PlayStation VR2
Also known asPS VR2 (abbreviation)
DeveloperSony Interactive Entertainment
ManufacturerSony
Product familyPlayStation
TypeVirtual reality headset
Release dateFebruary 22, 2023 (2023-02-22)
Introductory price$549.99 / €599.99 / £529.99
DisplayOLED, HDR, 110° field of view
Graphics"4K" PenTile (2000 × 2040 per eye; 90 or 120 Hz refresh rate)[1]
Controller inputPlayStation VR2 Sense controller, Dualsense[2]
Camera4 x outward-facing, 2 x inward-facing (for eye-tracking)
PlatformPlayStation 5
Dimensions212×158×278 mm (w × h × l)
MassApprox. 560 grams[3]
Backward
compatibility
No
PredecessorPlayStation VR
Websiteplaystation.com/ps-vr2/

The PlayStation VR2 (PS VR2) is a virtual reality headset for the PlayStation 5 home video game console developed by Sony Interactive Entertainment released on February 22, 2023.[4][5]

History

Development of PS VR2 took about six years, and was developed simultaneously alongside the PlayStation 5, with the goal to craft the perfect match of a console and a virtual reality device.[6]

Leading up to the PS VR2 release, a display analyst from the Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC), said that he expected the upcoming next generation VR headset to have a display with the highest pixel density on a commercial OLED panel, with pixel density "well above 800 PPI".[7]

At the 2022 Consumer Electronics Show, Sony announced the PlayStation VR2 for the PlayStation 5.[8][9]

A release date of February 22, 2023, and a retail price of $549.99 was announced on November 2, 2022 at the official PlayStation Blog.[10]

Prior to release, Bloomberg reported that Sony reduced its projections for the initial launch after early pre-orders disappointed.[11] Sony instead claimed that it did "not cut ... production numbers", and told GamesIndustry.biz that it is "seeing enthusiasm from PlayStation fans for the upcoming launch".[12]

Hardware

The headset connects to the PlayStation 5 console through a single USB-C cable that negotiates 12 V via Power Delivery[13][14] and simultaneous USB 3 data and video via DisplayPort alt-mode,[15][16][17] which enables a simple plug and play design.[18][19] The cable length is 4.5 m (14.7 ft).[18] Sony stated that while they are still researching the technical possibility of a wireless connection, due to concerns about its impact on performance, they chose to go with the cable solution.[20][21]

The PS VR2 has dual OLED panels with a "4K" display resolution and 90 Hz/120 Hz refresh rate.[18][22] Each display has a resolution of 2,000 x 2,040 pixels and also supports HDR.[18]

The headset uses fresnel lenses.[23] These lenses "act on microscopic level to significantly reduce ghosting" and "allow for a beautiful image without sacrificing brightness".[24][25]

Compared to the first generation PS VR, the headset overall weight has been reduced,[18] while the headband underwent many design improvements to increase its comfort.[26] The FOV was also increased to approx. 110 degrees.[18]

Unlike the first generation PlayStation VR, which tracked player movements through an external PlayStation Camera, the PS VR2 tracks movements via four cameras on the front of the headset.[18] These same cameras are also used to track the controllers,[27] and to give video feed for the "see-through view" feature, which allows the user to view their surroundings without needing to take off the headset.[18]

The headset also has two inward-facing IR cameras.[28] These are used for eye-tracking to enable games to utilize foveated rendering, a performance optimization technique where the render resolution of the game is reduced in areas where the player is not looking.[5] The eye-tracking can also be used as a input method, such as for selecting UI elements with a glance.[29][30][31]

PS VR2 has a lens adjustment dial, which allows the headset to accommodate different IPD measurements.[18][32] The facial interface of the headset was also designed to be able to accommodate different head shapes and nose sizes,[33] and it can be removed from the PS VR2 headset for cleaning.[18]

PS VR2 also features headset feedback through a built-in motor, which provides subtle haptic effects for added immersion, such as "feeling the character's heartbeat or feeling the rush of objects passing close to the head".[18] Some sources have pointed out that Sony have previously registered patents which mentioned using haptics to reduce motion sickness.[34][35]

Additionally, the headset has a cooling system that incorporates a duct and a small fan to cool the onboard IC chip.[36] In addition to cooling the IC chip, this airflow also provides ventilation to help minimize the lenses fogging up while the player is wearing the headset.[36][37]

