Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. has announced the development of “Project Morpheus” − a virtual reality (VR) system that takes the PlayStation 4 to the next level of immersion and demonstrates the future of gaming.
“At SCE we view innovation as an opportunity to build on our mission to push the boundaries of play,” said Shuhei Yoshida, President of SCE Worldwide Studios. “Project Morpheus is the latest example of innovation from SCE, and we’re looking forward to its continued development and the games that will be created as development kits get into the hands of content creators.”
Morpheus enables developers to create experiences that deliver a sense of presence – where players feel as though they are physically inside the virtual world of a game. Presence is like a window into another world that heightens the emotions gamers experience as they play.
Featuring a visor style head-mounted display which works seamlessly with the PlayStation Camera to deliver a unique VR experience right before the player’s eyes. Inertial sensors built into the head mount unit and PlayStation Camera accurately track head orientation and movement so as the player’s head rotates, the image of the virtual world rotates naturally and intuitively in real-time.
Furthermore, in supporting games, the player can use a PlayStation Move Motion Controller as an object, such as a sword. Morpheus will reproduce the player’s hands and sword within the game so the player feels like they are physically fighting off enemies with their sword in the virtual world.
Morpheus adopts 3D audio technology uniquely developed by SCE. In addition to sounds coming from front, behind, left and right, re-creating stereoscopic sounds heard from below and above the players, such as footsteps climbing up stairs below them, or engine noises of helicopters flying overhead. Sounds that players hear change in real-time depending on their head orientation, creating a highly realistic audio environment within an immersive 360-degree virtual world.
Along with PlayStation Camera, Wireless Controller for PS4, and PS Move, Morpheus will deliver immersive breakthrough entertainment experiences to gamers through the PS4 system, leveraging SCE’s expertise across key areas for VR – including display/optics, audio, tracking, control, ease of use, and content.
Developers will be able to create Morpheus content for PS4, via a dedicated SDK which is currently under development and will become available when ready.
During the Game Developers Conference 2014 held in San Francisco from March 19th through March 21st, attendees could visit the Sony Computer Entertainment America booth to have a hands-on experience with Morpheus showcasing a EVE Valkyrie tech demo, Thief gameplay and two Sony in-developments; The Castle and The Deep, where players can observe the waters from inside a shark proof cage.
Sony has committed to continue development of Morpheus looking towards a future commercial launch soon.