The PlayStation (PSVR) is Sony’s virtual reality headset for the PS4 (PlayStation 4). For many years, video game enthusiasts have been eagerly awaiting the release of this device. Indeed, the PlayStation VR, presented as an extension of the PlayStation 4, is an accessible solution to participate in this technological revolution that is virtual reality. Here is the complete test & review.
Sony will have put the time, but finally entered the virtual reality market in October 2016. The company is also the first to offer a viable solution in virtual reality for home console. In 2016, the formerly known Project Morpheus has constantly created the sensation at trade shows and multiple conventions. The PlayStation VR has managed, through effective communication and attractive licenses to create a real impatience with the community of console players.
We tested for you the PSVR, a headset that claims to compete with PC solutions, for a price more affordable. Indeed, the other solutions are much more expensive if you take into account the power of the computer that you will need. Count around $899.99 just for the PC, even if Rift-ready computers are available for $500, but can barely get your Oculus Rift.
Unboxing of PlayStation VR
We got the coveted PlayStation VR, with its camera and PS Move to enjoy a complete experience. Each of its equipment is accompanied by accessories, which we will reveal in this part. To maintain the suspense, we will reveal the content of the packaging of the PlayStation VR in the last place.
Let’s start with the least vital to the proper functioning of your PlayStation VR, the PS Move. Even if the virtual reality experience is more immersive and convincing when you have it, most PSVR games can do without it. You can decide to give yourself two, or buy one for a fee of around $95.40. In any case, your controllers will inevitably be accompanied by a mini USB cable (not to be confused with the traditional Micro USB PlayStation 4), a wrist strap to hang on your wrist and a guide to use.
In order to use your PlayStation VR, you will also need to own the PlayStation Camera. Your headset will not work without its help. Indeed, the PlayStation Camera will be requested from the first configuration of your PSVR. It recognizes your position and your movements. It will be provided with its base and costs the sum of $44.99, if you were to replace it one day.
The PlayStation Camera is not natively integrated with the PS VR. Your headset does not sevre you anything without this device. We find this a shame, but know that a bundle integrating the camera and the PS Move should very quickly appear. Finally, let’s talk about the packaging of the PlayStation VR. To avoid overloading the text, we will list its contents in telegraphic style:
– The PlayStation VR headset
– An HDMI cable
– A USB cable
– An AC adapter
– A power cord
– A PS VR connection cable
– A pair of stereo headphones
– A processor
– The documentation
If you think that the presence of all these elements of connectivity is worrying about the sedentary nature of the solution proposed by Sony, you are right. Note also the return of an element that will delight the nostalgic: the presence of a demo disc containing several experiences that will allow you to get started on your new virtual reality headset. In the past, demo discs were very fashionable. Video game magazines regularly featured CDs announcing the upcoming games to be released. Nice initiative on the part of the manufacturer therefore.
PlayStation VR Design
Formerly known as the Morpheus Project, Sony Computer Entertainment announced its virtual reality headset in 2014. A direct competitor of the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive, Sony’s headset is the first VR headset for new generations of living room consoles. The editorial verdict: its design is one of the best on the market. It also has the merit of being highly customizable, so that it marries all forms of skull. There will be no question of adhesive tapes here: we press, we put the headset and let go. In addition, the flexibility of the headset is very convenient because it allows not only not to feel discomfort on the face, but also to stretch for block any outside light that could harm the user’s experience.
More modern and more elegant than the previous prototypes, its white color and blue LEDs blend perfectly with the entire range of the Japanese giant. It stands out for its color of HTC Vive and Oculus, both dressed in black. In terms of comfort, this virtual reality headset surpasses its competitors. T light ery, its weight is so evenly distributed over the entire skull that we forget its presence. The flexible plastic that surrounds your eye has two advantages: It does not put pressure on your face and lets the air through to cool you during your experience.
Installing the PlayStation VR
The number of accessories and cables required to install and use the PlayStation VR is striking. The textual information in the installation manual will not help you, but Sony has had the good idea to guide the user through schematics and visuals. Each of the cables is numbered, and these numbers are found in the documentation so that you can easily locate the plug in question.
