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Oculus founder: "No existing or imminent VR hardware is good enough to go mainstream".

IbizaPocholo

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https://www.gamesindustry.biz/artic...ardware-is-good-enough-to-go-truly-mainstream

VR pioneer Palmer Luckey has said that no currently announced VR hardware is good enough to appeal to mainstream - even at a price of "$0.00," the existing and imminent headsets would fail to engage a big enough audience.

In a blog post titled "Free isn't cheap enough," the founder of Oculus VR argued hardware sales as a "meaningless metric" for judging the success of VR. That can only be measured through engagement, Luckey said, which is "the number of people logging in and spending money each week."

"Recent market experiments with cheap VR hardware have shown that there are millions of people willing to buy said hardware, but very few among them continue to use the hardware or invest in the software ecosystem for very long," Luckey said, apparently referring to lower priced headsets like Oculus Go.

"This is true even when people get the hardware for free - the millions of cardboard boxes fulfilling their ultimate destiny on the back shelf of a closet don't do much for the VR industry. Why the lack of use?"

The reason for that, Luckey said, is "quality of experience," the very area that VR companies have compromised on to make lower-priced headsets available. These headsets can help to expand the audience for VR, Luckey said, "but not to nearly the degree many people would expect."

"I want to take this a step further and make a bold claim: No existing or imminent VR hardware is good enough to go truly mainstream, even at a price of $0.00," Luckey continued. "You could give a Rift+PC to every single person in the developed world for free, and the vast majority would cease to use it in a matter of weeks or months.

"I know this from seeing the results of large scale real-world market testing, not just my own imagination - hardcore gamers and technology enthusiasts are entranced by the VR of today, as am I, but stickiness drops off steeply outside of that core demographic.

"Free is still not cheap enough for most people, because cost is not what holds them back actively or passively."
 

AV

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I think the problem is more that the public just don't care that much. I've borrow a Vive from work sometimes to show people I know who otherwise aren't interested in tech, and they think it's great, but not a single one of them would want to own it. Way too complicated for the average Joe, way too much hassle to store and set up, not enough practical applications outside of games.
 

seph1roth

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The main problem with VR is software, i can count with 1 hand the games (not tech demos) that uses VR nativelly in a good way.

Resident Evil 7 was a good start for great VR games but that was all, only Sony cared with Astrobot.
 

Catphish

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Maybe he's right, but I still say that the day we have wireless, lightweight, 4k headsets is the day VR really takes off, assuming the software is there.

I really want to use my Rift more than I do, and I would if what I mentioned was reality. It gets uncomfortable for me after about an hour, the cord is a pain in the ass, and I strain to see distant objects. This makes it difficult for me to spend time with it, even with the really good apps.
 
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hariseldon

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I love my Rift but tbh he's right. It's not ready yet. And S seph1roth is also right, much of what's out there is utter turd. Superhot VR is amazing, my racing games and Truck Sim games are amazing, Elite Dangerous is amazing as an experience though the game is still shit, but mostly it's utter turd. Add the inconvenience factor (I have to keep the kittens out of the man-cave due to wires/risk of stepping on a kitten) and lack of sociability and it's a bit of a problem. Those things are things that can be solved as miniaturisation (can't spell that for shit) improves and batteries get good enough for a wireless experience (and wireless latency is solved) but for now it's a niche for people like me.
 

General Lee

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Software follows good hardware. The current crop of VR devices are cumbersome and expensive. There's so many areas of improvement to make in VR yet, but the price of improving it won't be cheap. 4K screens with no SDE, wider FOV, wireless, lighter, inside-out tracking, all of this needs to happen. At the same time GPUs aren't improving in perf/$ and we'll need things like foveated rendering to reach acceptable performance levels and visuals. Next gen console VR is going to be the deciding moment in how well VR gets adopted in the mainstream, but it still won't have half of those needed features by default. Oculus' mobile VR doesn't really matter beyond watching VR porn. To really push VR where it needs to be there's no other option than a high end PC, even outside gaming. Businesses aren't that price sensitive, but they do need all the convenience features. The reality is that VR is going to remain in the premium niche for a long time, outside Oculus Go type media viewers that are practically a totally different category.
 

MayauMiao

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VR is too much of a hassle to use. The wires, limited playing area, requiring beefy set up while still looks graphically bad, expensive, is simply just a huge turn off.
 

