While Sony has confirmed that the upcoming PS5 will support PSVR, it's been rather tight-lipped on the specifics, with no word on a PSVR 2, or which of the announced games so far might support the feature. All of the titbits we've gleaned so far have come from patent leaks, and today's is no different.
Virtual reality isn't something Microsoft is pursuing with the Xbox Series X, with Xbox boss Phil Spencer justifying the decision by saying "nobody’s asking for VR," but Sony isn't giving up on its PSVR headset, and now we have another clue as to what's in store for the second iteration of the device.
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First up is the PSVR's 'sickness reduction system' aimed at preventing motion sickness when using VR, which has been a not uncommon complaint since VR headsets became widely available for consumers. The patent (opens in new tab) was filed last year, and published just last month. If nausea while wearing a VR headset could be reduced, the potential install base would immediately grow, opening up more opportunities for PS5 VR spin-offs, or full-blown titles, as we saw with Resident Evil 7 VR.
The second and more recent patent (opens in new tab) is for an 'information processing system, information processing method, and computer program' that will create a "highly enjoyable viewing experience," and give users "a viewing experience with high entertainment characteristics".
This new level of immersion will apparently be created thanks to a panoramic image being displayed in the headset, "and when a user wearing the head mounted display rotates his/her head, a panoramic image corresponding to the direction of the line of sight is displayed."
The patent adds that "by using the head mounted display, it is possible to increase the feeling of immersion in the virtual space."
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We still don't really know what the headset will look like, and given that the current PSVR for the PlayStation 4 will also be compatible with the PS5, we're not sure exactly how advanced the new one will be, or what kind of features it will introduce in order to push players who already own a PSVR into upgrading.
The price could also be a huge factor in the adoption rate, and forking out a few hundred quid on top of however much the PS5 will cost might not be in most people's budgets.
Either way, it looks like the PSVR 2 is going to offer a markedly improved experience over the PSVR - if only for the reduction in motion sickness that's an obstacle for a lot of people. We'll have to see if Sony's made the right decision in sticking with virtual reality for next-gen when the console launches this holiday season.
Source: Gaming INTEL (opens in new tab)