The installation of the PlayStation VR is therefore rather simple and intuitive, despite the first sensation that one feels in unpacking. An enclosure will serve as a relay between your PlayStation 4, your television and your headphones. Its main purpose is to divide the video signal, so that you can also display the image on your TV and it is not fully requisitioned by your PS VR headset.
To work properly, you will have to connect together your television, the PlayStation Camera, the processor, the connection cable of the PS VR, and finally, the PlayStation VR. Even if the maneuver is to be accessible to the greatest number, we would have preferred a less bulky solution than other virtual reality headsets. In addition to being unattractive, we imagine our bring PlayStation VR to friends. It will therefore be necessary for the player to use his creativity to at least conceal the many connections that the PlayStation VR requires.
Once the solution is assembled, the rest is a pleasure. Updates and downloads are done automatically and the system fully supports the player. After calibrating your PlayStation VR, you can immediately start enjoying its already extensive content. Be aware that a remote control is present on the PlayStation VR cable and will be used to interact with your virtual reality headset, to increase or decrease the sound, mute the microphone, or just turn it on and off.
PlayStation VR performance
Despite a price much more affordable than high-end headsets, the PlayStation VR demonstrates surprising performance. Obviously, Sony has worked hard to offer its customers experiences in virtual reality of quality. We also recommend using the HDMI cable that came with your new home console. Indeed, if you decide to take your old HDMI cable, the PS4 Pro will not be able to reveal its full potential.
The graphics are amazing quality. Of course, everything will depend on the content you will do but overall, the image resolution is well made. EVE Valkyrie, already present on other platforms like the Oculus Rift is equally satisfying visually on the PlayStation VR. Indeed, considered by many as a technical showcase of virtual reality, the game is just as beautiful on the Sony version. Other games, like Batman Arkham VR or Farpoint, prove the quality of the graphic rendering proposed by the PS VR which will sevre your total and complete immersion.
The controllers themselves are also reactive. This is not surprising since the PS Move have been present in the video game landscape for a long time. Adapting your finished accessories to a new technology is a total success. PS Move is well exploited, easily recognized by the console, and provides the player a gaming experience that has nothing to envy to HTC Vive in terms of playability. Whether they turn into Batarang, shotgun or hands (in Job Simulator), the game mechanics are excellent and perfectly adapted to PS Move.
Best PlayStation VR games: exclusive games, the main asset of PSVR
Even before the release of PSVR, Andrew House of Sony announced that more than 230 developers and publishers are working on game titles of which 160 are confirmed and 50 planned for the launch. The PlayStation VR has something to seduce, but with an image refresh rate of 120Hz, an image resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels (ie 960 x 1080 for each eye) combined with the use of a console dating from 3 years , her success may be compromised.
In fact, the games catalog is the main highlight of this device. On this side, Sony did not hesitate to invest in a catalog of high quality exclusives. Even if most of the experiments offered on this platform during the launch were more of the order of the side mission or mini-game Sony no longer has to blush in the face of competition. The Japanese has made efforts to prove once again its competence in gaming, and offer its public gaming experiences with satisfactory life. PSVR combines both the best games available on Oculus Rift or HTC Vive, and a selection of high quality exclusives.
In addition to the Playroom VR game bundled with the headset, the PlayStation VR is entitled to its game lot for virtual reality:
Beat Saber: the phenomenon game has landed on PlayStation VR
Impossible to miss Beat Saber. The game of cutting cubes with light-sabers in song rhythm is a real phenomenon that has conquered most gamers in virtual reality. The game was immediately a phenomenal success and has been adapted to many platforms, including the PlayStation VR. Barely launched, Beat Saber has immediately imposed in the top of the best games sales on PSVR.
