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Shuhei Yoshida

Yoshida: Films and More Will be ‘very important’ to PlayStation VR

The Oculus Rift and Gear VR virtual reality (VR) head-mounted displays (HMDs) have already been used for plenty of applications outside of videogames. Many people see the advent of VR films to be just as exciting as playable titles, for example. When it comes to PlayStation VR, Sony Computer Entertainment’s (SCE’s) upcoming HMD for the PlayStation 4, you might think that nongaming VR content won’t play much of a role. But, according to SCE Head of Worldwide Studios Shuhei Yoshida, that assumption would be wrong.

PlayStation VR headset

Yoshida said as much in an interview with Fortune. “It’s going to be very important,” he replied when asked what role nongaming VR content would play with PlayStation VR. “I’m a huge fan of the 360-degree videos and experiences that those entertainment companies and new startups are producing. They clearly understand the impact and the power of this new medium. People feel like they are in these experiences at the places that the video was shot instead of watching it remotely from within their console at home. The power of these mediums can be communicated in nongaming form.

He continued, noting that this variety should help PlayStation VR succeed: “And actually in many cases it’s better to have these experiences, rather than just games, so that the mass audience will start to notice that, “Wow, this is something that I should be checking out. This is way more than the new form of gaming.” VR could be the new form of learning, or knowing, or understanding the world better. And hopefully VR will improve some people’s health as well. So a lot of people will start to see this tech show up, whether they are looking for it or not. These nongaming applications will play a huge role to help promote all new VR systems,” Yoshida concluded.

Expect to see plenty of VR content other than videogames come to PlayStation VR in the future, then. The kit is set to arrive in the first half of 2016. For the latest updates on it, keep reading VRFocus.

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  1. Sorry, but I just don’t see it. It seems to me like VR video is a novelty, or a gimmick. It’s awkward and inconvenient compared with conventional video — like taking everything bad about 3D TV and multiplying that. Plus, to me it isn’t “VR” in any meaningful sense if you can’t move around freely and interact with the environment. So what’s the point?

    VR makes sense for putting the user into dynamic, simulated environments, including (but not limited to) games. A movie doesn’t meet that criteria, and neither does a concert or a sporting event.

    1. VR live action events and movies will be huge. The current state of the market is indeed 360 videos but this is merely the first step in the evolution. There are companies that are engineering innovations that will allow movement and content interation. The true promise of VR is upon us…just because it has not been done yet does not mean it cant be done. Sometimes it just means it hasnt been done YET!

      Until the iPhone came out we really didnt realize the true power of what a phone could be.

      VR has yet to have that point of inflection or “iPhone moment”…its coming for sure!

    2. Have you tried watching “Assassin’s Creed Syndicate – Jack the Ripper 360° Trailer” in VR? Even using Google’s cardboard it was impressive. While it is true that you had no control on the movement of the camera, the ability to look in any direction, such as behind the camera or under it, were very nice. Trying to follow the knife as it flu next to your face was nice to experience!

      Surprisingly, I didn’t feel sick as the camera moved across the scene, somehow knowing that I had no control over the position of the camera but has full control over its orientation, was acceptable to my mind. It made me feel as if I am watching events that took place and I have no control over them. It was a nice experience that I enjoyed even though it wasn’t a game 🙂

      And I do look forward to other types of VR applications, especially educational and travel applications!

      1. to gave an example: it felt the same as when you are in the passenger seat of a car, you have full control over where you look, but have no control over where you will move to and/or how fast!

  2. There’s no way video can truly be VR since the viewer won’t have control of location. The 360-degree video experiences can be immersive, but again, will not be a true VR experience as it would be “on rails” at best. But though gimmicky, I think it could still provide entertaining experiences as traditional film provides. I think the 360-degree 3D experience suits the documentary film moreso than others.

  3. @Zobeid, It’s funny, as soon as someone opens their mouth to talk VR you can tell right away the ones who’ve never tried it.

    “It seems to me like VR video is a novelty, or a gimmick. It’s awkward and inconvenient compared with conventional video — like taking everything bad about 3D TV and multiplying that.”

    It seems to you? How can it seem to you if you have no clue what you’re talking about? Give it a try and maybe you’ll understand why everyone (that has actually tried it) knows it’s not a gimmick. Do you even know what the term ‘gimmick’ actually means?

    You should stop sounding dumb in comment sections and do yourself a favor. Watch a movie in VR. It’ll save you the finger typing energy.

  4. Let’s be honest the people who say it’s a gimmick are the ones who have not tried any vr headset. To download interstellar in 1080p and then watch it in the gear vr on the oculus video app. You can watch it in a large cinima or on the surface of the moon. Try it. It’s an experience.

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