They want to do it, and they want to do it right.
Microsoft has sort of been beaten to the VR gaming punch with Oculus Rift and Sony’s Project Morpheus; both of these are concrete projects with games in development for them, but Microsoft’s own VR plans remain nebulous at best.However, that’s not for lack of trying- Microsoft believes that VR will be one of the next big tings in gaming, and they are working their best trying to crack the puzzle.
“We’ve looked at [virtual reality] and we continue to look at that and we’ll see what happens,” Microsoft’s ‘Major Nelson’ said to Syracuse in an interview. “That’s a hard problem to solve. You’re using technology to trick the human brain to do things it’s not supposed to do. That’s why people get headaches. We have to find the right way to do it.”
In a lot of ways, this does sound like Nintendo’s stance on 3D gaming following the failure of the Virtual Boy (which, ironically enough, could be seen as a proto VR headset), and all the way up to and following, the launch of the 3DS, their autostereoscopic 3D graphics enabled handheld. It sounds like Microsoft wants to have its cake and eat it too with VR- they want to bring it to the masses, but without any of the health risks associated with the platform.
It’s certainly admirable that they don’t want to launch their product half baked- that didn’t do the Kinect any favors, for example- but they can’t take too much time, or they’ll have an insurmountable lead to overcome. It’s a tough situation to be in, that’s for sure.