Oculus has announced a new all-in-one VR headset called the Oculus Quest, which doesn’t even require a PC to plug into. The Oculus Quest release date is Spring 2019 and will cost $399 in the U.S., which is cheaper than the $499 Oculus Rift bundle with two controllers and several games. The Oculus Quest will also include two Touch controllers, and don’t forget that the Oculus Rift also needs a PC, and external sensors too.
In a press conference introducing the system, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg called the Oculus Quest the “completion of the first generation of Oculus products.” He also stated that it combines “the key attributes of the ideal VR system,” meaning wireless design, virtual hand controllers, and full positional tracking. “If we can bring these three qualities together in one product,” he added, “we think that will be the foundation of a new generation of VR.”
The all-in-one system will have over 50 games ready for launch, although this does suggest that Oculus Rift games may not be directly compatible with the Oculus Quest. It’s also unknown whether you will have to buy these games again, if you’ve already bought them to play on the Rift. Games coming to the Quest in Spring 2019 include Robo Recall, The Climb, and Moss, which we thought was one of the best VR games around.
They also announced that a Star Wars VR series would debut on the Oculus Quest in 2019, titled Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series. Players take on the role of a Rebel pilot, whose ship gets captured and taken to Darth Vader’s castle on the planet Mustafar, last seen in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. The writer and executive producer of the series is David S. Goyer, who was scriptwriter on movies such as Batman Begins and Man of Steel and the co-creator of the Superman prequel TV series Krypton. He was also the producer on the Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire interactive series, which apparently leads into Vader Immortal.
The Oculus Quest was previously known as Project Santa Cruz, an all-in-one VR headset which Facebook had been demoing for the past two years. The Quest uses two Oculus Touch controllers, and has four wide-angle cameras for positional tracking that can allow people to explore virtual spaces up to around 400 square feet. Facebook calls this new system “Oculus Insight.”
The $399 headset includes 64 GB of storage space, as remember there’s no PC to store your games. It includes the same optics as the most recent Oculus headset, the Oculus Go, with a display resolution of 1600 by 1440 per eye and the ability to adjust lens spacing, “to help maximize visual comfort” according to Facebook. It also includes built-in speakers, apparently with an improved bass system.
While the Oculus Quest certainly looks to be a highly affordable all-in-one VR system, without the complications of Oculus Rift, HTC Vive or even PS VR, questions do remain. The fine print at the bottom of the press release states that “Oculus Quest has not been authorized as required by the rules of the Federal Communications Commission. Oculus Quest is not, and may not be, offered for sale or lease, or sold or leased, until authorization is obtained.” In other words, Facebook has announced the system, and its price and release date, before the company has received authorization to actually sell it.
If all goes to plan though, the Oculus Quest will release in Spring 2019. You can check out the announcement trailer below.