DarthBuzzer

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I think the problem is more that the public just don't care that much. I've borrow a Vive from work sometimes to show people I know who otherwise aren't interested in tech, and they think it's great, but not a single one of them would want to own it. Way too complicated for the average Joe, way too much hassle to store and set up, not enough practical applications outside of games.
Do the same thing with an Oculus Quest and things might be different.
 

Fuz

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No shit.

Everybody was freaking out and I was telling how disappointing it was gonna be ages ago. Somebody give me a high paid job as an analyst, quick!
 
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DarthBuzzer

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Palmer is pretty much right. Remember he is talking about mainstream on the level of smartphones, meaning billions of devices. That won't happen for a long time. To get there we need sunglasses that do both VR and AR, which are near retinal resolution, human FoV, track your full body and all expressions, has foveated rendering, is a standalone, has no vergence accomadation issues, and uses haptic gloves and bare hands for interfacing.
A lot of that can be achieved in the next 4 years or so, but haptic gloves and sunglasses will likely bring the total to 10-15 years.

So mainstream at the smartphone level is probably going to happen around 2030 onwards.

Mainstream at the gaming console level will likely happen around 2025 - it just requires 2nd gen features and specs in a standalone headset.
 

Fuz

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Maybe he's right, but I still say that the day we have wireless, lightweight, 4k headsets is the day VR really takes off, assuming the software is there.
The controls, first and foremost, and the need to tune down graphics are the problem. The day we'll have something similar to Ready Player One is the day it will take off.
 

NahaNago

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The controls, first and foremost, and the need to tune down graphics are the problem. The day we'll have something similar to Ready Player One is the day it will take off.

That's like at least like 40 years away.
 

LordMuffin

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I’ve recently spent a weekend with a friend who owns a Vive and aside from the novelty of the experience there are some non-negligible negative aspects to it.

First of all, it was really uncomfortable, even after extensive adjustments the visor either pressed against the bridge of my nose or felt like it’s about to fall off. Secondly, the resolution it’s quite low and some written texts requires a lot of squinting to be made out.
Last, and most importantly, the games developed explicitly for VR feel rather shallow or gimmicky while ports such as Skyrim are majorly clunky to be operated normally.

I think that resolving the comfort aspect would be a major step forward for a more widespread adoption of the technology, not considering the steep prices and powerful hardware required.
 
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Tesseract

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i dunno i think vr is pretty fucking awesome, maybe it's because i got a gtx 1080 ti and a vive pro?

space pirate trainer at max settings on a pro is a majestic experience, you're literally transported into another dimension
 

DarthBuzzer

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That's like at least like 40 years away.
Not even close. We'll have surpassed Ready Player One in about 10 years. And yes, I say surpassed.
Ready Player One boils down to the following: A visor that projects onto the retina with a human FoV and retinal resolution, haptic gloves, treadmills, haptic suits, photorealistic avatars and graphics.

Waveguides get us to the Ready Player One visor with a human FoV, and in 10 years, we'd be at least close to retinal resolution. No retinal projection there, but it doesn't matter.
Haptic gloves will likely be standarized within 10 years, as Oculus suggests.
Haptic suits were only optional in RPO, and will be optional in our reality as well. Teslasuit is not far off from the RPO suit.
Treadmills need a lot more work, but 10 years could be doable, and again, are optional in the context of RPO.
Photorealistic avatars and graphics are a given. We're not that far off from this, as this could likely be achieved in 4-7 years.

So, it's highly probable we will have most of what RPO offers in 10 years, but with one addition: mixed reality. RPO never touched on this, but all VR headsets will have mixed reality capabilities as time goes on, which allows them to surpass the fictional headset.
 
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hariseldon

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i dunno i think vr is pretty fucking awesome, maybe it's because i got a gtx 1080 ti and a vive pro?

space pirate trainer at max settings on a pro is a majestic experience, you're literally transported into another dimension

I only have a 970 but it's still an amazing experience. I basically don't need to do track days anymore. The oculus welcome thing with the robot blew my tiny mind when I tried it - things like waving at the robot to get its attention - whole new modes of interaction, the potential is amazing. L LordMuffin isn't wrong though about comfort issues etc. I disagree about fonts - I manage to successfully read the info box while iRacing with no difficulties so I know if people are getting closer etc. Getting comfort right is a bit of a faff btw but there is stuff you can do, in terms of strap setup, etc, but it really ought to be better - it's all a bit too bulky right now.
 

