Sony released the PlayStation 5 near the end of 2020, and the console has been a huge success, becoming the best-selling console in the US.
Now, Sony has introduced its new VR system, the PS VR2.
PS VR2, or PlayStation VR2, is the aptly named successor to Sony’s original PSVR headset from 2016. And with the improvement in the performance of the PS5 over the PS4, the PS VR2 looks like a major step up.
READ MORE: Sony has opened up preorders for the PS VR2
We first learned about the existence of the new PS VR2 back in February. Since then, we’ve learned a lot about the upcoming VR headset through the company’s various patent filings, leaks, and revelations.
What is Sony’s PS VR2?
The PS VR2 is Sony’s next entry into the virtual reality gaming market. The company released the original PSVR back in 2016. The headset was received pretty well by PS4 gamers.
Now, Sony is stepping things up and utilizing the upgraded power of its latest console, the PS5, to bring an entirely new VR system to the console.
Sony is designing the PS VR2 system specifically for the PS5, taking advantage of everything the console offers.
PS VR2 consists of an all-new VR headset alongside newly designed controllers with tons of technology and features that could elevate console VR to a new level.
PS VR 2 release date
UPDATE 11/2/2022 10:28 AM ET: Sony announced the PS VR2’s release date. It launches on February 22, 2023, matching earlier rumors of the release window. Pre-orders go live on November 15.
A leak from the popular and generally reliable Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo suggests that Sony plans to start mass production of the PS VR2 in late 2022.
The report says that the company will produce around 1.5 million units in the second half of 2022, with a release date likely in early 2023.
And more recently, in August 2022, Sony shared an update with a release window.
Like Ming-Chi Kuo predicted, the company plans on releasing the PS VR2 sometime in early 2023.
That matches Kuo’s prediction of an early 2023 release and mass production beginning in late 2022. But we all know that gaming hardware releases don’t always follow schedules.
Hopefully, Sony isn’t being too bold with its early 2023 release window. We can’t wait to see what the next generation of PlayStation VR looks like.
The new PS VR2 headset
Maybe the most key piece of hardware that will come with the PS VR2 is a brand-new headset.
Sony has learned from the original PSVR and built an all-new VR headset with impressive specs.
In fact, Oculus founder, Palmer Lucky, recently got his hands on one and was “blown away” by Sony’s upcoming VR headset.
“I was blown away when I used PSVR 2 recently,” Lucky said in a response to a tweet from the head of PlayStation Indies, Shuhei Yoshida.
Sony’s PS VR2 features an impressive 4K resolution, a significant improvement over the 1080P resolution offered by the original PSVR.
Each lens will be 2000×2040 with a refresh rate of 120hz, bringing the headset in line with the PS5 console.
The headset will use a combination of foveated rendering and flexible scaling resolution to optimize resolution in areas of focus.
Eye trackers in the headset will track where you are looking, so the device can optimize resolution in that area.
The company is also adding a lens adjustment dial, so you can decide how far away the screen is. And, of course, there’s a vent to help ensure those screens don’t fog up.
Built-in motor and cameras
In addition to the upgraded 4K resolution, the PS VR2 has added other new technologies to deliver a better VR experience.
The headset will use built-in cameras to monitor hand and controller movements. This eliminates the need for any external equipment to track your hands.
A small rotary motor is also included in the headset to allow for small vibrations to increase game immersion.
For example, you might be able to feel your character’s pulse in suspenseful situations.
And Sony added all of this to the headset and still promises to deliver a lighter-weight device than the original.
Gamers don’t want to wear a heavy, bulky headset to play games, so it’s nice to see that keeping the PS VR2 headset light is a priority for Sony.
One convenient feature was revealed in July of 2022.
As revealed in a video from YouTube channel PSVR2 Without Parole, the PS VR2 will have a new cable setup. Sony’s VR headset will feature a single, detachable cable this time.
This might not seem like a huge deal, but it’s a significant improvement over the double cable setup of the original PSVR headset.
In addition to only requiring a single cable connection, the cable will be removable and replaceable.
With the original PSVR, a broken cable meant you had to replace the entire machine. But on PS VR2, if you break the cable, you can easily replace it with a new one.
Of course, there are limits. The cable will be a proprietary USB-C connection. That means you’ll have to use a specific cable instead of just any USB-C you have.
Still, it’s nice to know that breaking the cord on the PS VR2 won’t mean you’ll need to buy a whole new headset.
Embedded camera for 3D mapping and see-through view
In late July, Sony shared more details about its new headset. This time, the company gave gamers a first look at the PS VR2’s embedded front cameras.
The cameras are used for a see-through view and to map your playing area. See-through mode lets you see your surroundings while your headset is still on.
With the press of a button, you’ll be able to switch between seeing what’s on the screen and your surroundings.
Plus, the headset will use those cameras to map out your physical playing environment.
Using a combination of the embedded cameras and your PS VR2 controllers, you can quickly map out your gaming room to avoid running into furniture or other obstacles.
