I remember when a mobile phone could only make phone calls and barely fitted in the pocket of my baggy 90s jeans, and they were big pockets. 

Now, an entire three-dimensional gaming system fits into a reasonably comfortable headset, with anywhere between 128GB and 256GB of storage and a host of features to immerse you in a unique world of fighting, movie watching, exercising and social media thanks to the Meta Quest 2 (previously known as an Oculus Rift).  

The actual system

The enclosed headset and two battery-powered controllers are all you need to get started. 

The headset is just over half a kilo in weight and is easy to adjust thanks to its over-and-around-the-head strap, and the ability to change the lens distance by 58mm, 63mm and 68mm in order to get the best focus for your eyes. 

The controllers themselves fit nicely in your hands and do their best to mimic the sensations of opening and closing your fists through the simple squeeze of a trigger. 

They are comfortable and light enough to not be distracting, but with enough stability that you don’t feel like they are going to break when you are holding them too tightly during a lightsaber battle or a boxing class. 

This is an entirely standalone device, which means you don’t need a PC. The headset comes with everything built in, including in-strap audio. The only extras you need are wifi and the Meta app (which requires a Meta account), which downloads onto your smartphone.

The headset charges via USB-C and the hand controllers, annoyingly, by AA battery. Being able to charge the whole kit via AC would be more convenient. 

Setting it up

If you have wanted to get into the world of virtual reality (VR) but are worried that it would be overly complicated to learn, the Meta Quest 2 is an excellent kit in this regard. 

Everything is incredibly self-explanatory and the learning curve to get the basics of VR is very gentle (my non-gaming wife was throwing digital cubes across the room within minutes). 

You do need a decent space to play if you wish to make the most of it. One of the first things required on setup is to draw a line around your play space. This provides digital walls to stop you from walking into things when you have your headset on – a great feature, but if your room isn’t big enough, these red digital walls pop up almost constantly when you're trying to play. 

It’s hard to feel like much of a jedi when you are constantly being warned about your coffee table. 

Setting up a dedicated space in your house is the best call to get the most out of your VR experience, and thankfully, because the kit is so mobile, you have options.

Look, feel & experience

I was most interested in gaming on this device, so my focus was on the gaming experience. However, the Meta Quest 2 isn’t limited to gaming. Other features include watching films, interacting with three-dimensional YouTube videos, browsing the internet and following workout regimes. 

The time I spent in the gaming world of the headset was a fairly positive experience. The refresh rate is impressive, meaning you don’t spend any time watching the world render as you quickly spin around. 

Whether I was fighting droids in Star Wars, "running" from poltergeists in Paranormal Activity or shooting guns in the free VR training application, the controls were, for the most part, responsive and I felt genuinely immersed in the world. 

Graphically, although the device has the ability to display at 1832 x 1920 pixels per eye, the games don’t visually feel at the same level as current generation consoles. 

This is due to a number of factors more to do with the rendering of each individual game, so the quality varies from game to game, application to application, ultimately leading to a varied visual experience. 

Playing games physically is unique and exciting, though not without its downsides. Running around a haunted house or shooting machine guns can be a pretty mind-blowing experience, but nothing snaps you out of this like having to frequently unfog the lenses. 

There are ways to combat this by applying things like dishwashing liquid to them, which is probably not recommended by the manufacturer. I can’t imagine how frustrating this would be if you were using the headset to do a workout.

The other major issue I personally had was motion sickness. Any game that required me to move my character with the thumbstick, rather than with a marker that teleports you to the spot ahead, made me feel incredibly sick within about 20 minutes. This motion sickness lasted several hours after the experience. 

This is a common issue for a lot of players, one that I understand is eventually alleviated with frequent use as, like all things, the brain adapts. However, for me, I almost felt unable to continue playing because of how sick I was made to feel. 


It’s fair to say that VR is still comparatively in its early stages as far as gaming devices go. There is still only a limited amount of content available, and this varies greatly in terms of playability and visual quality.

I do question the longevity of VR as a gaming device. The first hour was mind blowing because it was such a new experience, but as I became more and more familiar with the concept and got used to the technology, the “wow” factor wore off slightly and I couldn’t help but finding myself missing the part of gaming that I enjoyed the most – sitting down, relaxing and having a beer. 

Overall, the Meta Quest 2 is an amazingly affordable and user-friendly VR kit and is making it much more accessible for people to get their hands on this technology. 

This is the leading VR headset on the market and with good reason – it has some really cool licensed games, is very comfortable to wear, graphically decent and has really intuitive and natural controls. 

If you are interested in having a crack at VR then this is definitely the kit worth investing in. 

However, if like me you struggle with motion sickness and constant fogging of the lenses, it's not quite going to be the seamless immersive experience you might be hoping for. 

All images were supplied.