Sony Worldwide Studios President Shu Yoshida officially introduced Project Morpheus ($249-299 targeted price), a Virtual Reality (VR) System for PS4 today at the Game Developer Conference (GDC) 2014 with details below!
To quote: Greetings from GDC 2014! Earlier this evening, I had the pleasure to introduce Project Morpheus, SCE's prototype virtual reality (VR) system that works with PS4. Virtual reality is the next innovation from SCE that we believe will shape the future of games.
I have long dreamed about VR and the possibilities it brings in regards to game development. This new technology will deliver a sense of presence, where you as the player actually feel like you're inside the game and your emotions feel that much more real.
Our current prototype for Project Morpheus features a head mounted display with 1080p resolution and a 90 degree field of view. Accelerometer and gyroscope sensors built into the head mounted unit as well as PlayStation Camera accurately tracks head orientation and movement, so as your head rotates, the image of the virtual world rotates intuitively in real-time.
Project Morpheus also features our new 3D audio technology that re-creates stereoscopic sounds in all directions and changes in real-time depending on your head orientation. In addition to PlayStation Camera, Project Morpheus works with DUALSHOCK 4 Wireless Controller and PlayStation Move to deliver an easy-to-use, plug-and-play VR experience.
The prototype for Project Morpheus is the culmination of our work over the last 3+ years as we've refined our vision for VR. This prototype will serve as the first development kit for PS4 developers that are as enthusiastic about this new medium as we are.
At GDC 2014 this week, attendees will be able to check out Project Morpheus in action at the SCEA booth through a handful of technology demos.
Finally, from Sony's official Press Release, to quote:
SONY COMPUTER ENTERTAINMENT ANNOUNCES “PROJECT MORPHEUS” − A VIRTUAL REALITY SYSTEM THAT EXPANDS THE WORLD OF PLAYSTATION 4 (PS4)
With Project Morpheus and PlayStation Camera, Games will Immerse Players in Virtual Worlds, Delivering a Sense of Presence in Gaming Never Before Possible
Tokyo, March 19, 2014 - Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCE) today announced the development of “Project Morpheus” (Morpheus) − a virtual reality (VR) system that takes the PlayStation 4 (PS4) system to the next level of immersion and demonstrates the future of gaming. SCE will continue development of Morpheus looking towards a future commercial launch.
“At SCE we view innovation as an opportunity to build on our mission to push the boundaries of play,” said Shuhei Yoshida, President of SCE Worldwide Studios. “Project Morpheus is the latest example of innovation from SCE, and we’re looking forward to its continued development and the games that will be created as development kits get into the hands of content creators.”
Morpheus enables developers to create experiences that deliver a sense of presence - where players feel as though they are physically inside the virtual world of a game. Presence is like a window into another world that heightens the emotions gamers experience as they play.
Morpheus features a visor style head-mounted display and works seamlessly with PlayStation Camera to deliver a unique VR experience right before the player’s eyes. Inertial sensors built into the head mount unit and PlayStation Camera accurately track head orientation and movement so as the player’s head rotates, the image of the virtual world rotates naturally and intuitively in real-time.
Furthermore, in supporting games, the player can use a PlayStation Move (PS Move) Motion Controller as an object, such as a sword. Morpheus will reproduce the player’s hands and sword within the game so the player feels like they are physically fighting off enemies with their sword in the virtual world.
Morpheus adopts 3D audio technology uniquely developed by SCE. In addition to sounds coming from front, behind, left and right, Morpheus re-creates stereoscopic sounds heard from below and above the players, such as footsteps climbing up stairs below them, or engine noises of helicopters flying overhead. Sounds that players hear change in real-time depending on their head orientation, creating a highly realistic audio environment within an immersive 360-degree virtual world.
Along with PlayStation Camera, Wireless Controller for PS4, and PS Move, Morpheus will deliver immersive breakthrough entertainment experiences to gamers through the PS4 system, leveraging SCE’s expertise across key areas for VR – including display/optics, audio, tracking, control, ease of use, and content.
Developers will be able to create Morpheus content for PS4, a platform which has sold over 6 million units only after 3 months and a half of its launch, and is continuing to show strong momentum. The Morpheus dedicated SDK is currently under development and will become available when ready.
During the Game Developers Conference 2014 held in San Francisco from March 19 through March 21, attendees can visit the Sony Computer Entertainment America booth to have a hands-on experience with Morpheus, which will be exhibited for reference.
Attendees can enjoy exclusive technology demo such as EVE Valkyrie (CCP), a multiplayer dogfighting shooter that uses virtual reality to give the player the sense of being a real pilot in an EVE Online spaceship, Thief (SQUARE ENIX Co., LTD.), which allows players to explore the dark shadowy world of the stealth action title, “The Castle” (SCE) that shows various VR interactions utilizing PS Move, and “The Deep” (SCE), where players can observe the waters from inside a shark proof cage.
Specifications of “Project Morpheus” Prototype
Component: Processor unit, head-mounted unit
Display Method: LCD
Panel Size: 5 inches
Panel Resolution: 1920xRGBx1080 (960xRGBx1080 per eye)
Field of View: 90 degrees
Sensors: Accelerometer, Gyroscope
Connection interface: HDMI + USB
Function: 3D audio, Social Screen
*Specifications and designs are those of the prototype and are subject to change.
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