The Oculus Rift VR headset could usher in a revolution for the gaming industry. Developer kits have been out for a while, and the first production version is slated to arrive later next year. The VR headset won't work with next-gen consoles like the Xbox One and PlayStation 4, though. Oculus Rift creator Palmer Luckey told Tech Radar that the latest consoles are "too limited for what we want to do."
One of the problems is insufficient horsepower. Despite sporting fancy new SoCs, the latest Xbox and PlayStation can't run every new game at 1080p. Battlefield 4, for example, is reportedly stuck at 720p on the Xbone and 900p on the PS4. And I doubt it maintains a steady 60 FPS on either platform. Smooth frame delivery is particularly important for VR displays that put the player right in the action.
Luckey also points out that we'll be stuck with the latest crop of consoles for a while. PC hardware already has a considerable lead, and it will only continue to get faster. "Five years from now," he says, "the experiences and the technology for virtual reality that will be available on PC is going to be be so far beyond anything that a console can provide."
What about Steam machines? Luckey wouldn't go into specifics, but he noted that Oculus is "good friends with Valve." Steam machines should be available with more potent hardware than the next-gen consoles, and they'll benefit from the continued advancement of PC technology. The latency optimizations Valve is incorporating in SteamOS could be especially beneficial for VR gear, too. Thanks to Rock, Paper, Shotgun for the tip.