For a time, Oculus Rift Dev Kit owners enjoyed being able to play Elite: Dangerous through the eyes of a pilot. Then the news came that Frontier were struggling to make Elite play nice with SDK 0.7, and although it can be made to behave on 0.8, it’s not the simplest solution. Now, Frontier has confirmed that Rift support is no longer top priority, in preference of SteamVR.
“We’ve supported VR for a few years now,” Frontier said in a statement to Eurogamer, “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.”
The final sentence contains an important clarification. We’re all a bit twitchy about exclusivity deals impinging on PC space, so it’s a relief to know that nothing has been contractually ruled out. Still, until Rift support catches up, it’s bound to disappoint those with headsets on order—launch title developers are already using SDK 1.0.
Update: On its forums, Frontier has stressed that it is actively working with the Rift—SteamVR is just the focus.