The hype train for E3 is already rolling. Oculus jumped aboard this week with the announcement of its pre-E3 event.
The June 11 press event has the tagline “Step into the Rift.”
Before we speculate about what could be at the press event, let’s cover what we know.
Oculus Rift is coming in the first quarter of 2016
Oculus announced the consumer version of the Rift will be coming early next year. When exactly? Oculus didn’t go into further details, but you should expect it sometime between January and March.
This can make or break any new gadget. All we know is that it will cost more than the $200 Gear VR.
Get ready to upgrade your computer
VR gaming will be demanding. Oculus released the recommended hardware specs in a blog post last week. Here are the basics:
NVIDIA GTX 970 / AMD 290 equivalent or greater
Intel i5-4590 equivalent or greater
Two USB 3.0 ports
Atman Binstock, Chief Architect at Oculus, also touches briefly on the Rift specs. “On the raw rendering costs: a traditional 1080p game at 60Hz requires 124 million shaded pixels per second. In contrast, the Rift runs at 2160×1200 at 90Hz split over dual displays, consuming 233 million pixels per second. At the default eye-target scale, the Rift’s rendering requirements go much higher: around 400 million shaded pixels per second. This means that by raw rendering costs alone, a VR game will require approximately 3x the GPU power of 1080p rendering.” (emphasis mine)
Binstock stressed the recommended specs will be “held for the lifetime of the Rift and should drop in price over time.”
What should we expect at the June 11 event
The tagline “Step into the Rift” suggests an event focused entirely on the experience side. I expect a lot of games to make an appearance. We might also hear more about a firm launch lineup of titles.
EVE: Valkyrie is set for launch, but what else? Oculus is going to need that killer app for the Rift to be a mainstream success.
As for a pricing announcement? I’m going to file that under ‘maybe.’ Oculus still has plenty of time before release to drop that news. I won’t be surprised one way or the other.
I’m most pumped to see dedicated games developed on final Rift hardware.
What do you want to see the most? Games? Price? In-depth specs?
On the topic of price, how much is too much? The Oculus DK2 costs $350. $300 would be a solid price point. $400 would be pushing it for me.