Shuhei Yoshida, president of Sony Worldwide Studios, has confirmed the anticipated development and future production of PS4 VR headset, under the name of Project Morpheus. During the presentation at the GDC convention entitled, Driving the Future of Innovation at Sony Computer Entertainment, he explained that the VR headset is the next step in technology to be offered from PlayStation that may shape the future of gaming and entertainment.
Yoshida presented the prototype by playing a series of demonstrative videos with God of War and Datura. Both displayed the progression of the VR technology with visuals of what the projected VR headset is to look like over the next few years. Starting tomorrow, Project Morpheus will offer testing of its virtual reality system linked to the new PlayStation 4 at the GDC.
Yoshida said that Morpheus will provide an ease of use to its gamers. With the release of this industry-driving technology, he also stated that, “We’d like to invite passionate and creative developers to innovate with us.” The GDC is where gamers and technology innovators can grasp new improvements and even novel electronic entertainment equipment. Even for Yoshida, head of one of the top innovators in the industry, said the convention, “Is where I can get a snapshot of what’s new and trending in the industry.” Since the early days of Atari’s quintessential game “Pong”, the industry has grown by promoting technological advancement that many would have neither expected nor felt were possible.
Sony has been developing and testing the VR headset for over three years. However, as told by Yoshida, it is not the final product that will be manufactured. “We believe Morpheus will further enhance the world of PS4,” he said. The headset encompasses seamless integration with the PS4 system that includes an easier use of the handheld controller and Move controller.
Other tech specs of the prototype include a 1080 P display, which can support a user moving their head in a full 360 degree motion with continuous, crystal-clear transition. Furthermore, Sony had created a special technology to incorporate up to 60 speakers to aid developers to create a riveting audio experience to give to its anticipated consumers. For example, if a passenger plane files overhead, the sound will move in similar way to how it is interpreted in real life.
Moreover, “presence” will be a key factor in the development of the VR headset, Sony developers explained. The notion is to experience the feeling as if the user was in the game, rather than playing it form a third-person perspective. One of the main technological advances Sony has been improving is 3D audio. With the VR headset, sounds will come from the directions that they should be in the game whilst playing.
One of the struggles that has been voiced is that the headset needs to be user-friendly. Sony is trying to build a device that does not come with specialized drivers which need to be installed – a welcomed factor by many. As well, Sony is making sure that the comfort factor is well-devised, insofar as users may adjust the device to one’s head with ease.
Sony defines Project Morpheus as the “God of dreams.” That is a lot to live up to. A boost in sales is critical for the company as Sony anticipates a $1.1 billion loss of the next year as it works to mend its stressed and struggling television and personal computer enterprises. So far, consumer demand for the new PlayStation 4 has been strong, with unit sales over the six million mark since its launch in November. While Sony develops the most advanced gaming system ever seen in the industry, gamers and entertainment enthusiasts alike will be waiting for the completion of the much-anticipated Project Morpheus.
By: Alex Lemieux