Astro Bot Rescue Mission: the unmissable platform game
Astro Bot Rescue Mission is THE good surprise on PlayStation VR. This is a third person platform game in virtual reality. Without a doubt, this is an AAA game. The graphics are very neat and the atmosphere of the game will captivate you. The gameplay is very original and well thought out. Astro Bot Rescue Mission is designed for both young and old alike. A game in virtual reality on PS VR not to be missed.
Skyrim VR, available exclusively on PSVR until the end of 2018, is without a doubt the best PSVR game at the moment. Developed by Bethesda, this title is a complete port of the famous game Skyrim available on consoles and PCs since 2011. This virtual reality adaptation, very successful, offers the player the opportunity to immerse themselves in the world of Skyrim more immersive way never. Even when you know the game, it’s a real pleasure to contemplate the magical landscapes in the VR.
Resident Evil 7 VR
With Resident Evil 7 VR, Sony dominates the market of horror games in VR. This title is simply terrifying and signals the return to the roots of the Resident Evil saga. This is not a derivative experience, but a full porting of the Resident Evil 7 game in virtual reality. Lifetime is consistent, incredible immersion, and high quality graphics.
Already available on Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, Superhot VR is a very original FPS type game. In this game, time only happens when the player moves. Thus, the player must carefully observe his environment and then execute all enemies in seconds using the weapons and objects around him. An experience of its kind.
Arizona Sunshine is the reference for VR FPS. Already available on Vive, Rift and Windows Mixed Reality, this game features a campaign mode and a 4-player survival mode. The goal? Massacre zombies using all kinds of guns in an apocalyptic future. Fun gameplay, great graphics, a mysterious storyline and zombies to explode are the ingredients of the game’s success.
Farpoint is the first PSVR game compatible with the Aim controller. This rifle-shaped accessory makes it possible to multiply the sensation of immersion in the FPS. Farpoint itself is a very good shooting game, with a sci-fi-style script, neat graphics and great single and multiplayer gameplay.
RIGS Mechanized Combat League
A first-person shooter that propels you into a robotic universe where arena fights are the main source of entertainment. This solo game will challenge your physical abilities through a series of sporting events.
In the same genre as the TiTanfall shooter, this fast-paced action game challenges the side effects of “motion sickness” found in the use of virtual reality headphones. Although PlayStation VR technology supports graphics prerequisites, the field of view makes it difficult to see the different events around. Some users will still feel daubed after their robotic adventure.
Robinson: The Journey
Bringing human passion for dinosaurs together in a video game is Crytek’s choice. In the shoes of an adventurer lost on a prehistoric planet, you will have to survive in a hostile world. This scripted action game turned to virtual immersion is headlining 3D experiments to test.
During the E3, this open world gave the player a lot of freedom, but we regretted his lack of interaction. Robinson: The Journey has the same challenge as RIGS to fight the “motion sickness”. Plus, this resource-hungry game will push the PlayStation VR and PlayStation 4 technology to their limits. It remains to be seen whether the result will live up to our expectations.
Enter the space in a complex universe reserved for fans of science fiction. A strategic game rich in content and evolutionary where space battles and tactical incursions are numerous. One of the safe values for the Sony headset. EVE Valkyrie makes you live your childhood dreams by putting yourself in the control of a spaceship.
In hand, the game is very stable graphically. No loss of image, this version of the game on PlayStation VR however offers more comfort compared to its competitors. The multiplayer mode is not restrictive, players can play together, no matter their virtual reality support.
Until Dawn: Rush of Blood
Seven terrifying levels await you in this spin off of the Until Down series- oriented arcade shooter. Here, no scripted content, you are equipped with revolvers in a phantom train launched at full speed. SuperMassiveGames, creator of the hit horror game of the PlayStation 4 turns to virtual reality by bringing up to date the “rails shooter”. The “scared jumps” are very effective in virtual reality.
The PlayStation VR, compatible with other platforms
As we already knew, Sony plans to make its virtual reality headset fully compatible with PC platforms. But unofficially, the PS VR community has been able to detect compatibility with most other platforms, provided they have an HDMI port. So you can play your Xbox One, PC or Wii U games with your VVRR PS.
