The PlayStation VR team has lost one of its leading developers. Dave Ranyard has announced that he’s leaving Sony after nearly 17 years to start his own independent career in the virtual reality market.
Gamasutra reports that Ranyard was the head of Sony’s London Studio. This team made high-profile VR games such as The Deep and The London Heist. The studio, which was visited by Hideo Kojima last month, is also working on another, unannounced VR game.
Raynard told Gamasutra that it was a “tough decision” to leave Sony. He went on to say that it’s possible he’ll still work on PlayStation VR with some of his future projects.
“2016 is going to be the year of VR, so it’s the perfect time for me to take this step into independent development,” he explained. “The emergence of a new medium like VR doesn’t come along very often and I really want to be a part of this new world.”
GamesIndustry International reports that Raynard had been with Sony’s London Studio for 17 years. Before shifting to VR development, Raynard worked on Sony’s SingStar and Wonderbook franchises.
PlayStation VR is scheduled to launch sometime in the first half of 2016, though a specific release date has not been announced. Sony has also yet to provide pricing specifics. A recent report suggested the headset, which runs on PlayStation 4, might cost $400-$600.