Valve’s new Index headset is a high-end option for VR fans, but is it worth the $999 price tag?

(Valve Software Photo) The Index, Valve Software’s new expensive entry into the virtual reality hardware market, has officially been released. At $999 for the whole package, the Valve Index is easily the highest-priced method of entry for VR on the market (Oculus Rift S is the next most expensive, at $399). It has a number of high-end technical improvements over the competition to justify its price tag. The full Index consists of a headset ($499 by itself), two “Knuckles” rechargeable controllers ($279 for two), and two base stations ($149 each, with a 15-foot power cord, stand, and mounting hardware). The individual components are also backward-compatible with the HTC Vive and Vive Pro systems. Initially announced back in late March, the Index is Valve’s first solo entry into the virtual reality hardware market, following the Bellevue, Wash.-based company’s 2016 collaboration with HTC that created the Vive. The Index is a peripheral Read the full article…

Google’s Phil Harrison isn’t worried about ISP data caps for Stadia

One of the questions surrounding data-hungry streaming services like Project Stadia is how they’ll manage with things like data caps, which some home internet services place strict limits on (similar to cellular data). But in an interview with GameSpot, Phil Harrison, vice president and general manager of Google, doesn’t seem too concerned that it’ll be an issue. “The ISPs have a strong history of staying ahead of consumer trend and if you look at the history of data caps in those small number of markets … the trend over time, when music streaming and download became popular, especially in the early days when it was not necessarily legitimate, data caps moved up,” explained Harrison. “Then with the evolution of TV and film streaming,… Read the full article…

Valve Index review: high-powered VR at a high-end price

Gaming company Valve pioneered VR as we know it today, creating a sophisticated tracking system and prototyping several headsets. It runs the popular SteamVR platform, and it’s partnered with HTC on the Vive system. But it hasn’t actually produced a VR headset. That’s changing with the Valve Index: a high-end, PC-tethered headset that starts shipping today. The Valve Index is specialized and expensive even by VR’s standards. It costs $999, which is more than twice as much as the $399 Oculus Rift or $499 HTC Vive. Like those systems, you’ll need a gaming PC to use it. If you need convenience and portability, it’s not the right choice. You can find headsets with higher resolutions or wider fields of view. But for people who spend a lot of… Read the full article…

EA Access will launch for the PlayStation 4 next month

EA Access will launch on the PlayStation 4 on July 24th, Electronic Arts announced today. The service — which has been available for Xbox One for nearly five years — gives players access to a massive library of Electronic Arts games. The subscription service is $4.99 per month and includes games such as Mass Effect: Andromeda, Dragon Age: Inquisition, Battlefield V, and A Way Out. Subscribers also get access to prelaunch trials and a 10 percent discount on EA digital purchases. EA revealed back in May that the service would finally come to the PS4 sometime in July. Subscribers who own EA Access on Xbox One will still need to pay separately for PS4 access; the service acts as a different account across various consoles. Read the full article…

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Review

Harry Potter: Wizards Unite may not be the wizarding world game of my dreams (hopefully that leaked Harry Potter RPG trailer is more than a concept) but I’m pleasantly surprised with how much I’m enjoying Niantic’s latest augmented reality “walking RPG.” This followup to the phenomenally successful Pokemon GO does a lot of heavy lifting to justify its storyline that makes the actual idea behind it a little wonky, but the many, many layers of exploration and collection it encourages have kept me engaged on a daily basis… so far. Harry Potter: Wizards Unite is, in a nutshell, Pokemon GO but with wizard tchotchkes instead of collectable pocket monsters. The longer version of the description reads a bit more like a J.K. Rowling lore tweet: in the quiet, post-Deathly Hallows epilogue lives of Harry, Ron, and Hermione, a great calamity has hit the wizarding world and threatens to tear down Read the full article…

Enter for a Chance to Win Life is Strange

Welcome to Daily Win, our way of giving back to the IGN community. To thank our awesome audience, we’re giving away a new game each day to one lucky winner. Be sure to check IGN.com every day to enter in each new giveaway. Today we’re giving away a digital Life is Strange Season Pass for Xbox One. To enter into this sweepstake, fill out the form below. You must be at least 18 years old and a legal U.S. resident to enter. Today’s sweepstake will end at 11:59 p.m. PDT. Entries entered after this time will not be considered. Read the full article…