Of course, the VR function of the headset will be disabled. You can simply enjoy a giant screen in your virtual reality headset. But this permeability of Sony’s headset leaves one wondering about the future discoveries of developers and other small computer geniuses. One of them already allows owners of the PS VR to access the Steam VR catalog formerly dedicated to HTC Vive, a library much richer than that of the new Sony platform.
Trinus PSVR: play VR games SteamVR PC with the PSVR
Thanks to Trinus PSVR software, it is possible to play the VR PC games available on the SteamVR platform using a PSVR. Simply connect the PSVR to a PC instead of connecting it to the PS4, and configure the Trinus software.
Then you can enjoy the content available on Steam VR for HTC Vive and Oculus Rift from your PSVR. It is even possible to play classic PC games in cinema mode. Do not hesitate to consult our complete tutorial to use Trinus PSVR.
The PS4 Pro to improve the performance of the PlayStation VR
Developed almost in conjunction with the PS VR, the PS4 Pro, available since last November, enhances the virtual reality experience with the Sony VR headset. Twice as powerful on paper as its previous iteration, the PS4 Pro can significantly improve the graphics performance of traditional games via 4K resolution, but also that of the PlayStation VR.
PSVR 2 vs PSVR 1: what are the differences?
In October 2017, Sony launched a new version of its headset. The PSVR CUH-ZVR2 brings a lot of novelties compared to the original version, which is no longer produced. The layout of the buttons has been changed for better ergonomics, earphones are provided with the headphones and the Jack is located under the headphones and not on the cable.
The design has also been improved. Last important change: the processor case is now HDR compatible. Thus, to enjoy the HDR on the PS4, players will no longer need to disconnect the cables from the box to connect directly to the console.
The price of PSVR down since September 2017
Since September 2017, the PlayStation VR has fallen in price. The Sony VR headset for PS4 is now available for a suggested retail price of 350 euros instead of 399 euros. For 399 euros, the headset is now delivered with the PlayStation Camera. Sony’s decision follows the price cuts for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets.
This new price is therefore more attractive than before. However, faced with the drop in price of Rift and Vive headsets, the question arises whether the PSVR is still interesting.
PlayStation VR (PSVR) vs Oculus Rift vs HTC Vive: Which is Sony’s headset over the competition?
At the launch of PSVR, Sony’s strategic positioning was clear. By offering a virtual reality headset for $450 ($900 including the console and the necessary accessories), the Japanese greatly reduced the cost of entry into the VR. Faced with a proposed Oculus Rift for $800 and a HTC Vive for $1000, the choice was quickly made. Especially since to use these headsets for PC, it was also necessary to count the purchase price of a sufficiently powerful PC exceeding the $1100 mark.
Although the experience of the PSVR is not as accomplished, realistic and immersive as that delivered by the Rift and Vive, the much lower price gave it an indisputable advantage. However, in just over a year, the VR headset market has changed a lot.
Since the summer of 2017, the Oculus Rift is now available for $499 with its Oculus Touch motion detection controllers. The HTC Vive is offered for $499. Although the price of PSVR has also dropped to $257.25, the gap has narrowed significantly, especially with the Rift. VR-Ready PCs have also dropped significantly, and we can now rely more on $500 than $1200.
Thus, from now on, the PSVR does not really distinguish itself by its unbeatable price. It is more of a direct competitor of the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. And as a direct competitor, the PSVR is struggling to keep the comparison. It all starts with its 960 x 1080 screen per eye, compared to 1080 x 1200 per eye for the Rift and the Vive. The difference does not seem huge on paper, but it is blatant once in the VR. The graphics are much less detailed, and the games tend more easily to give nausea.
Beyond the graphic aspect, the PSVR has other technical shortcomings. Its tracking system, based on a simple PlayStation Camera, is ridiculous when compared to the tracking systems of Rift and Vive. These two headsets now offer a 360-degree room-scale tracking, allowing the user to move simultaneously in VR and the real world at the scale of a room. On the Rift and Vive, users can walk, turn on their own, get up, squat or even jump. On PSVR, it is mandatory to remain static in order not to leave the field of the camera, and it is impossible to turn.