The headset has a built-in microphone and a stereo 3.5 mm headphone jack.[18] Using the PS5 Tempest 3D AudioTech, the headset supports 3D audio through headphones, allowing the in-game audio to dynamically adapt to the user position and head movements.[38]

PS VR2 uses the new Sense controllers.[27] The controller was designed with a focus on balancing the center of gravity and reducing weight, while also maintaining comfort and incorporating new features.[39] The controller is shaped like an "orb or hollowed-out sphere", which is used to ideally place a ring of 14 IR LEDs that is used for tracking its position and orientation.[40][41] The controller has several features, including key features from the DualSense controller, like its haptic feedback and adaptive triggers technology.[27] Another new feature is the finger touch detection, which can detect the approximate location of the fingers, enabling the user to make more natural gestures during gameplay.[18][27] This is achieved by using five capacitive finger touch sensors on each controller (four sensors for each button, and one sensor for the analog stick) to detect the placements of the thumb, index, and the middle finger.[42][27][43]

Similar to the original PS VR, the new PS VR2 also features a Social Screen, which allows others to see what the player is experiencing in a 2D format on a TV screen.[18] Cinematic Mode is also supported, which is used to view all non-VR game and media contents on a virtual cinema screen at 1920x1080 @ 120 Hz HDR.[18]

The play area for PS VR2 can be customized using the cameras and the Sense controller.[18] There are three different "VR Play Styles" depending on the game content and compatibility–sitting, standing or room-scale (the last one allowing more movement while playing).[18]


Games and content

Main article: List of PlayStation VR2 games

More than 500 games are in development for PS VR2 according to Sony,[18][44] with more than 100 games available at the launch window,[45] including Resident Evil Village, The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners – Chapter 2: Retribution, Five Nights at Freddy's: Help Wanted 2, No Man's Sky, Star Wars: Tales from the Galaxy's Edge, Demeo, Moss and Moss: Book II remasters, and PS VR2 exclusives Horizon Call of the Mountain and The Dark Pictures: Switchback VR.[46] Gran Turismo 7 and Beat Saber have also been updated to work with PS VR2.[47]

Gran Turismo 7 was also confirmed to have a full game support on the PS VR2 (except for the 2-player splitscreen mode).[48] This is in contrast to the previous game in the series, Gran Turismo Sport, which was only supported by the original PS VR headset in a very limited capacity.[49]

PS VR2 is not compatible with the previous generation PS VR games.[18] Sony said that due to the differences in both the controller tracking hardware and the image rendering principle, porting games from the previous hardware would not be easy.[6][50] It was later reported that many developers are working to upgrade their PS VR games for the PS VR2 system.[51]

According to multiple sources, during a Sony developers conference, Sony told the developers that it wants to focus on "hybrid" VR games for the upcoming headset, much like the PSVR-optional games such as Hitman 3, Resident Evil 7: Biohazard and No Man's Sky.[52]

Reception

Early previews have been positive.[4] Pre-release reviews were mostly positive, lauding the many improvements over its predecessor and its advanced technology.[53] The lack of backward compatibility and the price of the headset received mixed reaction.[54][55] Various game developers praised the capabilities of the headset, particularly in combination with the Playstation 5.[56][57] The new Sense controllers received acclaim from CNET,[5] while Eurogamer singled out the HDR OLED screen for its brightness and contrast, stating that "it now feels more comparable to a proper high-end OLED TV".[58] Some reviewers criticized the inconvenience of the wired connection.[59] While the launch library was described as "solid" by CNN,[60] The Telegraph had some concerns about future first party software plans beyond the current offering.[61]

On Metacritic, out of 51 professional critic reviews, 14 were in the "Extremely positive" category, 33 in the "Positive" category, 4 in the "Mixed" category, and 0 in the "Negative" category.[62]

In regard to the software, previews of the exclusive title Gran Turismo 7 were positive, with Motorsport.com describing it as "the best console virtual reality experience to date".[63][64][65]

XR Games and Sony Pictures VR took home Best in Gaming and Best in the World (across all categories) for the VR Shooter Zombieland: Headshot Fever Reloaded at The Australian XR Festival Awards 2023. [66]

See also

References

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