Already own an Oculus Rift but thinking of picking up an Oculus Quest? Don’t worry; you probably won’t have to pay for the same app twice.
Oculus today confirmed that games and experiences appearing on both platforms can support cross-buy and cross-play. Cross-buy means if you’ve bought a game on Rift over the past few years that’s coming to Quest when it launches this Spring, your Oculus account will recognize the previous purchase and let you download the Quest version free of charge. Similarly if, after a bit of Quest ownership, you decide to pick up a PC VR headset suchs as the newly-announced Oculus Rift S, your PC Oculus Store account will already have your pre-bought Quest games waiting to be played again.
At a GDC event earlier this week VP of Content Jason Rubin explained that the decision to support cross-buy was ultimately up to developers. That said, Rubin noted Oculus expected most to support the scheme. Games with more sizable differences between Quest and Rift may opt to charge for both, though.
Cross-play, meanwhile, means Rift and Quest owners can play together in the same games. Imagine, say, Dead and Buried 2’s western shootouts, expect one of you is on a Rift and the other is on Quest. The Quest player won’t have the same visual fidelity but the six degree of freedom (6DOF) tracking should put you on a mostly equal playing field. In the past multiplayer VR games have often struggled to build up long-lasting communities for players to find games in. By growing the potential audience with cross-play Oculus could help tackle that problem.