Virtual Reality on Sony’s Agenda

Real Life 2.0

Ah, virtual reality, a pipe dream for gamers ever since the Holodeck, an augmented alternate world and the ultimate escapist fantasy. Well, the future is here and despite advancements in motion controls, high-definition graphics and 3D displays, we remain thoroughly disconnected from our gaming worlds, separated by a television, a comfy chair and a plastic controller.

“Curses,” you murmur, “now I’ll never be immersed in the horrors of war from my own living room.” Well, hold your horses right there. According to an interview with Sony’s Mick Hocking, virtual reality is on track  for a potential comeback. Though VR has long floundered in the tech labs of universities rarely as little more than pioneering experiments, deep in the bowels of Sony’s nefarious underground headquarters, scientists are busy splitting the atom and colliding particles in an effort to make reaching out to touch your favourite characters and grasp the Sword of Undoing +10 a plausible commercial venture.

Okay, so the experiments aren’t that exciting, but if Hocking is to be believed, Sony are certainly taking it seriously. Speaking to Develop, when asked if virtual reality was “coming back”, he said: “Yeah it could be, it certainly seems possible, and these head-mounted displays incorporate 3D tech. It’s very, very cool. And obviously it’s a fantastic way to experience 3D because both images are being directly fed into each eye.”

Hooray! Soon, we'll all look like Geordie from Star Trek.

At the CES in January of this year, Sony demonstrated a prototypical head-mounted 3D display to rave reviews. Of course, it’s not exactly full-sensory “virtual reality” where we can move about and feel at our own leisure, but it’s a step in the right direction.

On the development of this concept, Hocking added: “At the moment…the head isn’t being tracked – but that’s something we’re doing R&D on. I have to say, what we’ve done in the R&D projects has just been fantastic.”

It’s a little hard to say when such head-tracking VR technology will be available to the general public. In fact, it’s terribly hard to say. Will it be an integral part of the PlayStation 4 when it releases sometime within the next three years? Possibly, but unlikely. A Move-like add-on perhaps? Again, it’s next-to-impossible to call. But if we don’t have virtual reality by the mid-’20s,  I shall be most disappointed and certainly surprised.

In the meantime, we can all cross our fingers in hope that Sony’s 3D headset ends up under the Christmas tree. Please?


Comments
One Response to “Virtual Reality on Sony’s Agenda”
  1. Shouldn’t be too hard to do, add in a treadmill to ‘walk’ on and Move-like weaponry. Make it good single player, than make it work online and it’ll rock. Plus, there’s another game thing where you have to move a floating ping-pong ball with your mind. Combo that up and Matrix isn’t very far away, my friends.

    All I know is “Neo” better not be taken when I get my copy mentally installed…

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