NahaNago

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Not even close. We'll have surpassed Ready Player One in about 10 years. And yes, I say surpassed.
Ready Player One boils down to the following: A visor that projects onto the retina with a human FoV and retinal resolution, haptic gloves, treadmills, haptic suits, photorealistic avatars and graphics.

Waveguides get us to the Ready Player One visor with a human FoV, and in 10 years, we'd be at least close to retinal resolution. No retinal projection there, but it doesn't matter.
Haptic gloves will likely be standarized within 10 years, as Oculus suggests.
Haptic suits were only optional in RPO, and will be optional in our reality as well. Teslasuit is not far off from the RPO suit.
Treadmills need a lot more work, but 10 years could be doable, and again, are optional in the context of RPO.
Photorealistic avatars and graphics are a given. We're not that far off from this, as this could likely be achieved in 4-7 years.

So, it's highly probable we will have most of what RPO offers in 10 years, but with one addition: mixed reality. RPO never touched on this, but all VR headsets will have mixed reality capabilities as time goes on, which allows them to surpass the fictional headset.

I can agree with most of what you said except for the bolded. That was what I thought would take so long. That level of graphics and possible immersion their is no way that would be possible for mass market any time soon.
 

shark sandwich

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I’ve been saying all along, VR gaming is something gamers only think they want, but they don’t really want it.

It’s exactly like stereoscopic 3D and motion tracking. How many people said “3D will really take off when it’s glasses-free and works from any angle”, or “Kinect will really take off when you can do lag-free 1:1 controls in any lighting condition or room size”?


Uhh no, there’s still the question of whether people will actually want that once the novelty factor wears off. And the bottom line is that IMO the vast majority of gamers would rather sit on their ass and press buttons than strap a headset on, move their head/neck around, possibly stand up/pantomime, and be cut off from their surroundings.

VR is best suited for short, novelty arcade-like experiences. It’s never going to be a significant chunk of the gaming market.
 

Tesseract

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I only have a 970 but it's still an amazing experience. I basically don't need to do track days anymore. The oculus welcome thing with the robot blew my tiny mind when I tried it - things like waving at the robot to get its attention - whole new modes of interaction, the potential is amazing. L LordMuffin isn't wrong though about comfort issues etc. I disagree about fonts - I manage to successfully read the info box while iRacing with no difficulties so I know if people are getting closer etc. Getting comfort right is a bit of a faff btw but there is stuff you can do, in terms of strap setup, etc, but it really ought to be better - it's all a bit too bulky right now.

ya, seems like anyone on a gtx 970 or above is gonna have a great time. my other rig runs that card and it's a great experience, so i dunno what the hate is.
 

Fuz

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I’ve been saying all along, VR gaming is something gamers only think they want, but they don’t really want it.
Do you remember, around PS1 era, when the industry was all "WE NEED TO DO EVERYTHING 3D TO LOOK BETTER"?
We're pretty much in the same scenario.

 
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DarthBuzzer

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I can agree with most of what you said except for the bolded. That was what I thought would take so long. That level of graphics and possible immersion their is no way that would be possible for mass market any time soon.
You'd be surprised. This is research Oculus has been doing and it's already outdated:

This is their most recent research:
They believe that photorealistic avatars might be doable within 4 years, but certainly won't be far off if that doesn't hold up.

Likewise, graphics are going to get better very fast. Foveated rendering will ensure that there is no longer a gap between VR and non-VR games. In fact, when real-time raytracing is used in VR, combined with foveated rendering, VR games will easily outpace non-VR in graphics, resolution, framerate. While real-time raytracing at 4K 60 FPS on a monitor could be 10+ years off, it's likely only ~7 years off for VR even at very high resolutions.
 
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DarthBuzzer

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I'm talking about the interface, mostly.


I really doubt it.
Keep in mind Moore's law, the uncanny valley and the incredible complexity of a real scenario.
See above to see what I mean. This is all a consumer goal for ~2022.

Moore's Law won't cause much of an issue for a while, because of foveated rendering. Cutting 20x of the pixels out of rendering and 20x of ray samples in raytracing would provide unparalleled increases in performance. It would be like the days of early 3D games using frustum culling which is now in every 3D game and engine.
 

DarthBuzzer

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I’ve been saying all along, VR gaming is something gamers only think they want, but they don’t really want it.

