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Another bundled Oculus product: four months of Unity Pro.
Enlarge / Another bundled Oculus product: four months of Unity Pro.

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Oculus today announced that its highly anticipated PC-based Rift virtual reality headset is available for pre-order beginning Wednesday, January 6 at 8 a.m. PST (11 a.m. EST). We still don’t know exactly when the headset will be available or how much it will cost, but Rift pre-orders will include copies of VR-compatible games Eve: Valkyrie and Lucky’s story.

The Rift itself is still officially on track for the same “Q1 2016” release window first announced in May. However, the hand-tracking Oculus Touch controllers first demoed at last year’s E3 were recently pushed back to the second half of 2016; the Rift will initially ship with an Xbox One control pad.

The final price for the consumer unit is an even bigger mystery. Oculus said in October that the consumer edition will cost more than the $350 development kits, but would remain “in that ballpark.” In May, Brendan Iribe, CEO of Oculus, said a Rift and a full-spec PC capable of powering it would cost a total of $1,500.

We can only assume that these important questions will be answered before pre-orders actually start (and an Oculus spokesperson tells us “that would be a safe assumption”). Then again, maybe Oculus expects early adopters to be willing to pay any price to get a product at some vague future point (although that seems highly unlikely). In any case, Oculus is scheduling a Reddit AMA session after preorders begin, Wednesday at 6 p.m. Pacific, so you can bet these questions will be asked there if they’re still to be answered.

Last May, Oculus announced that players would need a PC with at least 8GB of RAM, an Nvidia GTX 970-level graphics card, and an Intel i5-4590 processor to power the Rift. The headset also requires a Windows machine; support for Mac and Linux has been tentatively submitted.

By akfire1

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