The PSVR 2 is the most recent VR headset from Sony, which is exclusive to PS5. Following the announcement last year, we’ve gained a steady stream of insight into what to expect from the headset, and it has been confirmed that the PSVR 2 will build on the foundations set by the PSVR to provide an entirely new VR gaming experience. So, it’s worth keeping tabs on if you’re an avid VR gamer.
The PSVR 2 is set to follow in the footsteps of the original PSVR while introducing something entirely new to VR gaming and is set to launch in February 2023. Given the already-immersive nature of the PS5 and DualSense 5, this headset will build upon what the PS5 is already capable of while becoming one of the best VR headsets to date.
The original PSVR was released in 2016 for the PS4, so the long-awaited announcement for the second edition a handful of years on means there are a lot of expectations to meet. In addition, the PSVR 2 is set to host a more ergonomic build to guarantee comfort for long gaming sessions, so even though it’s destined to showcase what was so positive about the PSVR, it’ll still carve its own identity in VR gaming.
We’ve rounded up everything you need to know about the PSVR 2 before its release and aim to showcase what’s so impressive about this build compared to its predecessor. Since the headset is released exclusively to the PS5, you may want to turn your attention to our PS5 vs Digital Edition PS5 guide if you want to get the setup ready.
PSVR 2: Cut to the chase
- What is it? The next generation of PlayStation VR
- When is it out? February 22, 2023
- How much will it cost? $549.99 / €599.99 / £529.99 / AU$858
PSVR 2: Hardware
The PSVR 2 headset promises a huge leap forward over the original PlayStation VR. Not only will the PSVR 2 take advantage of the PS5’s more powerful hardware, it has a significantly higher resolution display for each eye as well. Faster refresh rates, a wider field of view, and improved tracking and input have also been confirmed.
PSVR 2 specs rumors previously indicated that the headset will include an OLED display that boasts a total resolution of 4000 X 2040 pixels – that’s 2000 X 2040 per eye and just slightly more than the Oculus Quest 2. Also rumored were a 110-degree field of view and foveated rendering (a technique that uses gaze tracking to render only certain parts of the image), and sensory features in the headset itself.
Sony has since confirmed that the PSVR 2 offers 4K resolution, HDR, a 110-degree field of view, foveated rendering, and frame rates of 90 to 120Hz. PSVR 2 also includes inside-out tracking, which means it’ll track you and your controller through integrated cameras embedded in the headset. Your movements and the direction you look will be reflected in-game, without the need for an external camera.
The new sensory features of PSVR 2 combine eye tracking, headset feedback, 3D Audio, and the PSVR 2 Sense controller to create a deeper feeling of immersion. A single built-in motor in the headset will add an additional tactile element, which can replicate the player’s pulse during tense moments, or the rush of objects passing by a player’s head.
Eye tracking will be a particularly pleasing addition for VR enthusiasts, which lets PSVR 2 track the motion of your eyes. Simply look in a specific direction and the headset will create an additional input for your game character. This results in a more intuitive and natural experience. PSVR 2 also isn’t wireless, but only requires one cable between the headset and the console to use.
PSVR 2: release date
After previously announcing an “Early 2023” release window, we now know exactly when PSVR 2 is arriving. According to a recent PlayStation Blog post, it’s launching worldwide on February 22, 2023.
If you’re interested in pre-ordering it, anyone living in the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, Belgium, Netherlands and Luxembourg can do so via the PlayStation Direct store. Pre-orders went live on November 15 worldwide but only for those who’d registered beforehand and received an email. For other regions, Sony advises PSVR 2 information “will be provided through participating local retailers.”
PSVR 2: price
After much speculation, Sony has finally confirmed PSVR 2’s price. According to PlayStation Blog, it’ll cost $549.99 / €599.99 / £529.99 for a standard bundle, which comes with PS VR2 Sense controllers and stereo headphones. A separate PSVR 2 bundle with Horizon Call of the Mountain (digital code) is also available for $599.99 / €649.99 / £569.99. No official Australian prices were announced for either.
For context, that’s more than the PS5 console itself, even after Sony’s recent price hike. Right now, the PS5 currently retails at $499.99 / £479.99 / AU$799.95, or $399.99 / £389.99 / AU$649.95 for the PS5 Digital Edition.