It’s exactly like stereoscopic 3D and motion tracking. How many people said “3D will really take off when it’s glasses-free and works from any angle”, or “Kinect will really take off when you can do lag-free 1:1 controls in any lighting condition or room size”?


Uhh no, there’s still the question of whether people will actually want that once the novelty factor wears off. And the bottom line is that IMO the vast majority of gamers would rather sit on their ass and press buttons than strap a headset on, move their head/neck around, possibly stand up/pantomime, and be cut off from their surroundings.

VR is best suited for short, novelty arcade-like experiences. It’s never going to be a significant chunk of the gaming market.
You should stop putting a label on things, especially since you don't understand the reality of the situation. VR and 3D / motion tracking is nothing alike. The difference in potential between the three are unparalleled. The potential of 3D ends very quickly; it's a ceiling comparable to a Hobbit home. The ceiling for VR might as well be a space elevator in comparison.
 

Fuz

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Well, yeah. No point in rendering the entirety of the 'horrible' looking graphics, afterall.
That was just a joke. Anyway, my biggest gripe is the man-machine interface. That's what curbed my enthusiasm when I played VR games. Still amazing for driving and flying simulators, toh.
 

Blam

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That was just a joke. Anyway, my biggest gripe is the man-machine interface. That's what curbed my enthusiasm when I played VR games. Still amazing for driving and flying simulators, toh.
I mean and FPS's as well. War Dust is immense fun it's in every way Battlefield VR, and it runs great for 32v32 matches.
 

Mattyp

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Meanwhile sony with its Headset is laughing all the way.

Laughing about what? The attach rate is shit house.

The tech still isn't there thinking about 2025 when we're full wireless, 4K+, lighter headsets, universal good control scheme.

Even then I don't see this being much more than a small part of the market.
 

dirthead

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Even though "Palmer" is right about this, it really goes to show what a two-faced toad he is. When he was still at the top of the heap at Oculus, VR was going to take over the world. Now that he's on the street corner, suddenly the truth comes out.

Man, what a scumbag.

Even then I don't see this being much more than a small part of the market.

It won't be. No one wants to strap phone screens to their eyeballs. It never had a chance. To add insult to injury, there still isn't a single compelling exclusive game that couldn't be done better via traditional means.
 
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DarthBuzzer

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Even though "Palmer" is right about this, it really goes to show what a two-faced toad he is. When he was still at the top of the heap at Oculus, VR was going to take over the world. Now that he's on the street corner, suddenly the truth comes out.

Man, what a scumbag.



It won't be. No one wants to strap phone screens to their eyeballs. It never had a chance. To add insult to injury, there still isn't a single compelling exclusive game that couldn't be done better via traditional means.
If you're talking right now, sure. Long-term, you'd be absolutely insane to be against sunglasses that give you superpowers. No one will reject that unless they are already a luddite.

As for your exclusive game claim, it's totally false. Lone Echo / Echo VR is the perfect example that you cannot argue against. I can go on listing game after game if you really want.
 

dirthead

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If you're talking right now, sure. Long-term, you'd be absolutely insane to be against sunglasses that give you superpowers. No one will reject that unless they are already a luddite.

As for your exclusive game claim, it's totally false. Lone Echo / Echo VR is the perfect example that you cannot argue against. I can go on listing game after game if you really want.

No dude. Just no. Lone Echo is barely a step above Dragon's Lair. Where's the gameplay? You could do the same game on a normal monitor with a mouse and keyboard. There is nothing (that isn't superficial bullshit) that couldn't be done there. Stop pretending that trash = system seller.
 

DarthBuzzer

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No dude. Just no. Lone Echo is barely a step above Dragon's Lair. Where's the gameplay? You could do the same game on a normal monitor with a mouse and keyboard. There is nothing (that isn't superficial bullshit) that couldn't be done there. Stop pretending that trash = system seller.
Either you're trolling or have never played it. It's an immersive story exploration game, so there isn't much action or anything, but that doesn't matter because the other side (Echo VR) has already proven that it works very well with fast-paced gameplay in an FPS game and in a disc-based sport game.

Please though, tell me how any of the actual mechanics of the game are even remotely possible without VR? They are completely impossible, end of story.

I never said it was a system seller. You're putting words into my mouth.

