Palmer Luckey, the inventor of the Oculus Rift, has his hands full; he and his team have been diligently working on their much anticipate VR headset for years. Demo kits are in the public’s hands, but when can we expect a commercial product? And will it come to consoles? He sat down with Tech Radar and answered those questions.
When Palmer was asked about the teams plans for next-gen integration, he had this to say:
Consoles are too limited for what we want to do. We’re trying to make the best virtual reality device in the world and we want to continue to innovate and upgrade every year – continue making progress internally – and whenever we make big jumps we want to push that to the public.
The problem with consoles in general is that once they come out they’re locked to a certain spec for a long, long time. Look at the PCs that existed eight years ago. There have been so many huge advances since then. Now look at the VR hardware of today. I think the jump we’re going to see in the next four or five years is going to be massive, and already VR is a very intensive thing, it requires rendering at high resolutions at over 60 frames a second in 3D.
More specifically, he was asked about the current resolution problems the Xbox One is having:
We’re seeing games that are already saying they’re gonna run in 720p on next gen so they can barely hit 60 in 2D. It’s hard to imagine them running a VR experience that’s on par with PC. And certainly five years from now the experiences and the technology for virtual reality that will be available on PC is going to be be so far beyond anything that a console can provide.
What we’re most excited about – really the core direction of our company – is trying to make something that works on platforms that are moving quickly and that are continuously getting more powerful, and consoles are not those.
He was also asked – rather tongue and cheek – about the teams relationship with Vavle and Gabe Newell:
We’re good friends with Valve. We’re great friends with them.
The consoles are fixed with their hardware, but Valve’s Steam Machine is more-or-less a PC; it can be upgraded and modded. Could we see the Oculus Rift function with Valve’s Steam Machine?