Sony Group Corp. announced an exclusive game for its next-generation virtual reality headset, dubbed PSVR2, charging up the platform’s appeal just as metaverse hype intensifies.
The Japanese entertainment and electronics giant introduced a teaser video for the title, from hit in-house franchise Horizon, while unveiling PlayStation VR2 with an upgraded headset and VR2 Sense controllers. Promising increased visual fidelity, head and eye tracking as well as vibration feedback built into the headset, the new hardware targets ever greater immersion and could prove among the popular gateways into metaverse offerings from the likes of Epic Games Inc.
Horizon Call of the Mountain, developed in part by Sony-owned Guerilla Games, will be among the first to tap into the increased capabilities of the new PSVR2, with studio director Jan-Bart van Beek writing that the game “has been designed to push hardware technology, innovation, and gameplay,” in a blog post. It will build on the success of action role-playing title Horizon Zero Dawn and expand the fantasy universe with a new environment and playable character, according to the developers.
Sony’s next-generation wired gaming goggles, which plug into the PlayStation 5 home console, will feature OLED panels with increased resolution from the first generation and a maximum refresh rate of 120Hz. The company didn’t elaborate on the headset’s pricing and release date.
The original PlayStation VR headset was released in 2016 as a PlayStation 4 peripheral and went on to become one of the best-selling products in its category. Sony is gearing up for the incoming successor to be a larger success. Enthusiasm for metaverse concepts that expand to immersive experiences beyond games may help drive interest.
Still, Sony’s release of the new product may be challenged by chronic chip shortages and supply chain disruptions that have pushed electronics companies and automakers to delay or cut back production plans several times over the past year. Delivery times for chips rose again in December to more than 25 weeks, the longest wait time since tracking began in 2017.