Now that the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are available, with PlayStation VR set to release in October, the impact of Virtual Reality on the gaming industry is one of the most discussed topics among executives.
In a lengthy interview with GamesIndustry.biz, Daybreak's (formerly Sony Online Entertainment) Chief Publishing Officer Laura Naviaux Sturr voiced her opinion on the viability of this market. According to her, companies are over-investing in VR right now in an effort to be the first on the market, but VR won't be really mainstream for at least three to five years from now.
The reality is that people are probably over-investing right now in order to be first to market and take advantage of the novelty and nuance of it being a brand-new piece of tech and it probably won't come to bear for - if you read any of the analyst reports or what people are predicting - it's really going to take 3-5 years until it'll really be mainstream. And so in the meantime, people will over-invest, which isn't a bad thing because it's going to push the tech forward.
It's not surprising, then, that Daybreak is taking a "wait and see" approach to VR while experimenting with the technology.
We're paying a lot of attention, more than intrigued, experimenting, [and have] lots of conversations happening. But we also know what we do. We make online games, massively multiplayer online games... so I think we're trying to figure out how does this index against our core mission and our core values as an organization of what we build day in and day out and how does it augment that experience? And I think you'll start to see a lot of different [VR] genres emerge... Even looking at mobile, if you look at a list of the top ten genres on mobile they're ridiculous terms like endless runner. So I think you'll see a lot more of that happening in VR, where we hadn't even thought that this experience could be a game. And I think people are just fascinated by the potential of it and it's something we're taking a hard look at.
In other Daybreak news, DC Universe Online should be available for Xbox One really soon. Planetside 2 on PC also just received the highly anticipated Construction System update, allowing players to harvest resources and build bases.