This is one of the questions that many still had about the PlayStation VR2 – and to which we had not found an answer during our hands-on experience with the headset a few days ago. Backwards compatible, not backwards compatible? The answer finally came from the mouth of Hideaki Nishino, Sony Interactive Entertainment vice president in charge of hardware, in an episode of the “official” PlayStation podcast. Patatras: it is negative.
In concrete terms, it must be deduced that the PS VR2 cannot be used to launch first-generation PS VR games, while the PS5 is indeed backwards compatible with PS4 games. This obviously frustrates players who had skipped Sony’s very first virtual reality headset, and who hoped to be able to access the entire catalog with the new generation model.
Too many technical differences between the two helmets
However, from a technical point of view, this lack of backward compatibility is understandable without too much difficulty given the major differences in the design and operation of the two headsets. And Nishino to justify himself by asserting that “PS VR2 is designed to provide a truly next-gen experience”from which it follows that “Developing games for PS VR2 requires a totally different approach”.
Behind these relatively vague words, we readily imagine that the greatest difficulties are on the side of the new Inside-out motion detection technology (via the cameras placed directly on the helmet, and no longer a camera placed at the level of the television) , which would not allow use of the DualShock 4 or PlayStation Moves required by PS VR1 games. These two control methods also cannot be transposed 1-for-1 to the Sense controllers of the PS VR2 – even if it were possible, the mismatch between the controls displayed in games and the controllers physically held in the hand by the player would be problematic. Finally, it should be remembered that the external camera tracking system is natively integrated into the PS VR1 games, in particular for everything relating to the options for calibrating the headset and controllers; functions that again could not have been translated directly to the PS VR2 system.
We still hope to see most of the most popular PS VR1 games appear on PS VR2, but this will require relying on the developers, as well as their willingness and ability to make native ports of their games. for the next generation headset. It will then be up to the publishers to decide on the sales policy; it is of course hoped that they will be offered at no additional cost – or at least that the latter will be as low as possible – to owners of earlier versions.
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PlayStation VR2 headset will not be compatible with PS VR1 games
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