Frontier Development’s Elite: Dangerous has been a poster-child for VR ever since the very first Oculus Rift devkits began to ship. The developer has used Rift devkits to showcase the game for many years at numerous gaming expos, so it’s come as somewhat of a surprise to learn that Elite does not support the consumer version of the Rift.
We can thank Eurogamer for this info, as they were tipped-off to the lack of mention of the Rift on the Elite: Dangerous website. They explored the matter a little further with the developer, and came back with an official statement.
“We’ve supported VR for a few years now, and Elite Dangerous is arguably the world’s leading VR-ready game. We want to give players the best possible VR experience however they play – it’s something we talked about with Digital Foundry recently – and that means focusing our efforts. Right now, we’ve chosen to focus on SteamVR. We haven’t cut an exclusivity deal with any VR manufacturer, and we’re still working with Oculus on Rift support.”
Obviously it doesn’t mean that Oculus Rift support will never come to Elite again. The game still runs with early devkits, but insofar as the consumer version goes, there’ll be no VR ship pew-pewing for now. Well, unless you opt to pick up Valve’s HTC Vive that is.
It’s a really bizarre move considering the years of devkit support, but there you have it. We’d be very surprised if Frontier doesn’t implement Rift support in the future, as that’d cut out a very large portion of the budding VR community.