It doesn’t compare favourably with its biggest VR competitor, Meta’s Oculus Quest 2, which currently sells for $399.99 / £399.99 / AU$630. However, this price tag makes a lot more sense when you consider Sony’s using premium tech. For comparison, a “premium” VR headset currently on the market is the HTC Vive Pro, which retails for $800, £800, or around AU$1,045.
It’s also more expensive than the original PSVR at launch, which originally retailed at $499 (£399, about AU$650). These days, you can find that retailing for around $200 / £259 / AU$420, but it’s worth remembering that the PSVR Starter bundle has gone through several price reductions and is over six years old.
PSVR 2: controllers
The upcoming PSVR 2 controllers will be getting a significant performance and design upgrade. We also now know Sony’s next-gen VR peripheral is called the PlayStation VR2 Sense controller.
These new controllers drop the classic PS Move controller design from the original PSVR. Instead, these favor a more typical approach seen in modern VR controllers, like Oculus Quest 2’s Touch controllers. The PSVR 2 controllers will feature baton-like handles with a plastic orb around them. They also have the same adaptive trigger features found in the DualSense Wireless Controller. This will allow for differing tensions on any given in-game action.
They’ll also feature haptic feedback and finger touch detection, letting a game know where your digits are resting without having to press a button. Speaking on PlayStation Blog, Hideaki Nishino, head of platform planning and management at PlayStation, said these features mean you’ll be able “to make more natural gestures with your hands during gameplay.”
While it’s unclear how much the PSVR 2 Sense controllers will cost, Sony has announced an official charging station accessory to go alongside it. Available from launch, that’ll cost $49.99 / €49.99 / £39.99 and, as with the headset, there’s no confirmed Australian price yet.
PSVR 2: specs
Sony revealed the full specs of the PSVR 2 at CES 2022. Here’s a breakdown of Sony’s PSVR 2 specs:
|PSVR 2 specs||Header Cell – Column 1|
|Panel resolution||2000 x 2040 per eye|
|Panel refresh rate||90Hz, 120Hz|
|Field of View||Approx. 110 degrees|
|Sensors||Motion Sensor: Six-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer))|
|Cameras||4 cameras for headset and controller tracking, IR camera for eye tracking per eye|
|Feedback||Vibration on headset|
|Communication with PS5||USB Type-C|
|Audio||Input: Built-in microphone, Output: Stereo headphone jack|
Sony has added a vent to the PSVR 2 to make playing in the headset a more comfortable experience.
“One of the areas I wanted to focus on first was the idea of creating a vent in the headset to let air out, similar to the vents on the PS5 console that allows airflow,” senior art director Yujin Morisawa wrote in a blog post. “Our engineers came up with this idea as a good way to allow ventilation and avoid having the lens fog up while players are immersed in their VR games”.
The PSVR 2 is also slightly lighter, thanks to a slimmer design. Both those features should make it more comfortable to play in VR for longer.
PSVR 2: games
We’re still a long way off from this headset releasing, so it’s not entirely surprising that currently, we’ve only seen a handful of confirmed PSVR 2 games. When Sony officially revealed PlayStation VR2’s name back in January, we got a brief look at Horizon Call of the Mountain (opens in new tab) from Guerrilla and Firesprite, but no other games.
Since then, we’ve gotten a much better look at what to expect. Sony has confirmed PSVR 2 has over 20 games at launch, offering a mix of first-party and third-party games. Between sequels like Firewall Ultra to adaptations like Among Us VR, we’ve had a few confirmations. Meanwhile, June 2022’s State of Play conference revealed several new titles, including some big hitters from third-party developers.
