“[We are] never going to close our eyes to where things are going,” says the head of Xbox.
While Sony and PlayStation have invested in VR quite heavily toward the tail end of this generation – with the assumption being that they will continue to do so going forward as well – Microsoft have focused their energies elsewhere. Much of their next-gen talk has been focused on the viability of their multiple subscription services, and the raw power of their new hardware, and recent words by Xbox boss Phil Spencer suggested that VR wasn’t something Microsoft deemed worthy of investing in– even as Sony doubled down on their own position.
However, if you’re thinking Microsoft aren’t still paying attention to virtual reality, you’d be mistaken. Speaking on the Gamertag Radio podcast, Spencer spoke about VR once more, first clarifying what is earlier statements regarding had meant, explaining that though Xbox wasn’t focused on VR, it wasn’t something that Spencer was ignorant of either.
“There are a lot of people I know that are working on some good VR titles, great VR titles, and I’m not trying to not be supportive of that,” he said. “My main point was, I wanted to be clear with our customers on where our focus was. So that if somebody was waiting for us to bring out a VR headset for Series X, at the launch or something – we’re not going to do that.”
Spencer went on to explain that he’s hopeful VR will continue to grow and improve, and ultimately grow to a level where it will make Microsoft consider VR support for their games as a “no-brainer.”
“[We are] never going to close our eyes to where things are going,” Spencer said. “I don’t hope it goes away – I hope it gets bigger. I hope it’s something that’s so important that it would be a no-brainer for us to go and support it.
Of the two next-gen consoles, the PS5 will feature support for virtual reality- though don’t expect a PS VR 2 to launch right alongside it.