Who are the big players?
The leading name is Oculus, which Facebook bought in 2014 for $2 billion. But despite the early buzz, the Oculus Rift ($500; amazon.com) didn't even begin shipping goggles until April. And the unit's signature controllers have been delayed, too. They'll be sold separately and go out this holiday season. The Rift's biggest direct competitor is the HTC Vive ($800; htcvive.com), which comes with controllers. Both units rely on gyroscopes and accelerometers to track movement, and they have similar hardware specs, including 90Hz refresh rates that enable smooth, lifelike graphics. To run either, you'll need a dedicated gaming rig like Dell's Alienware Aurora (from $800; amazon.com).