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Spilled PSVR 2 headset secrets point to big feature buffs, hybrid games

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TL;DR

  • New details of Sony’s upcoming VR headset for the PlayStation 5 have leaked from a private developer conference.
  • The headset, tentatively named the PSVR 2, may sport an upgraded display, new controllers, and buffed headset hardware.
  • The VR headset may also introduce a new hybrid games model, giving gamers the option to download and play the traditional or VR version of titles.

Sony teased details of its upcoming PSVR 2 a few months ago but mainly focused on controller specs. Now, alleged details from a private Sony development meet have shed new details on the system as a whole.

The conference, which took place on August 3, was first reported by YouTube channel PSVR Without Parole (via UploadVR). You can watch the video in full below.

PSVR 2: Hardware improvements

PSVR 2 may sport an upgraded, denser OLED display with 2,000 x 2,040 resolution per eye. Paired with HDR support, this should improve visuals in leaps and bounds over the 1,920 x 1,080 display on the original PSVR. The PSVR 2 display also reportedly gains a 110-degree field of view, up from the original model’s 100 degrees.

This new hardware is backed up by software, too. The PSVR 2 will reportedly use flexible scaling resolution, redistributing rendering power, and improving detail based on the user’s focus. Foveated rendering, which adjusts rendering workload following the position of the user’s eyes. These two features will reportedly place less strain on the PlayStation 5, improving game performance when used together.

As for feedback, there’s a “rotary motor” used within the headset itself, per the leak. Thanks to Sony’s March reveal, we’ve already seen the controllers, but it’s now apparent they will have capacitive sensors for the thumb, middle, and index fingers. This should go a long way to improving individual finger tracking and giving users more natural control over game characters. Adaptive triggers also feature.

Interestingly, the new hardware may come with a switch in Sony’s game distribution philosophy too. Per PSVR Without Parole, Sony wants developers to give users the option to play games traditionally on display or the PSVR 2. Users wouldn’t have to commit the game version they want as both formats will be available to download. It’s a big change for users but for developers too, who would have to consider building games that suit traditional and VR play. Either way, this “hybrid games” model could be essential for the mass success of VR on consoles in the future.

There’s no word on if the PSVR 2 can play original PSVR titles. Given the added need for processing grunt, it also seems unlikely that the system will be usable with the PS4.

PSVR 2: When will it launch?

So when is the PSVR 2 launching? For now, there’s still no word from Sony itself. Notably, the company is still referring to the system as NGVR (Next-Gen VR). The company is planning to announce launch details in “early 2022,” though.

Given the success of the PS5 as a standalone unit, Sony doesn’t need to rush the development of its system. It remains the only console player with a capable VR headset, especially as Microsoft stated it has no plans to delve into the space. If you can’t wait, the original PSVR is compatible with the PS5, and you can still grab one for around $560.

What do you make of the new PSVR 2 details? Let us know in the comments.

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