Maybe you should go work for Slant Magazine? I hear they love to trash universally acclaimed games for no actual reason, like yourself.
 

dirthead

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Either you're trolling or have never played it. It's an immersive story exploration game, so there isn't much action or anything, but that doesn't matter because the other side (Echo VR) has already proven that it works very well with fast-paced gameplay in an FPS game and in a disc-based sport game.

Please though, tell me how any of the actual mechanics of the game are even remotely possible without VR? They are completely impossible, end of story.

I never said it was a system seller. You're putting words into my mouth.

Maybe you should go work for Slant Magazine? I hear they love to trash universally acclaimed games for no actual reason, like yourself.

Like I already said, the game doesn't have any mechanics that aren't superficial bullshit. You might as well say that Wii game waggle can't be reproduced with a keyboard and mouse even though it was just a convoluted way of taking a superficial action. I really want to emphasize this: dicking around with levers, hitting buttons, and pushing around objects is not interesting gameplay. You can abstract all that kind of menial crap out into simplistic one button context sensitive actions, and nothing is lost. There is no MEAT to that gameplay.

People are so easily bowled over by gimmicks it's comical.
 

Blam

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Meanwhile sony with its Headset is laughing all the way.
The fuck? Sure 2 million sold but how many are actually buying more things or even using it more. If you'd like to know I searched up and it's fallen under the same attach rate issue that Oculus Vive, are having.
 

DarthBuzzer

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Like I already said, the game doesn't have any mechanics that aren't superficial bullshit. You might as well say that Wii game waggle can't be reproduced with a keyboard and mouse even though it was just a convoluted way of taking a superficial action. I really want to emphasize this: dicking around with levers, hitting buttons, and pushing around objects is not interesting gameplay. You can abstract all that kind of menial crap out into simplistic one button context sensitive actions, and nothing is lost. There is no MEAT to that gameplay.

People are so easily bowled over by gimmicks it's comical.
Movement is superficial? Clearly every game needs to be static then.

Solving puzzles is superficial? Lets get rid of all puzzles in gaming then.

Interacting with characters is superficial? Lets get rid of all character interaction then.

Wii waggle isn't even remotely similar to VR controllers. Are you really being serious here?

Please never give advice to any developers, otherwise you might cause the downfall of the industry.
 

Aintitcool

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Laughing about what? The attach rate is shit house.

The tech still isn't there thinking about 2025 when we're full wireless, 4K+, lighter headsets, universal good control scheme.

Even then I don't see this being much more than a small part of the market.
The fuck? Sure 2 million sold but how many are actually buying more things or even using it more. If you'd like to know I searched up and it's fallen under the same attach rate issue that Oculus Vive, are having.
Playstations VR headset sold as much, more quicker and has more stable software sales than Occulus and they were the first. Vive is doing the best but it also costs more, and with less users PSVR sells more software than valve.

Also the PSVR headset is underpowered (especially on regular ps4) and not as high rez or framerate as advanced. Yet people are still having fun, and doing full playthroughs of Resident Evil 7 on it. (As it is PSVR exclusive)
 
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Wonko_C

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Don't bother with the trolls guys, they'll never listen. Just go play Tetris Effect and chill. It's nirvana. :D
 
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Hissing Sid

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VR is like sex with a new partner. At first it’s all exciting and you just can’t get enough.... Fast forwards six months and taking your clothes off is just too much effort. I mean it’s still nice and all but ya’know, effort. Time for a good book or the telly.

The human mind is brilliant at blandifying the amazing, which is just as well really as otherwise we’d all be walking around agog at the blue sky and fuck all would get done.

I love my PSVR and have had some cool experiences with it. I still fire it up occasionally but it will never occupy my entire gaming time.
 

ThatOneGrunt

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idk. There are times where I'm blown away by the immersion of VR games. And that's with current RIFT hardware.
 

Three

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The fuck? Sure 2 million sold but how many are actually buying more things or even using it more. If you'd like to know I searched up and it's fallen under the same attach rate issue that Oculus Vive, are having.
It's sold 3 Million not 2. There is 21.9M PSVR software sales too but they may be inflating that with games that have VR support, not sure. The software attach rate for PSVR is actually pretty high.
 
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mckmas8808

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No shit.

Everybody was freaking out and I was telling how disappointing it was gonna be ages ago. Somebody give me a high paid job as an analyst, quick!

Except it's not disappointing at all! Unless a person thought VR was going to be the main way we all played games. That was never the goal and honestly, never should be the goal.