You can find the full list of what’s been confirmed below:
- After The Fall
- Among Us VR
- Blacktop Hoops
- Cities VR – Enhanced Edition
- Cosmonious High
- Crossfire: Sierra Squad
- Do Not Open Will Spook
- Firewall Ultra
- Ghostbusters: Rise of the Ghost Lord
- Hello Neighbor: Search and Rescue
- Horizon Call of the Mountain
- Jurassic World Aftermath Collection
- No Man’s Sky
- Pistol Whip VR
- Requisition VR
- Resident Evil 4 Remake
- Resident Evil Village
- Samurai Slaughter House
- Sim Kayak VR: Mirage
- Star Wars: Tales from the Galaxy’s Edge – Enhanced Edition
- The Dark Pictures: Switchback VR
- The Light Brigade
- The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners – Chapter 2: Retribution
- Zenith: The Last City
PSVR 2: news and rumors
PSVR 2 games are now available for pre-order
Alongside headset pre-orders, PSVR 2 games have begun appearing in the ‘Coming Soon’ section of the PlayStation Store, too. Interestingly, none of these games are being sold for the £70 / $70 price tag we’ve seen for big releases these last few years. The most expensive one is, unsurprisingly, Horizon Call of the Mountain at £60 / $60, with the rest coming in at much lower prices.
Sony reportedly producing two million PSVR 2 headsets for launch
A new report from Bloomberg (opens in new tab) suggests Sony is planning to produce two million PSVR 2 headsets by March 2023. Citing “people familiar with the matter,” mass production reportedly began last month and that it hasn’t faced supply chain bottlenecks like the PS5 has. When asked for comment, Bloomberg confirms Sony declined to respond.
State of Play reveals four new PSVR 2 games
Sony’s State of Play conference delivered for VR fans, showcasing four new PSVR 2 games. Alongside our first look at Horizon Call of the Mountain gameplay, the following confirmed games are: Resident Evil 4 remake, Resident Evil Village, No Man’s Sky, and The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners – Chapter 2: Retribution. Basically, we hope you like zombies.
Epic reveal Unreal Engine 5 projects for PSVR 2
During its ‘The State of Unreal (opens in new tab)‘ 2022 event, Epic Games revealed that several games are utilising Unreal Engine 5 for Sony’s upcoming headset. While we don’t know which games that includes, noted VR developers like nDreams were spotted among studios supporting this new engine.
Is Sony making inroads to social VR?
A trademark application, submitted in July 2021, suggests Sony might be considering bringing back its PlayStation Home service – an ill-fated social hangout space that was on the PlayStation 3.
Part chatroom, part Sims-like design app, PlayStation Home was closed in 2015. But the trademark hints at its return and, given the rise of social VR spaces, we wouldn’t be surprised if this is going to play a big part in Sony’s move into social gaming and virtual reality in the future.
PSVR 2 could take a step back from VR-only titles
According to a report from YouTube channel PSVR Without Parole (opens in new tab), PSVR 2 games could shift from VR-exclusive experiences. Instead, Sony might focus on “hybrid” titles that can be played with or without a PSVR 2 headset.
The report explains that PSVR 2 compatible titles could have two versions: the more traditional TV-based experience as well as a version that works in VR. This would mean players won’t have to download two versions of the game, and can essentially choose which version suits them best.
Motion Sickness Reduction Patent
A patent filed in 2019 and published on WIPO in 2020 points to efforts from Sony to reduce motion sickness in what could be a PSVR 2. The patent describes “a VR sickness reduction system, a head-mounted display, a VR sickness reduction method, and a program with which it is possible to further reduce VR sickness.”
Finding that much motion sickness in VR is caused by “a difference between the movement of the viewpoint and the user’s feeling in a situation where a moving image showing the appearance from the viewpoint is displayed on the display”, the patent posits a potential solution which appears to involve vibrations or oscillations.
The patent reads “An HMD (12) is provided with a display unit (38), which is disposed in front of the eyes of a user when the user wears the HMD (12). A shaking unit (42) can shake the head of the user wearing the HMD (12).
An entertainment device (14) causes the display unit (38) to display a moving image representing a view as seen from a viewpoint. The entertainment device (14) controls the shaking of the shaking unit (42) in accordance with the acceleration condition of the viewpoint for the moving image displayed by the display unit (38).”
The overall aim, it would seem, is to better unite what the player is seeing in the PSVR headset with what they’re feeling outside of it. Patents are never any guarantee of a final product, but this could be an insight into problems Sony is looking to overcome in any future iterations of the PSVR headset.
Good news for glasses wearers?
These Sony developed prescription glasses would be custom-designed for the wearer and gaze would be able to be detected by the VR headset via an encoded sensor. In other words, glasses-wearers could use VR much easier. We don’t expect these glasses to come cheap, but the implementation of eye gaze software does mean we might see it arrive in the PSVR 2.
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