Virtual Reality For Gaming is Going to be a Fad – Michael Pachter

Wedbush Securities analyst believes Oculus Rift and PS4 VR Headset won’t have much application in gaming.

Posted By | On 24th, Apr. 2014 Under News

Project Morpheus

Managing Director of Equity Research at Wedbush Securities Michael Pachter is a man of many opinions, many based in analytic reasoning but controversial for some all the same. Pachter is most recently famous for saying that PlayStation Now was a joke. What are his thoughts on other current fads in gaming such as virtual reality, especially with technologies like Oculus Rift and PS4 VR Headset hogging headlines these days?

GamingBolt spoke to Pachter about the potential of VR gaming going forward and whether it would be a mainstay in the industry or fad away like 3D gaming.

“Yes, I think it’s going to be a fad. I think that no one solved the vesticular motion problem which is where you get disoriented because your eyes are seeing something that the rest of your body isn’t experiencing. I think it’s an interesting concept, don’t get me wrong, and I think Facebook is right, there is potential for it beyond gaming…

“I mean, gaming is a fun reason to buy something, especially a device like Oculus Rift, but the truth is that maybe virtual surgery, or something like Ender’s Game or actually doing anything that way, there’s huge potential beyond gaming, but nothing as far as gaming goes.”

Would this be similar to the Kinect which has a multitude of applications beyond gaming? “Right, and just like there aren’t very many compelling Kinect games, other than maybe sports or dancing, that anyone actually says amount to much, similarly I think there will be a few virtual reality games that will be compelling and great, but a hundred?

“I doubt it. It’s hard to develop for, people aren’t going to develop for it unless there’s a large install base, and it’s too much of a niche for a large install base to ever show up without software. So I’d say fad is the right term.

Now Facebook might turn it into something that every household has one of, because, you know, maybe you can shop in a virtual grocery store, so Amazon might use VR so you can subscribe to Amazon Fresh, and shop for your groceries by walking up and down the aisles and picking them out, I mean that kind of stuff makes sense to me.

“But, but I think that’s a much more practical application. And would I buy a VR headset for $10 so I could do something like that? Yes, I probably would. But would I pay $500 to do it? No, and I doubt many will. So, I don’t know what the applications are, but I think it’s a fad.”

It’ll certainly be interesting considering that Oculus Rift has been purchased by Facebook and Sony is making a serious push for VR on consoles with Morpheus. Do you agree with Pachter’s analysis? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

This is just a snippet of our interview with Michael Pachter and we will have more soon.

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  • Spencer

    Michael Pachter is literally one baby step above a forum troll in terms of having a valid opinion. He’s a business man, not a gamer, and has no idea the fervor behind the push for VR in gaming. If he were actually ever correct about anything I might give him a listen, but at present, he is literally just some guy that doesn’t really understand games or gamers giving what he thinks will happen from a business point of view.

    Stay classy, gamers.

  • Diago

    Cool story Pachter… now get back to your desk, you ignorant old number cruncher ..

  • You are flat out wrong

    Pachter? It’ll be a massive success then.

  • sony is nearly dead

    Yep, it’ll be a Fad.
    There will be a few games that are cool for sure. But he’s right, not enough people will buy one. You’ll get a big upsurge when it’s released because there’s a bunch of tech-fanboys that will buy it no matter how bad it is. I feel it’ll sell a couple of million easy…then after that… I expect the pace of sales to drop off real quick… just like 3D TV’s.
    Remember 3D? Remember how sony tried to force that one down our throats? 3D has completely fallen away, it’s a Fad also. Who even bothers to play their games in 3D?! It’s just a… FAD.
    VR is just a little bit too awkward because of the head gear and visually it can be disorientating now and again, so the mainstream will not pick it up (and yes I have access to an Oculus Rift, it’s cool for sure, but I can’t see this as the primary way I would like to play games)

    • ShowanW

      you are kinda right. I have a 3D tv (LG 47lw6500) and only use 3D when watching the Avengers or Man of Steel (man those are pretty in 3D).

      They will definitely sell initially. But price will determine if sales stay steady after the early adopters, have come and gone. $150tops should be the price of one of these things.

  • steampvnc1880

    Mike has been proven wrong more than three quarters of the time. I’d say you should stop quoting the incompetent stooge, but then where else would you get inflammatory stories such as this?

  • Dave Arendash

    Just as 3D is not for everything, VR is not for everything, especially since it can be nauseating. There will be a few games, perhaps even a genre or two that will be big hits, I would bet. But not all games. And I don’t think it will be a fad that just goes away, really, as long as there is compelling content to experience.


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