If you’re interested in being at the forefront of consumer VR gaming technology, then you’re in luck because you can now buy (or if you want to be technical about it, pre-order) your own Oculus Rift headset. For just over $600, you too can own what may be the first step into the future of gaming. The Oculus Rift bundles include the headset, sensor, Oculus Remote, cables, Xbox One Controller, and two free games, EVE: Valkyrie and Lucky’s Tale. According to the Oculus Rift store, you can expect for your piece of the future to ship on May 28th, 2016, although there is a limit of one purchase per customer.
However, the price tag of $600 is rather steep, especially if you throw in the fact that you need to have a decent Windows PC to use the Oculus Rift to begin with. Admittedly, such an expense is to be expected, seeing as how the Oculus Rift is the first commercial (modern) VR gaming headset, but there is no question that such a cost will be a turn-off to some.
For example, let’s say that you want to buy the bare minimum needed to run the Oculus Rift and let’s pretend that some items in the Oculus Rift bundles are actually being packaged in at full retail price. Subtract the cost of EVE: Valkyrie and Lucky’s Tale (at full retail price, $60 each), and the Xbox One controller ($60 on the Microsoft Store), and the price of each Oculus Rift unit would come in at $420. By comparison, an Xbox One bundle can cost anywhere between $350 and $500, and that’s including the controllers and free games.
Sure, Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality gaming will evolve over time and thus become cheaper and more commonplace, but as of now, only time will tell if the Oculus Rift will be the vanguard in a new wave of gaming accessories, or a niche product that is simply too expensive to be profitable. On the bright side, at least there will be no lack of games to play on the Oculus Rift, as the Oculus Rift website has claimed that over 100 games will be available by the end of the year (this number includes games like Minecraft), with at least 20 games that are exclusive to the Oculus Rift.