PSVR 2 one year later — here’s the good and the bad after 12 months

The PlayStation VR 2 on our reviewer, Roland Moore-Colyer
(Image credit: Future)

This week marks exactly one year since the launch of the PSVR 2 on February 22, 2023. 

I’m a day one adopter of Sony’s second-generation virtual reality headset. I forked over $599 of my hard-earned cash to purchase the PS5 accessory as soon as it hit store shelves. And after spending a full 12 months with the PSVR 2, I’ve got pretty mixed feelings overall. 

I’ve certainly experienced some highs like my very first time using the headset and being hugely relieved that my biggest issue with the PSVR 1 had been resolved, but I’ve also found myself using it pretty infrequently over the last few months. However, this could be blamed on the Meta Quest 3 as I can’t tear myself from Quest exclusive Asgard’s Wrath 2

The PSVR 2’s first anniversary is a great chance to take stock of the situation. While the Apple Vision Pro is sucking up all the oxygen in the room right now, there’s still a lot to admire about Sony’s gaming-focused virtual reality device. It’s just a shame it comes with a pretty major caveat that I’m not sure will be resolved anytime soon.

PSVR 2 is still a fantastic VR headset  

PSVR 2 on a table with a Lego Horizon model

(Image credit: Future)

As we said in our PSVR 2 review, “the PSVR 2 is an excellent way to get access to high-end VR without needing to buy a gaming PC. Behind its simple setup lies a very impressive virtual reality system” and that verdict still rings very true to this day. 

The PSVR 2 is a seriously slick piece of tec. Its OLED display delivers an impressive per eye resolution of 2000 x 2040, making in-game visuals look sharp and crisp. I also cannot speak highly enough of its laser-sharp tracking. The four built-in cameras observe my movements without a hitch and the whole system is a massive upgrade from the OG PSVR’s light-based tracking, which I found to be pretty unreliable.

The PlayStation VR 2 on our reviewer, Roland Moore-Colyer

(Image credit: Future)

I’m also a huge fan of the PSVR 2 Sense controllers. These orb-shaped controllers not only look the part, but are extremely comfortable to hold, and feel significantly more sturdy compared to the Quest 3’s flimsy paddles. Sturdiness might not sound like an especially key feature, but trust me when you’re flinging your arms around during an intense session of Beat Saber, you want controllers that won’t slip out of your grip. 

PSVR 2 also has a few extra bells and whistles, including haptic feedback on both the controllers and headset. These are minor additions in the grand scheme but greatly add to the immersion you feel while playing some of the best PSVR 2 games.

The PSVR 2’s major issue 

Synapse screenshot

(Image credit: nDreams)

The PSVR 2 is unquestionably a well-designed VR headset, but I can’t help but find myself wondering one question: Where are the flagship exclusive games? 

Where are the flagship exclusives, and why isn't Sony releasing more first-party software for its own VR platform?

I’ve enjoyed a strong handful of PSVR 2 games over the past year, with my personal highlights including Horizon: Call of the Mountain, The Dark Pictures Switchback VR, Moss (and its sequel, Moss Book II), Synapse and the VR mode in Resident Evil 4. However, look at the list of upcoming PSVR 2 games and you might ask where are the flagship exclusives, or why Sony isn’t releasing more first-party software for its own VR platform. 

There are plenty of PSVR 2 games worth playing but many of them are ports of original PSVR titles or also available on Meta Quest. Of course, a game being multiplatform doesn’t make it a bad game, but first-party exclusives are PlayStation’s lifeblood, and it would be great to see Sony support the PSVR 2 with more games that could be considered system sellers in their own right. 

The Last of Us Part I screenshot

(Image credit: Sony)

I had hoped that we might see VR games set in beloved PlayStation universes like God of War or The Last of Us. Or perhaps the OG PSVR’s best game, Astro Bot: Rescue Mission, might get a sequel. Instead, we got Horizon: Call of the Mountain at launch, and otherwise it’s been largely third-party developers that have picked up the slack and keep new games flowing. But as much as I appreciate these titles, they can’t replicate the quality or importance to the platform of a Sony blockbuster.  

At least the most recent State of Play livestream confirmed two more PSVR 2 games: Metro: Awakening VR and Legendary Tales. However, neither is exclusive to the PS5 headset.   

Is PSVR 2 a priority for Sony? 

As the PSVR 2 enters its second year, there are grumblings from some corners of the internet that Sony has abandoned the headset, and while I think that’s perhaps a little premature, I’m getting the same vibe as I did during the later stage of the PS Vita lifecycle. 

The PSVR 2 remains a compelling device, but it’s one for the dedicated PlayStation enthusiasts only. Sony isn't throwing its full weight behind the headset, and its lineup of games consists of smaller titles and ports. Let’s just say I’m no longer holding my breath that for a PSVR 2 exclusive set in the Last of Us universe. 

If you own a PSVR 2 already, there are a lot of reasons to stick with the platform, but newcomers might want to wait for a price drop unless you are already content with the current library. I don’t foresee the PSVR 2 becoming a key part of Sony’s gaming strategy going forward, but it’s not dead yet. And the play experience remains stellar.

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Rory Mellon
Entertainment Editor (UK)

Rory is an Entertainment Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on gaming and streaming. When he’s not reviewing the latest games, searching for hidden gems on Netflix, or writing hot takes on new gaming hardware, TV shows and movies, he can be found attending music festivals and getting far too emotionally invested in his favorite football team. 

  • pyronaut
    In my opinion its biggest issue was that Sony didn't do enough to help smaller studios port their games from PSVR to PSVR2. Many games that weren't ported could have been, but it would have taken some work. Sony could have incentivized that work and they would have had a much bigger library at launch.
    I would have bought it day 1 if I could have played most of my library from PSVR on it.
    Also, if Alyx was ported that would have also been a system seller. Valve could have also done that with some incentive from Sony. Big fail on both these fronts.