It's impossible to look cool while playing with the PlayStation VR. Darren Weaver/Business Insider If you askFacebookandGoogle, the "next big thing" is virtual reality — the technology that lets you put on a headset and get transported into a amazingly lifelike digital world.
The best reason to get into virtual reality at this point is to play incredible, immersive video games. But, up to this point in the short history of VR, the most premium games have been limited to people with a lot of extra cash to burn.
Facebook's high-end Oculus Rift headset is $600 plus another $200 for its nifty motion-tracking controllers ; the HTC Vive Pre is $799. In both cases, you should be prepared to drop $1,000 or more on a Windows PC powerful enough for virtual reality. (Google and Samsung have cheaper headsets, but those cell phone-based set-ups can't match the horsepower of full-fledged systems).
Enter theSony PlayStation VR. Launching on October 13th for $399, the PlayStation VR brings a virtual reality experience competitive with (but not quite as powerful as) what Facebook and HTC have to offer. And not only is it cheaper, it plugs right into every one of the 40 million Sony PlayStation 4 consoles that have already been sold.
I've been playing with the Sony PlayStation VR for the last few days. And I have to say, while it's still the very beginning of the would-be virtual reality revolution, Sony has come up with something incredibly promising, especially considering how easy and relatively inexpensive it is to get started.
And with big-ticket games like "Batman: Arkham VR," cult hits in the making like "Until Dawn: Rush of Blood," and fun multiplayer action games like "RIGS: Mechanized Combat League" coming exclusively to PlayStation VR, it's going to have a major league up in the war for your wallet.
Here's what it's like to use the PlayStation VR.
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Let's get the elephant out of the room out the way, first: The PlayStation VR may only cost $399, but it doesn't come with everything you need to get started.
Darren Weaver/Business Insider (The other elephant in the room: It's impossible to look cool wearing these. You get over it or you don't.)
In addition to the headset itself, you'll need the PlayStation Camera, a $50 or so accessory that sits on top of the TV. It handles head- and motion-tracking. You literally can't use the PlayStation VR without one.