This update also included information on two other features: broadcasting yourself while in VR and cinematic mode for non-VR media on the headset.
You’ll be able to use a PS5 HD Camera to record yourself while VR gaming so you can share it with your friends.
Additionally, PS VR2 will include a cinematic mode for non-VR content.
That mode displays at 1920×1080, as opposed to the standard 4000×2040 (2000×2040 in each eye) in VR content.
PS VR2 controllers
In addition to the new headset, the PS VR2 system brings new controllers to the fold.
Designed with ergonomics in mind, the PS VR2 Sense controllers are a unique take that should feel pretty familiar to PlayStation fans.
Haptic feedback and adaptive triggers
Sony’s upcoming PS VR2 Sense controllers use a two-piece design to keep you moving freely inside of VR games.
And, like the DualSense controllers released for the PS5, they’ll both have haptic feedback and adaptive triggers.
Haptic feedback is a staple in most gaming controllers. And it would feel like something was missing if it wasn’t added to the PS VR2 Sense controllers.
With haptic feedback, controllers vibrate based on in-game stimulation, so every encounter feels more immersive.
As for adaptive triggers, that’s something that Sony recently introduced with its DualSense controllers. The triggers on the PS VR2 Sense controllers will react to players’ actions in-game.
For example, if you’re firing a weapon, the adaptive triggers could bounce back and provide various resistance levels to simulate a weapon’s kick.
Finger tracking and familiar button layout
Sony designed the PS VR2 with the best ergonomics possible in mind.
Players’ hands will slide comfortably through the circular design of the controller to rest in a sweet spot that fits the curves of your hand.
Additionally, the controllers feature a button layout that should feel familiar to both gamers. In addition to the adaptive triggers, each controller features three buttons and a joystick.
Two of those buttons are similar to the four shape buttons on the DualSense controller. And the final button on each controller looks to be an interface button.
The controllers also have finger sensors underneath where your hands will rest. These sensors will help tell which user is using the device. They’ll also help track the location of each controller.
What will power the PSVR 2?
Sony has tapped MediaTek to power the PSVR 2 headset. We had an earlier rumor to go on, but MediaTek just confirmed things at its own Executive Summit.
That’s the first time MediaTek has been put into a VR headset, which historically uses competing Qualcomm processors. The chips used in the PSVR 2 are custom and are used in several parts of the hardware.
That probably means at least one processor in the headset to handle the processing of the new-to-PSVR optical solutions and possibly one chip in each controller. With MediaTek powering roughly 70% of the smart TV market, it’s a safe bet the PSVR 2 visual quality will be impressive.
How much will the PS VR2 cost?
Earlier reports had pointed to the device being priced at or above $399.99, the initial price of the original PSVR headset.
Those were mostly accurate, as Sony will launch the PS VR2 for $549.99 in the U.S., €599.99 in the European Union, and £529.99 in the U.K.
What games will be available on PS VR2?
Of course, where would any VR headset be without games to play. There are hundreds of VR options for the original PS VR device.
But we don’t know if most of those games will have backward compatibility or not.
UPDATE 9/16/2022 1:30 PM ET: It has now been confirmed by Sony that original PlayStation VR games will NOT work with the PS VR2.
PlayStation recently revealed that the new PS VR2 headset would launch with more than 20 “major” titles already available. These titles will consist of both first and third-party games.
And we have already had a few games confirmed to be coming to the new platform.
Horizon Call of the Mountain is another entry to the popular Horizon franchise that was the first game announced for the upcoming PS VR2.
Another game currently in development for the device is Runner, an action racing game.
Other games confirmed for development on the PS VR2 include Low-Fi, a cyberpunk action game, and Samurai Slaughter House, a stylized action RPG.
During the Sony State of Play event in June 2022, the company revealed a few more games that will be coming to the PS VR2 headset.
The presentation revealed three new titles: Resident Evil Village, The Walking Dead: Sinners and Saints – Chapter 2: Retribution, and No Man’s Sky.
There are likely even more games already in development for the device.
Sony will likely plan the release of the PS VR2 so that there are plenty of games to enjoy. And 20+ “major” titles are definitely a good place to start.
UPDATE 1/20/2022: PlayStation revealed 13 new PS VR2 titles that are are coming with the PS VR2. It also shared a list of 37 games that launch within a month of the headset’s launch date. Dive deeper here: PS VR2 is launching with more than 30 games
New PS VR2 trailer revealed in September
As of September 22, 2022, Sony has released a new trailer highlighting Horizon Call of the Mountain gameplay, as well as some new details about the hardware.
Where can you order the PS VR2?
As of now, there’s no way to actually order the PS VR2.
Chances are, Sony will do a pre-order program through its website closer to when the headset comes out, but nothing has been announced yet. We’ll update this section when we hear more.
And that’s everything that we know about Sony’s upcoming PS VR2 for PS5.
We will continue to update this article as we learn more about the new virtual reality headset. But for now, the PS VR2 is starting to look like a pretty impressive device.
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