If you own a PlayStation 5, you can now pair it with the latest and greatest virtual reality headset, the PlayStation VR2 (PSVR2). With this VR headset, you can truly immerse yourself in games and use motion controllers to fight, climb, and race. While the PSVR2 is the best in its class, its game selection is currently limited.
The first PlayStation VR was compatible with the PlayStation 4 but was a hodgepodge of cables that required you to sit in front of your TV to play properly. The accompanying motion controllers also performed poorly compared to PC-based competitors.
The PSVR2, on the other hand, is a much simpler device. You only need to plug it into your console with one USB-C cable, and everything works seamlessly. The built-in cameras in the headset detect your surroundings, ensuring you don’t run into any walls or furniture. It’s more user-friendly than the first PSVR and matches the level of ease-of-use offered by competitors like the Meta Quest 2 and Valve Index.
When it comes to visual quality, the PSVR2 is the most advanced headset in its class. With a resolution of 2000 x 2040 per eye, it’s like having a 4K TV for your eyes, making the game worlds look absolutely stunning. The high resolution also eliminates the “screen-door effect,” which occurs when you can see the space between pixels, creating a grid-like pattern over the game.
The PSVR2 also tracks the position of your eyes to determine where you’re looking. Games can use this information to render that specific area of the game world in more detail, resulting in more beautiful VR experiences. Typically, VR games are less visually impressive because they need to render the entire environment around you in high resolution. However, eye-tracking allows games to be more selective in what they load in higher detail.
Impressive New Game: Horizon: Call of the Mountain
All these technological innovations are immediately noticeable when playing Horizon: Call of the Mountain, a new VR game developed in the Netherlands. In the first level, you navigate a phenomenally beautiful, colorful jungle, and the game takes you through one stunning mountainous landscape after another. While other VR games often fall short of traditional titles, Horizon feels like a genuinely modern game.
Gameplay-wise, Horizon is an amalgamation of elements from smaller VR titles, brought together to create a larger, more immersive experience. For instance, you move through the game world by climbing, similar to The Climb, and use a bow and arrow like in Elven Assassin. However, whereas those games provided smaller experiences that lasted only a short while, Horizon’s amalgamation feels like a much more substantial game
The PSVR2 controllers are similar to those of its competitors. You hold a small device in each hand, and the cameras on the headset track their location. This allows your hand movements to be replicated in virtual reality. However, what makes the PSVR2 unique are the special triggers that use motors to provide a more realistic sensation. Pulling the trigger on a gun in-game feels more authentic thanks to this feature.
Both controllers can vibrate, but the headset itself can also simulate vibrations. This adds a new dimension to gaming and can make you feel like you’re truly part of the game world. The buttons and sensors on the controllers attempt to track the position of your fingers, allowing you to make hand gestures in VR. However, this feature is more precise in the Valve Index, which can detect individual finger movements regardless of whether you’re pressing buttons.