The price of the Oculus Rift was certainly shocking too many which had expected lower pricing, though with the price of the second big virtual reality headset the HTC Vive is seems that virtual reality is too expensive. I had previously gone over the aspects of why just the Oculus Rift was too expensive before which you can read below, yet it seems at this point the whole market of virtual reality will be too expensive. There are some cheap models, though they are only aimed at creating a case around using your phone as a headset and that really doesn't seem all that appealing. I had hoped that virtual reality was going to be a big thing in the next couple of years, but with costs for the first wave of headsets being so high I can't imagine it catching on very quickly. The average consumer that enjoys gaming will most likely not have the extra money sitting around to invest in these sort of experiences which could kill the virtual reality market before it even has time to get a footing.
I'm sure there are many out there with extra money to buy these devices, but the only way these machines can catch on is to come in a price that regular people can afford. The first portion of this is that these are peripheral devices that extend your experience and require a base to function from, so you need both at fairly high specs in order to get the proper viewing of these games. It just seems like an awful lot of money to pay for something not heavily supported in the market at this point and something that could vanish in the future if it doesn't take on right away. The Oculus Rift is being sold for what I thought was high at $599 USD and comes bundled with a couple games. Keep in mind that the cost was originally supposed to be a couple hundred less according to the creator "in this interview with Eurogamer". We now have the second pricing of a vr headset with the HTC Vive coming in at $799 USD which includes two games which I wouldn't consider solid launching titles, but you get controllers and tracking boxes. While we don't have the pricing for the controller sticks of the Oculus Rift is seems like both could be very close in pricing at the end with the Vive being the more complete launch version of vr in terms of coming with the controllers. They're both priced quite high and with the conversion in most countries it ships it gets even worse so I can't see either of these truly catching on as huge sellers. The components may be high end, but for the regular consumer it's not something they're going to be able to fit into their budget. I'm going to assume that any other competitors will match these two at this point so it'll be interesting to see the pricing choice for Playstation VR when that comes or if someone else will enter this market at a lower cost to collect market percentage. I hope these prices come down at some point, but these first iterations are supposed to last a couple years at least so it'll be awhile before many can get their hands on the devices. For now I can just dream about being in the virtual worlds and at some point I hope these devices are more affordable or have a better hook that makes me want to take the dive on getting one.
Read Why Oculus Rift is Too Expensive
Oculus Rift Site & Product Information
HTC Vive Site & Product Information