That Was Fast: Use Facebook In VR With Oculus Rift Novelty

By Alice O'Connor on March 27th, 2014 at 8:00 pm.

WE'RE BRINGING BACK THE POKE

“SCROLL FACEBOOK…WITH YOUR FACE” it promises. “YOU’LL NEVER FACEBOOK WITHOUT YOUR FACE AGAIN.”

Lacking mystical powers of prophecy (try as we might to guess the end of tonight’s Eastenders), we can’t yet see exactly what will be the fallout of Facebook buying Oculus and its Rift virtual reality goggles for $2 billion. However, thanks to GNAH! and Skipping Stones developer KO-OP Mode, we can now experience the majesty and wonder of browsing Facebook in VR. The wags behind have whipped together a vision of the future with Face It: It’s Complicated, letting Facebookers into glimmering cyberspace to look at photos of their friends’ children.

Should you have your own VR goggles, or extraordinary powers of going cross-eyed, you can download it for Windows or Mac from the website and wander around cyberspace using the arrow keys.

Here’s a sample of Prosthetic Knowledge‘s adventures inside web 4.0:

Hack the planet!

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56 Comments »

  1. LionsPhil says:

    A 3D virtual world just to look at a 2D plane?

    Hello again, ’90s! Long time no see. (Pass me that cheesily polygonal key, won’t you?)

    • hideinlight says:

      Or you could with the powers of the force, turn a photo into a ball of energy and throw it against a virtual wall, where it’ll magically turn into a painting. And then like Nightcrawler teleport to it and admire it.

    • Premium User Badge Harlander says:

      Yes, they’ve really nailed that timelessly crappy early-90s VRML aesthetic, if the screenshot’s anything to go by.

      Anyone remember VRML? Man, what a load of rubbish that was…

      • psuedonymous says:

        “Anyone remember VRML? Man, what a load of rubbish that was…”
        Was? WAS?! I’ll have you know that VRML is alive and well. And just as crappy as ever!

    • waltC says:

      Well, I’ll take polygons over ultra-cheesy stereoscopy any day…;) Good grief, the latter dates from the 1800′s.

      But, the problem with the “blind diving mask” concept of VR is a simple one to understand. Most people, quite unconsciously, like to know what is going on around them in the real world even as they play a game–regardless of the gaming device. We shunt reality off to the side when doing so, of course, but it is also always in our periphery–both figuratively and literally. We know on a deep and unmistakable level that we’re aware of our surroundings and thus can react to them if need be. It’s a comforting balance between the game and the reality surrounding us. Put on the blind diving mask and we become blind peripherally to our surroundings. At some point the urge to rid one’s self of the mask will become unbearable and will have to be obeyed, thus destroying whatever benefits we gain by putting on the mask. At the least, it will stir claustrophobia even in people who don’t think they have it, and at worst, other people simply will find the sensory deprivation immediately undesirable.

      (Think of sitting in a movie theater normally, versus sitting in the same theater with the diving mask on, and you should be able to conceptualize what I’m talking about.)

      There’s another problem, too, although compared to the above it is relatively minor. While on the surface it may sound cool to turn one’s head in order to see in that direction, because that is what we do in real life, but I think that in reality we really *don’t* want to have to do that sort of thing when playing a game. It can become tedious and more like work very quickly. In today’s modern, polygonal based 3d games, for instance, we don’t turn our heads to get a different view, we turn the game *camera*,” or we turn our character’s head on screen in order to take in our surroundings in-game. We do this not by literally turning our heads but by a flick of a finger on a keyboard or a mouse–which takes far less energy than having to actually continuously turn *our* heads literally in-game would take. The economy of motion is much better when we don’t have to *actually* turn our heads to see 360 degrees around us. I think it is really not so much the difference in effort in terms of the energy required as it is that being forced to actually crane your neck and turn your head to see something in a game would be very distracting–again helping to destroy the enhanced illusion that is the purpose of donning the mask in the first place.

      In short, this is one of those ideas that sounds far better than it actually is.

      • P.Funk says:

        “While on the surface it may sound cool to turn one’s head in order to see in that direction, because that is what we do in real life, but I think that in reality we really *don’t* want to have to do that sort of thing when playing a game.”

        Go talk to TarckIR users.

        Also, try dogfighting someone in the constrained pit of an Me-109 while juggling throttle and blending control surface inputs with your hands and feet all the while needing to watch that speedo and engine temp and whatever else is modeled in this version while trying to keep him from disappearing behind the damnably constructed quiltwork of metal support struts in the canopy that barre your vision of him.

        If I were to give a reason why VR is not the be all end all dandy it’d be that a simmer wants to be able to find his controls AND reach for a beverage during a 4 hour sortie, something that seems terribly uncomfortable in total visual sensory deprivation.

  2. FurryLippedSquid says:

    FACEBOOKFACE?

  3. Premium User Badge quietone says:

    Didn’t see that one coming.

  4. altum videtur says:

    RECURSIVE NIGHTMARES
    THE BEST KIND

  5. staberas says:

    This world changes too fast , FB buys oculus , Carmack working for facebook? whats next ? Dogs and cats living together?

