Going fast is not optional” when it comes to VR. Games operating at a “solid” 60fps is the minimum, and Harmon explains that “any dropped frames can cause discomfort, not just disruption of presence.” This is more than just breaking immersion with choppy framerates. This is about make costumers sick and uncomfortable, something that could easily hamstring VR.
Finally, they even offer that rendering at 60fps my not be good enough due to this discomfort. Sony’s encouraging developers to “try to reach at least 90fps!”
Certainly, achieving 90fps will be a challenge for developers on the PlayStation 4. Running modern games at 60fps without VR has been a bit of a stretch for some publishers, so achieving 90 might be really hard. I’d expect the first round of PlayStation VR games to look less stunning than, say, The Witcher 3 in order to achieve 90fps.