The 3 best VR systems to buy on Black Friday

Black Friday is going to be the best time of year to buy a new VR system, and these three options stand out from the crowd.

A video game console is one of the most popular Christmas gifts for kids, but VR systems are quickly gaining popularity. Advances in technology have lowered the price of VR space-wide enough that average people can immerse themselves in virtual reality for just a few hundred dollars. If you’re planning to surprise a loved one with a whole new world this Christmas, here are the top three VR headsets to pick up this Black Friday.

Quest 2 VR does not require a powerful gaming computer

For the gamer interested in VR but can’t afford a massive gaming computer, the Quest 2 is a godsend. The all-in-one system does not require a computer to function. While not as technologically advanced as some of its competitors, the Quest 2 still offers an 89-degree field of view with a resolution of 1,832 x 1,920 for each eye. The result is a no-fuss VR set that costs under $400 new.

The Meta Store is the only place where you can buy a Quest 2 directly from the manufacturer. The $400 model comes with the Quest 2 headset, two controllers, necessary cables, and 128 gigabytes of onboard storage. It also comes with a free copy of Beat Saber, one of the most popular VR games. Just keep in mind that some PC-only titles aren’t available on the Quest, although it does have its own exclusives to compensate.

Valve Index is a premium VR set for Black Friday

Valve was the first company to release a full-room VR system to the public with the Vive, and the Index has replaced it as the gold standard for virtual reality headsets. The main downside is that it requires a powerful gaming computer to run, but the result is the absolute best graphics, controls, and game library of any consumer VR system.

The Valve Index is currently available on the Steam Store for a total price of $999. This bundle includes the Index headset, two Knuckles controllers, and a pair of tracking beacons. Alternatively, if you don’t plan to mount it on a wall, two collapsible stands will work. Valve’s own Steam store will be the only place to buy an Index VR system on Black Friday.

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Labo turns a Nintendo Switch into an affordable VR headset

When it comes to VR, most kids don’t care about high-resolution lenses or expanded fields of view. They value immersing themselves in exciting and immersive experiences that are completely different from the standard gaming plan. The Nintendo Labo does exactly that, piggybacking on an already successful console, and it’s also the absolute cheapest way to get into VR for families who already own a Switch.

The Nintendo Labo system can cost as little as $100 to turn the Switch into a VR headset. The full package with all accessories can range in the mid-$200 range, which is less than 10% of the price of an Index with a proper gaming computer. Labo VR kits are available from several retailers including Target, Walmart and GameStop. If they sell Nintendo Switches, they will likely have Labo kits for sale.