Spec Analysis: PlayStationVR 2 – a shot in the arm for high-end virtual reality gaming • Eurogamer.net

Spec Analysis: PlayStationVR 2 - a shot in the arm for high-end virtual reality gaming • Eurogamer.net

We have known this has been happening for some time. Sony’s initial press and controller images were quickly supplemented with leaked specs, now fully fleshed out via an announcement from Jim Ryan himself at CES 2022, along with more details from the PlayStation Blog. PlayStationVR 2 is now official and promises to be extremely exciting. In fact, from our perspective, high-end VR games in general need a boost in a world where the Oculus Quest 2 on mobile reigns supreme and the success of PlayStationVR 2 is our best chance that it happens.

The specs reveal a headset that pushes the limits in many directions, building significantly on the successes of the first PSVR, dramatically improving screen fidelity, enhancing immersion, and ridding the rig of the complicated setup. which has proven to be so frustrating for PS4 owners. On that last point, PSVR2 should literally be plug and play: there’s no breakout box, no external camera, no mixing of various USB and HDMI cables – everything is routed through USB-C, which means that PSVR2 just needs to plug directly into the front of the console and you’re good to go.

The lack of an external camera or any kind of additional tracking gear is because Sony took inspiration from the Oculus book, using reverse tracking to provide a more immediate, intuitive experience, with four internal cameras used to get the job done. . We would still expect the player to be forced to set up a play area in an initial calibration sequence, but beyond that it should be straightforward. Perhaps the best news is that the new VR controllers seem to follow the basic design of Oculus Touch very closely, which we rank as the best VR interface. These connect via bluetooth and we expect to see them included in the box. This may have financial implications, but based on the specs, it looks like Sony is sparing no (realistic) expense.

Digital Foundry’s Rich Leadbetter, John Linneman and Alex Battaglia share their thoughts on the PlayStationVR 2 reveal.

PlayStationVR 2 PlayStationVR Host System PlayStation 5 PlayStation 4 / PS4 Pro Display type OLED / HDR – 90 / 120Hz OLED / SDR – 90 / 120Hz Resolution 2000×2040 per eye 960×1080 per eye Field of view 110 degrees 100 degrees Sensors Accelerometer, Gyroscope, Sensor proximity IR Accelerometer, gyroscope Cameras Four for headset and controller tracking – two IR for eye tracking One (external) Internal motor feedback None USB-C interface USB / HDMI via breakout box

It starts with the internal display. After the 960×1080 per eye of the first PSVR, Sony has almost quadrupled the resolution with 2000×2040 per eye for its successor. Not only that, but the platform owner has also decided to stick with OLED displays at a time when many HMD vendors – including Oculus – have moved to LCD displays instead. The OLED offers great contrast, but it also opens the door to HDR support, which we believe is a first in a mainstream headset. There’s no telling how effective HDR will be – no peak brightness levels are revealed, for example, but it’s an exciting development nonetheless.

It’s also good to see that Sony has kept the same 90Hz and 120Hz panel support that the first PSVR got, as that opens up a range of options. Developers can target games at 90 fps – which is fine – or push harder for a full 120 fps refresh. However, the 120Hz mode also opens the door to running games at 60fps and then using the ‘time warp’ technique to run games more easily. Essentially, as the game runs at 60, actual movement is updated at twice that refresh rate, based on your head movement.

Half-Life Alyx remains the standard-bearer for high-end VR experiences – and PlayStationVR 2 could offer a brilliant port of these must-see experiences.

Sony has also included a single motor in the design of the PSVR2 headset to (hopefully) convey subtle feedback to the user – the PlayStation blog is about the feel of an object moving through your head, or the pulse of your head. increased heart rate. In addition to this, haptics is also built into the new controllers as well as adaptive voltage on the triggers. This last point is an example of the DualSense controller that I don’t particularly like (basically I don’t think pulling a trigger to shoot a pistol should have friction and isn’t particularly fun) but it has more to do with it. makes sense in virtual reality, where the manipulation of objects is supposed to seem much more “real”. In terms of haptics, Sony’s work with 3D audio – itself based on techniques championed in the first PSVR – should transition perfectly to the new headphones.

There are also other aspects of the specification that caught my attention. First, the all-important field of view is now enlarged to 110 degrees from the roughly 100 degrees of the first PSVR – a spec point that puts the new headset up there with all top performing HMD PCs. Another pleasant surprise is the support for eye tracking, with two internal cameras monitoring your pupils to see exactly where you are looking. This works hand in hand with foveal rendering, which is the process by which rendering resolution is highest where the eye is focused, with resolution decreasing in peripheral vision. It remains to be seen how this will be implemented – Variable Rate Shading (VRS) would work well here, but level two support for this feature in the PlayStation 5 GPU is missing. Alternatively, software support (as seen in the IW8 Call of Duty engine) might work well, although this technique is not suitable for many game engines.

Ultimately, from what we’ve seen so far, the spec is excellent. This increases our hopes that high-end virtual reality experiences can be considered. The truth is, the proliferation of Oculus Quest 2 has essentially seen the lion’s share of VR development focus on a mobile-class device, to the detriment of the capabilities of the PC and other high-end hardware. Looking back, we were hoping to see Half-Life Alyx usher in a new era of cutting-edge VR experiences – but that never really happened. Perhaps the eventual arrival of PSVR2 combined with a reasonably sized PS5 installed base could make all the difference.

Here’s the brief Horizon Call of the Mountain teaser, running on PlayStation 5 and PSVR2.

And honestly, launching PSVR2 with a port of Valve’s VR masterpiece would be a stroke of genius – and it would be in everyone’s best interest to use this game to send a signal of what a system. High end VR could provide. As it stands, Sony has chosen to deliver the smaller of the teasers with Horizon Call of the Mountain to give an idea of ​​what PSVR2 will offer. Collaboration between Guerrilla Games and Firesprite, one has to wonder if there is a certain sharing of assets between Forbidden West and this new VR offering. While Half Life Alyx’s “built from the ground up” approach is ideal, spin-out VR modes or smaller games exploiting the extreme fidelity strengths of existing triple-A titles seem to be a good one. approach to provide high-end. virtual reality titles that wouldn’t break the bank to develop.

Ultimately, what has been revealed so far for PSVR2 is exciting and advanced enough to make us wonder how much Sony is going to charge for the package, keeping in mind how competitive it is against the best. PC hardware. A price of $ 399 looks bullish, while $ 499 would be the hard limit. On the flip side, Oculus Quest 2 currently sells for $ 299, has VR controllers included, and has an entire minicomputer – something PSVR2 won’t need – so maybe there’s a margin. financial maneuver to deliver high quality material along the lines that Sony is offering.

The other big question concerns backward compatibility with the existing PSVR library. On the one hand, we have to remember that the PlayStation 5 is already hardware compatible with the existing headset – so you will be able to continue playing these games. However, it would be good to play these legacy games on the more modern headset. On the one hand, the required 90Hz / 120Hz display support is there. On the flip side, the complete overhaul of the follow-up – along with very, very different controllers – suggests that it might be a bit of a stretch to expect older games to work on the new kit. This is a device designed for the future of virtual reality – and we can’t wait to see what Sony has in store for us.

Article source https://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-2022-spec-analysis-playstationvr-2-a-shot-in-the-arm-for-high-end-virtual-reality-gaming


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