Sony looking to mainstream virtual reality gaming with Project Morpheus head-mounted display

By , Mar 19, 2014

Sony Project Morpheus (image 001)

The Game Developers Conference is running this week in San Francisco, where the Japanese consumer electronics giant Sony showed off a cool virtual reality headset.

Code-named Project Morpheus, the futuristic looking head-mounted accessory has a built-in five-inch LCD screen with full HD resolution (1,920-by-1,080) with a 90-degree field of view.

Three years in the making, Project Morpheus is packed with sensors like accelerometers and gyroscopes, works with the PlayStation 4 console and even lets players simultaneously use Sony’s DualShock 4 and PlayStation Move controllers…

Although the design and specifications of a prototype unit Sony demonstrated at the show are subject to change without notice, Sony Computer Entertainment audaciously stated in a post on the official PlayStation blog that Project Morpheus will shape the future of games by delivering 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”.

The system works in conjunction with Sony’s PlayStation Move and PlayStation Camera to help track both player movement and head orientation and includes a 3D audio technology which generates stereoscopic sounds and changes orientation in real-time.

“As your head rotates, the image of the virtual world rotates intuitively in real-time,” said Sony. First prototypes of the development kit were given to select PlayStation 4 developers to help develop new applications and games around it. An SDK will be released to developers in the near future.

The Verge remarks that the prototype units connect to the console and TV sets through HDMI and USB, but Sony is working on adding wireless connectivity. “The company says the headset doesn’t put weight on your nose or cheeks, and its design allows for airflow without the lenses fogging up,” the publication wrote.

Sony Magic Lab’s Dr. Richard Marks said his team has partnered with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab on a Mars simulator for Project Morpheus that will let PlayStation 4 users explore the red planet, with images and data straight from the Curiosity rover.

Companies like Epic Games, Crytek, Autodesk, Unity and others are also working on Project Morpheus apps and games.

Sony’s own technology demonstrations include EVE Valkyrie, a multiplayer dogfighting shooter that uses virtual reality to give you the sense of being a real pilot in an EVE Online spaceship, Thief, which lets you explore the dark shadowy world of the stealth action title, The Castle, that shows various VR interactions utilizing PS Move and The Deep, where you can observe the waters from inside a shark proof cage.

Apple has filed for some patents related to head-mounted displays but nothing concrete has emerged from these initiative thus far.

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  • Jason Baroni

    I have a friend who works at Sony Pictures. He says that every other Sony segment, like Sony Music, is holding Sony Eletronics, because S.E. is going deeply down to bankrupt. Lets just watch them.

    • Rowan09

      The gaming division is doing well, but that’s as far as it goes for Sony Electrionics.

      • Jason Baroni

        Gaming at Sony is really welcome, they do it great, but they are struggling to hold Eletronics. This is Eletronic’s biggest hope.

      • neoamaru

        last time i checked, the Xperia is doing well :/

      • Rowan09

        What do you consider doing well? I’ve never seen any sales figures.

    • Antzboogie

      What are you on? Sony is worth over 17,000,000,000+ Show some respect your sources are not very good ones PS4 is a beast.

      • Jason Baroni

        Aren’t my soucers good enough? They come from the inside of the company. Isn’t it good enough? Sony Pictures and Music presidents say it to everyone in there.

      • Antzboogie

        Nope why would leaders of Sony down talk their own company, lol.

      • Jason Baroni

        Because they are not integrated LOL

      • Antzboogie

        I meant to say their own company lol.

      • Jason Baroni

        These are the ones you trust on LOL

    • BreakingAwesome

      The thing is sony needs to boost there marketing. I a barely see sony ads anywhere these days. Even on youtube, all i see is samsung. Sony makes great products, a lot more better than samsung and there phones are very nice looking. They have great tvs, laptops and speakers. But no one will realize how good there product is unless ur a long time user of sony. If sony wants to do good they will need to obtain new customers and show off there products more. Online i only see apple or samsung and even sometimes google. U can even hear htc more often now. But why not sony? the hype for sony is finished unless the improve what they can market and increase the hype. Look how well apple does it. U have people waiting in line weeks before the phone is released. I love sony but they aren’t going to last well until they show off a new technology and sell it to the world.

  • iBanks

    I miss my Virtual Boy.

    • Rowan09

      I remember using that system by my friends house.

  • http://twitter.com/int3nsive Int3nsive

    Sony really knows how to design products with great quality.
    That’s why I still respect this brand as much I do with Apple.

    • Antzboogie

      Agreed.

  • Antzboogie

    Sony is doing great I support them. Read the first sentence in the article they are a,”consumer electronic giant” So ignore the haters I love XboxOne as well but its not my taste you dont see me bashing them.

  • blastingbigairs

    I loved my Walkman back when Rush was cool :(