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5 Years of PlayStation VR: Celebrating the Games and What’s to Come

What a year 2016 was. It seems so long ago now considering all that’s happened within the XR space in that time but one facet has remained consistent, Sony Interactive Entertainment’s (SIE) PlayStation VR. The third consumer headset to launch that year after Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, it may have arrived late in the year but thanks to that PlayStation 4 connectivity and some excellent exclusives soon dominated the field. Five years later and it has yet to be updated, with SIE celebrating today by revealing the most popular titles and a little treat in store for PlayStation Plus members.

PlayStation VR: The Games

Thanks to PlayStation VR being far more affordable than its PC VR rivals and the fact that so many people had a PlayStation 4, SIE sold more than two million in a little over its first year on sale. That figure rose to 3 million in 2018, surpassing 5 million by early 2020. Needless to say, those figures attracted developers and in the early years PlayStation VR had its pick of VR exclusives.

Over 500 videogames and experiences are currently available for the headset with PlayStation Blog confirming today the most popular titles globally as well as by region. If you’re a VR fan – especially a PlayStation one – then there are few surprises on this list.

Globally: Most-Played PlayStation VR Games

  • Rec Room
  • Beat Saber
  • PlayStation VR Worlds
  • The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR
  • Resident Evil 7 biohazard

By Region: Most-Played PlayStation VR Games

  • Europe: Rec Room, PlayStation VR Worlds, Beat Saber, The Elder Scrolls: Skyrim VR, Resident Evil 7 biohazard
  • North America: Rec Room, Beat Saber, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR, Job Simulator, Firewall: Zero Hour
  • Japan: Resident Evil 7 biohazard, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR, PlayStation VR Worlds, Beat Saber, Gran Turismo Sport

Beat Saber is the hugely popular multiplatform rhythm action videogame owned by Facebook and consistently finds itself at the top of PlayStation VR’s download charts each and every month. When it comes to exclusivity then it is all about Capcom’s Resident Evil 7 biohazard. Its flatscreen cousin is multiplatform but the VR version never saw a wider release, probably helping to sell a few PlayStation VR’s in the process.

And to celebrate this momentous event, in November PlayStation Plus members will be getting three PlayStation VR bonus games for free. SIE hasn’t revealed which ones just yet though.

Plus there’s much more to come! PlayStation VR owners have the likes of Wraith: The Afterlife – Oblivion, Wanderer, Zenith: The Last City, Moss: Book II, Captain ToonHead Vs The Punks From Outer Space and many more on the horizon.

PlayStation VR: The Future

As mentioned, five years in the XR industry has seen massive developments with SIE’s rivals going through several generations of headsets, from tethered through to all-in-one (AIO), and new features like hand tracking. PlayStation VR has yet to catch up but as you should be very well aware of by now, that next step is in the works.

The launch of PlayStation 5 has been a big success for SIE with over 10 million units sold. While PlayStation VR can connect to the new console via a free adaptor everyone wants to know about PlayStation VR 2 (no official name yet). All that’s been shown so far are the new “orb” controllers, with finger tracking for natural hand gestures and adaptive triggers allowing players to feel certain elements of a videogame.

When it comes to the headset itself no images have been released just yet. Specifications have been reported on, sporting Fresnel OLED displays, providing a resolution of 2000 x 2040 per eye, HDR (High Dynamic Range) and a 110-degrees field of view (FoV). Plus there will only be one singular cable to deal with, no breakout box with additional wires to deal with.

Unfortunately, SIE hasn’t said when PlayStation VR 2 will arrive, just that it won’t be in 2021. Reports have suggested next year. On the upside, some developers have already started confirming projects for the new headset with Maze Theory’s Engram, Vankrupt Games’  Pavlov Shack and Truant Pixel’s anime-inspired Runner.

That does mean PlayStation VR’s lifespan is coming to a close, with October 2022 possibly the last hurrah for SIE’s first VR endeavour.

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