Why Sony Has The “VR War” Already Locked Up After Price Announcement

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Here are your three main options for the first leap into the newest virtual reality headset movement: Oculus Rift ($600), HTC/Valve ($800), or Playstation VR ($400). Only one of these has the most AAA games available at launch, console ready coordination, and experience in the video game market exceeding the others, not to mention the cheapest price point.

You guessed it, the PSVR headset turned heads today with its shocking announcement of a price point at the market beating $400 mark. While many will have issues with the price point (I am not arguing for or against it as a good deal), what cannot be argued is that it is significantly cheaper than the other two options

Often when companies make something cheaper it means one of two things, either they used cheaper quality work, or they are dropping their percentage of profit in hopes of dominating the market. One example of when the latter of these two options worked was with another of these companies listed above. You guessed it, the answer again is Sony’s Playstation. At launch Sony lowballed the price of the Xbox One by a price of $400 compared to $500.

While I would love to give Sony credit for coming up with such a brilliant plan for beating out Xbox in the price cut, I believe we could look no further back than the launch of the PS3 to see where Sony might have learned their lesson. With the $600 price point on the PS3 at release, Sony put itself in a hole that they never really grew out of in the last generation slugfest between the PS3 and the Xbox 360. Since release PS4 has outsold Xbox One 2:1! That’s an amazing accomplishment in any market, but especially one as competitive as the video game wars.

Sony is taking what seems to be the same model for success they used in their most recent battle with Microsoft to the VR competition by releasing a competitive product at a drastically lower price in hopes that selling more units will allow them to dominate the market and keep prices higher for longer. How it will work is yet to be seen, but by all indications and reception today on social media outlets and news sites, it seems that PSVR has solid momentum from gamers and developers going into the release date this fall.

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Les Hughes
Les is the Husband and father of 2 (soon to be three). He has been playing games since childhood, getting his start with “Blades of Steel” and graduating through every system since then. He often fills his time hosting events for Dads Gaming where he is one of their community managers (dadsgaming.com). While he can often be found playing most FPS, he’s not afraid to jump into a good ole fashion RPG. Les has been writing professionally for four years after earning his masters degree is 2012. Any questions for him can be directed towards @LesGetGaming on twitter, /r/lghughes3 on reddit, or lesgetgaming@gmail.com.
About the author

Les Hughes

Les is the Husband and father of 2 (soon to be three). He has been playing games since childhood, getting his start with “Blades of Steel” and graduating through every system since then. He often fills his time hosting events for Dads Gaming where he is one of their community managers (dadsgaming.com). While he can often be found playing most FPS, he’s not afraid to jump into a good ole fashion RPG. Les has been writing professionally for four years after earning his masters degree is 2012. Any questions for him can be directed towards @LesGetGaming on twitter, /r/lghughes3 on reddit, or lesgetgaming@gmail.com.
  • Harold_Finch

    I think it is hilarious that you think the PS VR and the Oculus are the same thing. The Oculus is 200 dollars more for a reason.

    The PS VR is technically the RC Cola version of a vr headset

    • GeekGI

      After testing out the PSVR as well as the Rift, Sony’s $399 price point is a positively critical move in their favor. Mr. Finch, to elaborate on your contrasting position of the both the PSVR and Rift, while there are differences in specs, in reality the experiences are actually marginal. PC games which are taking full advantage of the Rift will undoubtedly have an edge in resolution and frame rate, however this article wasn’t written as a pissing contest of which device has the most horse power. Again, having utilized the PSVR at E3 and PlayStation Experience with various games, the Rift experience was far from offering a head and shoulder advantage based on the games Sony had on tap. What I believe this article is indicating is the fact that the VR space has three major players and Sony happens to offer the most affordable VR device of the three – leverage that with Sony’s PS4 marketshare momentum and by the time October (PSVR launch) swings around, there could be more than 45 million PS4’s in the wild. This could equate to Sony grabbing more VR marketshare, in fact, though Sony just announced the price point and aunch window of PSVR, the devices is currently sold out at Amazon and Amazon UK at the moment. Oh and for the record, the Oculus Rift and the PSVR are the same thing, with slight variants in how they can be used. The main difference will be in how Sony and Facebook plan to leverage them for their respective consumers.

      • Harold_Finch

        And that is just it, the framerate is too demanding for such a console as the ps4.
        You can see the conflict now, framerate or resolution, pretty textures or responsive gameplay?

        I have used them both as well and i can see what you mean but the Oculus has the 3d tech in the eyes doesn’t it? Ir didn’t feel like the PSVR had that, it felt flat in comparison.

    • LesGetGaming [DADS]

      Finch. thanks for your reply. I don’t dispute that you’re getting more for your money with the Oculus. Its a superior piece of hardware. Looking back at the release of the XB1 and the PS4 I believe there was more to offer with the XB1 in terms of functionality and a wide range of use, but because of the price difference, many people wrote off those perks because of their desire to save a buck for a lesser product. Pricing is a tough thing to do, which I am sure you know, but I think there is a space for both the Oculus and the PSVR due to those who will not end up owning a PC and be looking for an option for their PS4. Then again it could also go the way of Motion controller and end up in most people’s cabinet so who knows? You know?

      PS. I was the author of this article.

      • Harold_Finch

        Thanks for the argument, always nice to receive something constructive instead of being called a “whore.” I am thinking back to the release of the Kinect, i just don’t think we console gamers have the miliseconds to turn in the headset while we have a tv that can be turned on with the flick of an on button from the remote control.

        It will sell gangbusters until the halt, it will change the industry but i am seeing a push for 4d tech in the home after it. E.g. the feeling of VR without actually wearing any.