Virtual reality is quickly becoming the standard when it comes to gaming, however, the initial excitement seems to have been tempered with high costs and lack of game variety.
While systems like Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR, HTC Vive and Samsung Gear experienced high demand during their launch, a number of gamers have found that performance without a high-end PC and lack of games to be major setbacks.
These issues have plagued the systems to the point where their sales have stagnated and financial forecasters have significantly lowered their sales estimates for VR.
Gamers have found the cost to be a major hurdle with VR.
While most VR systems can run from $500 – $1,000, the costs of upgrading a PC so it can handle the increased performance requirements of VR is a major hindrance.
Likewise, even if gamers have a high-end PC and enough disposable income to purchase the VR system, a lot of them are disappointed by the lack of games.
Most launch VR titles focus around experiences, or specific linear stories, instead of the open worlds gamers have gotten used to.
The titles have been described as mere demos and, as most gamers know, a system lives and dies by its titles.
More so, game developers have been hesitant to invest in VR due to the high cost of development.
Most VR enthusiasts are hoping that as developers get used to working with the systems and development kits, more open-ended and triple A games will make it to the VR marketplace.
With these major drawbacks keeping VR out of reach for most mid-tier gamer’s, a lot of people are reassessing their thoughts on the future of gaming.
A large portion of the population thinks that the future could lie in augmented reality, which differs from VR in that it only applies filters to your surroundings, a lot like Pokémon Go.
Microsoft has already gotten a head start on this by launching the HoloLens, a wearable device capable of streaming digital objects onto the physical world.
In simple terms, instead of playing on an actual TV, a gamer could create a digital TV that’s 100 inches and then play a game on that.
While the system won’t be out for several months, an initial prohibited high cost is expected to be a major issue for the system.
The channels through which gamers play video games is ever evolving.
While systems may come and go, the good games are what will always keep people coming back.
Most gamers will still lovingly pull out their original Nintendo to play through The Legend of Zelda despite the graphics being decades behind modern games.
Unless the VR finds a hit title soon, it could find itself going the way of Nintendo’s Virtual Boy.
And, while augmented reality has Pokémon Go, unless they launch the platform with games that are exciting enough to offset the high cost of entry, they’ll experience a similar fate to VR.