This limited tracking is harmful to immersion, and also has an impact on PS Move controllers. PlayStation Move frequently leaves the field of view of the camera, and the player loses control which can lead to defeat during a game. Moreover, the PlayStation Move controllers themselves do not make the weight against the Oculus Touch and Vive Wands. Touch, in particular, really allows the player to use his hands in the VR in an intuitive and precise way. With PS Move, the player feels more like using two chopsticks.
In most games, handling is very difficult. According to the rumor, Sony is preparing other controllers and a new tracking system for the PSVR, but in the meantime, it would be wrong to say that the experience offered by this headset is comparable to that offered by the Rift and Vive.
Review of the PlayStation VR
The PlayStation VR is probably the virtual reality headset that will democratize the technology. Indeed, Sony already has 40 million potential customers equipped with PlayStation 4. The solution offered by Sony, which will cost you, if you’re doing well, less than $900 is very attractive. A graphic resolution of good quality, a controlled gameplay from the manufacturer and attractive licenses will certainly create the sensation in the coming months. The PlayStation VR, released October 13, 2016, offers a suggested retail price of $224.95.
On the other hand, you will need to get the PlayStation Camera for about $44.99 and possibly a pair of PS Move for about $95.36. Those who do not own the PlayStation 4 will be able to take advantage of the lower price since the release of the PlayStation 4 Pro, or opt for this newer model, which will probably be better able to manage VR in the near future.
Advantages and disadvantages
- An affordable price
- Comfortable and lightweight
- Excellent performance
- The camera vital to its operation is not provided
- The many cables that make the whole bulky
- Visual quality remains lower than Vive and Rift
- The controllers and the tracking system leave something to be desired
The PlayStation VR to give a second wind to the PS4
The PS4 lounge console is a bit out of breath. Launched in 2013, the Sony console has met a phenomenal success. Nearly 6 after its release, the PS4 is a bit dated and the Japanese manufacturer is already thinking of his successor, the PS5. The Japanese video games giant, however, relies on the PlayStation VR to give a second wind to its home console. Many games are in preparation and the successive price cuts on the virtual reality headphones make that the attraction for this one is always strong.
Many PS4 owners decide to take the plunge and move on to virtual reality. Sony put a lot on the PS VR to keep alive its home console while waiting for the next that could come out, according to various specialists, around the end of the year 2020. No information however if it will come with a new virtual reality headset. Looking at the commercial success of PlayStation VR, few doubts that Sony wants to continue with this technology especially since Microsoft with the Xbox still seems not decided to take the plunge.
Beautiful games-level outings for the PlayStation VR
Wipeout Omega Collection is already here
The announcement was made in December. A VR mode for WipEout Omega Collection compilation. However, since nothing. It’s now settled. The latest update allows you to enjoy WipEout HD, WipEout HD Fury, and WipEout 2048 with the PS VR headset. In the program, you will also have 3D audio. A must for nostalgic franchise but beware, the experience can be particularly intense for your stomach.
Killing Floor Incursion released on 1 st May
The game was previously only available on the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. He arrives (finally) on the PSVR from 1st May. A perfect game for those who want to knock out chain monsters. Playable in cooperation, the game will also have the right to exclusive content PSVR, called The Crucible which seems very inspired by Tron. We ask for more. Announced price: around $39.99.
One Piece from end of May
Good news if you are a fan of the One Piece manga. Its declination on the PSVR arrives May 22, two days before the launch in Japan. One Piece: Grand Cruise will allow you to join the crew of Luffy, Zoro and Nami to relive the best adventures already offered by the manga. The price has not been communicated yet.
Blind: It will wait on PSVR
This is the bad news of recent days. The declination of Blind on PSVR may be delayed. It will be launched in the coming weeks on all other platforms but, for the PS VR, it will take a few more months. As a reminder, in this game, you play as a blind person who must find his way through echolocation as Daredevil can do. Patience! This game may be worth it.