    • Niko says:

      Dogs and cats have been living together for thousands of years, it’s the conservative media that wants you to believe otherwise!

    • Saiko Kila says:

      More like dogs and cats eating your liver together. That’s the endgame. The rest is just a ruse.

      • weary_scientist says:

        Or perhaps: Cats putting up with dogs while training them to remove your liver. Then the cat feasts, while the dog looks guilty in the corner but has no idea what is actually wrong.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      Nah, cats would soooo rule over the dogs. A dog would do anything for food, a cat would never give it up, but could “promise” to give it to the dog later. Ever seen a cat keep such promises? No, no one has lived to tell…

    • Elethio says:

      Mass hysteria, Human sacrifice .. and giant marshmellow bad guys.

  6. mrmalodor says:

    I can’t take this. It’s too much to face.

  7. mechabuddha says:

    I’m imagining a world in which I can don an Oculus Rift, log into Facebook through it, load up this app through Facebook, and then log into Facebook again. Facebook-ception.

  8. Premium User Badge Jiskra says:

    What’s next ? Is Facebook gonna buy Warface off Crytek ?

    • NailBombed says:

      TEKWARBOOKCRYFACE – and yes, this will be you if you try reading any of William Shatner’s TekWar.

      • Premium User Badge bonuswavepilot says:

        The kids have to learn about Tek War sooner or later.

  9. SillyWizard says:

    Hey, so…any chance we could not get updates about the Rift in association with facebook? Seeing facebook “news” pop up here is going to make me sadpants.

    While I’m definitely behind continuing coverage of OR game-news, OR facebook-news should be treated the same as cleverphone-news. That is, not at all.

    Just like phones, the OR is now a piece of bullshit that has a sometimes-use of game stuff. Please adjust accordingly.

    • Niko says:

      Sorry, is this a post from the future?

    • TechnicalBen says:

      Perhaps they is the reason for the buyout? Get media coverage (BBC news and everyone has been), get lots of Google hits. Watch share prices skyrocket over perceived imagined value, rinse repeat. Well, there is at least some value, that in media, advertising and influence… hmmm, influence, that’s worrying.

  10. Monkey says:

    Well thats facebook integration done, now lets turn our focus back to making a great, open, gaming peripheral.

    • BarryK says:

      lol “open”, as if that’ll be happening now. I’m sure Facebook paid 2 billion plus to corner the, yet to be a thing, VR market just to open it up to competition. Oculus VR™ is going to be locked tighter than a ducks ass by the time the consumer version launches.

      • SillyWizard says:

        Mmmm…duck-ass….

      • Premium User Badge Clavus says:

        As for my baseless speculation: I believe FB will invest in a corset revival movement to tighten things even further.

  11. hideinlight says:

    *SCROLL FACEBOOK…WITH YOUR FACE*

  12. Radiant says:

    Just for context.
    The same VC [Andreessen Horowitz] has equity in Facebook, Instagram and Occulous Rift.
    Those dudes have just caked a hell of a lot of money from one ipo.

  13. kael13 says:

    An offering to the new Facebook gods?

    DOES THIS APPEASE YOU!?

  14. Scumbag says:

    If this is still game focused will walking into one of those cacti cause you to loose friends?

  15. Premium User Badge Sinomatic says:

    I have this sudden, strange compulsion to shout “Awooga!”.

  16. wodin says:

    They sure are going to have to sell alot of units for a pretty steep price to recoup $2 Billion and then make a profit..

  17. Jraptor59 says:

    Wow, they made facebook even worse! Now you get motion sickness while looking at peoples stupid posts. What a waste of technology.

  18. manny says:

    With webgl and streaming technology Facebook will become a portal for games. So don’t be surprised if Facebook buys game developers and game exclusives.

    • Jalan says:

      Assassin’s Creed VII brought to you lovingly by Facebook – includes exclusive mission to assassinate your entire friends list! In-app purchases may apply.

      Half-Life 3 – you waited long enough, here’s why…

      Minecraft: Facebook Edition – Dig relentlessly at the social media ecosystem until you uncover the secrets that lie within the core of ZUCKERBERGWORLD

  19. bstard says:

    I wonder, now that I have the pleasure to travel in train with the so called smartphone zombies facebooking, in a few years the mob will wear those headsetmonitorthinngies and facebook 3 smegging D? Seems evolution is correcting itself ;)

  20. derbefrier says:

    Lol looks terrible

  21. Sheogorath says:

    Suddenly, all those joking cartoons and photoshopped images joking about facebooking with your face have come true. Go internet! You predicted the future once again.

  22. vivlo says:

    i’m eagerly anticipating the Real Virtuality now

  23. HisDivineOrder says:

    Hilarious.

    Now how long before Facebook utilizes their ownership of Oculus to squeeze them to end this parody?

  24. Elethio says:

    I know one person with an Oculus rift, they bought to play the Alpha of Elite Dangerous (lucky Whatnot!).

    However he also stopped using Facebook years ago and I don’t see him starting again just for this gimmick.

    Come to that, I don’t find this remotely tempting as a reason to fork out for a rift either.