What Exactly Is Virtual Reality?

I remember back when I was a kid people said by the time the 2000s were here there would be flying cars and virtual reality. Well, they were right about the virtual reality! But, I don’t see any flying cars anytime soon! Virtual Reality is now becoming more and more mainstream. Not only on PCs like one would expect, but also on consoles and phones as well.

What IS Virtual Reality?

Essentially Virtual Reality can be defined as being fully immersed in a simulated state – it makes you feel like you are in a virtual world instead of the real world. Virtual Reality is a hyper-state that replicates almost all of your sensory experiences such as sight and touch, as well as hearing. Some even say that it can enhance how you smell things, but I wouldn’t exactly go that far… yet. The headset devices used today for Virtual Reality use displays with stereoscopic features which allow you to put on the headset and visually see 3d images, as well as depth to the images you are looking at. The sensors on the headset allow the images to in turn change with your perspective. The great thing about video games has always been that you can transport into other worlds and be someone else for a few hours. Well, with Virtual Reality this can happen even easier and offers better quality.

How Much Does Virtual Reality Cost?

Most of the Virtual Reality gaming equipment and accessories you will see these days will range from $20 on up to $2000! There are also video games that you can purchase that offer Virtual Reality; from shooting and driving games to fiction and fantasy and everything else in between.

What Are The Best Virtual Reality Headsets?

It seems like in 2017 there are a 100 different companies offering Virtual Reality headsets. But not all of them are created equal. In my opinion, and the opinion of others, these are considered the best headsets to choose from. Make sure you read the info on each one because they all offer something different and are compatible with certain software ie; Android, IOS, PS4, Xbox One, etc.

Oculus Rift + Oculus Touch Bundle

You can find different variations of this item. But, this one is the bundle which includes the actual headset, the touch, and a gift card. Is it expensive? Yes. But its also one of the most well-known Virtual Reality headsets. If you don’t want the gift card or the touch, you can also find just the headset or you can find the headset with certain games or other features.

Uses Windows PC – you also need an internet connection!

Rating: 4.0 out of 5 stars. 547 reviews.

PlayStation VR

“Just Plug and Play – Getting into PlayStation VR couldn’t be easier. Just plug the PlayStation VR headset and your PlayStation Camera into your PlayStation 4 system. You’re ready to go. Advanced VR Display – The feeling of ‘being there’ starts with what you see. Seamless visuals keep you connected to the virtual world through an expansive 5.7” OLED 1080p display running at up to 120 frames per second. 3D Audio Technology – 3D Audio with PlayStation VR means that you’ll be able to pinpoint sounds above, below, and all around you.” Obviously as the name states, this is specifically for PS4.

Uses: Playstation 4

Rating: 4.5 out of 5. 560 reviews.

As of right now, there are only about 25 Virtual Reality games for the Playstation VR. But, more are coming such as Fallout 4 so be on the lookout for those!

HTC VIVE – Virtual Reality System

This is also used specifically for PC and you will need certain system requirements in order to use this Virtual Reality headset. Vive is built from the ground up for room-scale VR, which allows you to physically move around objects in the virtual space. Enjoy hundred of games for SteamVR, plus everything you love about Steam in VR. An adjustable headset and multiple eye relief adjustments, including lens distance and IPD, make Vive comfortable and clear. Wireless controllers designed just for VR make for natural and intuitive interactions.

Uses: Windows

Rating: 4.4 out of 5 stars. 720 reviews.

VICTONY 3D VR headset

This might be an unknown virtual reality company, and they might only have 57 reviews but let me tell ya, this is a highly rated headset. Oh, and by the way, its UNDER $25 and on sale right now – regularly under $60. Whew. Way cheaper than those other guys!

Uses: Android and IOS

Rating: 4.8 out of 5 stars. 57 reviews.

NSInew 3D Virtual Reality Headset

There ARE people out there right now that are saying that this is the BEST virtual headset right now on the market. In fact, if you quickly look at the reviews, people are very happy with this item. Its on sale right now for under $30 regularly under $70. So its definitely cost efficient. It also works with phones that are from 4.7″ to 5.9″. The company is incredibly supportive as well so if you have questions, ask away and they will gladly answer you.

Uses: Android and IOS

Rating: 4.2 out of 5 stars. 103 reviews.

Samsung Gear VR W/Controller – Latest Edition

This one has considerably fewer reviews than the older version, but obviously, that’s because this is the latest virtual reality headset from Samsung. Samsung Gear VR transforms virtual reality with a new handheld controller that seamlessly responds to organic, human movements in virtual experiences. Every move, from turning and grabbing to pointing and lifting, is naturally connected from physical to virtual, making it more intuitive and spellbinding than ever before. Flying through the Alps, watching a film with a far-off friend, experiencing a festival across the globe, and employing the superpowers of your game’s character—your world just got infinitely bigger.

Uses: Galaxy S8+, Galaxy S8, Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, Galaxy S6 edge+, Galaxy Note5

Rating: 4.1 out of 5 stars. 85 reviews.

Xbox One

As of right now, there is NO virtual reality headset or games for Xbox One. I know I know. PS4 rules Xbox One drools. I honestly don’t get it! But in March Microsoft was quoted in saying they are confirming a headset coming in 2018. The rumor mill for this has been going for awhile now, but since Microsoft actually confirmed it, I am looking forward to seeing what they come up with!