Tunnel Vision: The Fortnight In VR

By Alec Meer on July 1st, 2014 at 1:00 pm.

The real name for this column is “Alec tries to justify eventually buying an Oculus Rift Development Kit 2 by convincing himself that all the neat things happening in VR at the moment are absolutely essential to his day-to-day life“. It’s too long for the headline box though, innit?

We’ll get to my DK2 dilemma shortly, but also covered in this inaugural Tunnel Vision are: Optimus Prime, catbus, VR cinemagoing with friends and Unreal 4-powered Italian opera.

I haven’t bought a DK2 yet, partly because aaargh money and partly due to fears that the consumer version will be announced the second I do so, but there is a strong chance I’ll bite the bullet this week. Rumours swirl that we won’t see the consumer version – which will likely have an even higher resolution display and some sort of wireless attributes – until next Christmas, and I’m just not sure I can wait that long. Almost everything I’ve tried on the very low resolution, motion sickness-inducing first-gen Oculus has been impressive, but its huge handicaps have kept from truly gaming on it, and that’s something I yearn to do.

VR is the future, I am quite sure, though I don’t know quite what form it will eventually take. What I do know is that people are already doing amazing things with even the immature first-wave tech. I’m currently in possession of a borrowed Oculus Rift Development Kit 1, and it’s that which will be basis of everything I cover in this column until such time as I get hold of any other hardware.

First, a note. There is every chance you’ll already have seen much of what I cover. That’s OK! This is a round-up, not breaking news. Also, I am entirely aware that most people don’t have access to an Oculus. That’s OK too! The point of this column is not “you have to buy one and try these things immediately”, but instead to try and give the more casual observer a sense of what’s going on out there.

Robots In De Eyes

Let’s start in safe and simple territory. Transformers VR is nothing more than a static statue of Optimus Prime standing in a faintly Autobotish warehouse. You’re free to move around him, and there’s a ramp that’ll take you up to head-height, but that’s it. It’s a decent piece of 3D modelling, and in any other context it’d elicit little more than a shrug. The reason it’s so much more effective on a Rift is scale – stationary this Cybertronian may be, but his massiveness is inescapable and powerful. From a first person, wraparound, 3D perspective, he’s there, and his impossibility as he towers above me is mesmerising. Everything that’s always been wrong with Transformers games is revealed in an instant – we’ve only ever seen these beings as third-person action characters, battling foes of the same size, and never been able to convey that they’re titanic robots made from unfolded vehicles and who are more than capable of squishing us with an errant footstep. More than that, just imagine this scale concept applied to something like Planetside or Titanfall. Once the Rift approaches the mainstream, I’m quite sure it won’t be long until we get to feel minuscule on the ground, ducking between enormous stomping mech feet, completely lost in a wondrous, terrifying future-war.

An animated and transforming Optimus is apparently in the pipeline – can’t wait.

Thanks to Pete D for the tip

The Face of The Future

This is something else, buddy, something else. Created as a companion piece to Italian ‘mini opera’ short film Senza Peso, this Unreal Engine 4-powered vignette is a tour of a fantastical afterlife (as opposed to all those non-fantastical afterlives, eh?) that fuses sumptuous hardware-accelerated landscapes with full-motion video of human beings.

There’s a bit where the gigantic face of a sinister man with stick-on giant eyebrows appears and gazes crossly as you as you pass through, and the 3D effect is wonderful. The environment is lavish enough that I wasn’t thinking “oh, these are two different things stitched together” – this was one world. Games can do environments pretty well now – it’s faces where they still stumble, and which so often play a role in their characters and stories failing to convince.

Which has got me thinking: is this going to be one of the big wins for VR-powered games? Clearly, shooting and editing enough 3D film footage to allow a player to gaze upon a real human face from whatever angle they so choose is a huge practical and technical undertaking, but perhaps there’s scope to at least pop a filmed face onto a rendered body and have Oculus’ stereoscopic tricks turn it 3D rather than a distracting flat surface (hello, Max Payne). Maybe it’s too tall an order – but I hope some mad bastard gives it a shot at least.

Here’s the mini opera which the VR sequence is based upon. I won’t pretend it’s for me; I’m only interested in the pretty, strange, Unreal-powered hellscape that span out of it.

Cinema for Shut-Ins

This isn’t quite videogames, but get stuffed, it’s my website, right? What’s taken me closest to pulling the trigger on an Oculus DK2 is its potential for movie-watching. Being the father of a one-year-old means cinema trips are no longer possible (or, at least, watching a costumed man punch other costumed men against a greenscreen background is not reward enough for the several days’ of domestic bitterness that would result from such an excursion), but I miss them dearly. I was already aware that an Oculus Rift could be used for watching 3D movies, but what I hadn’t yet considered was its application for 2D movies (i.e. anything I’d actually want to watch).

There’s much the cinema can do that even a telly so large that it causes friends and family to anxiously question your priorities in life cannot, and one of those is simple size. To go to the cinema is to watch a screen that exceeds your field of view, that makes actors so large that you feel you’ve sidled right up to them, and to have you moving your head around to follow the action or conversation. Clearly, a projector can recreate much of this, but to do it well requires lots of kit and lots of scale. A £250 face-box can do it better, in any size of house. I was watching a film on a giant screen. I moved my head and my view changed. It was wonderful. (Apart from motion sickness and eye-strain that was still with me the next morning, at any rate. I pray DK2 fixes that, though I also pray that it doesn’t so that I can talk myself out of buying one.)

My basic VR movie-watching was done with VR Player, but one step beyond is RiftMax. As well as the screen, this renders an entire cinema – seats, foyer, pretend popcorn and all. It sounds faintly ludicrous (‘what do I really gain from seeing some pixel-shaded chairs in my peripheral vision?’) until you factor in the multiplayer potential. It’s early days for RiftMax (a Kickstarter campaign is coming) but it is able to stream films online and invite in other ‘players.’ Round up a few fellow socially-ostracised early adopters and you’ve got yourself a happy nerds’ cinema outing without leaving the house. There’s voice chat, there’re multiple screening rooms, there’s avatar customisation and gestures, and the only thing that really troubles me is the crushing inevitability with which this will become Second Life. I don’t really want to stumble into a live-streamed 3D porn movie in a theatre stuffed full with plastic-faced onanists when all I’d wanted to do was watch Dredd with a chum.

And finally

The catbus sequence from My Neighbour Totoro, rendered semi-interactive and explorable. Comparable in effect to the Optimus Prime statue (i.e. Totoro is massive, and in VR becomes faintly terrifying because of it), but as well as including animation and events, this does much with light, shadow and depth too, which builds a powerful atmosphere and a delectable sense of truly being Elsewhere. Walking Simulators are the games most likely to benefit from Rift support in the short term, and this demonstrates how much they can achieve by not shying away from the unusual and playful.

Finally and finally

If you haven’t had a chance to play with a Rift yourself and are UK-based, I’m informed that there’ll be units hooked up to Elite: Dangerous (with Frontier staff in attendance) for you to play with at LaveCon in Kettering on 5/6 July and Fantasticon in Hull on 16 August.

That’s it for now. This column will be fortnightly, partly so I don’t run out of things to cover and partly because I need a few days to recover after any extended use of the first-gen Oculus. Speaking of which, if anyone has had any experience with DK2 and can find a non-NDA-breaking way of assuring me that the motion sickness/eyestrain issues have definitely been dealt with, they’ll be my best friend.

Tips and suggestions for this column are extremely welcome – please send ‘em here.

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54 Comments »

  1. CookPassBabtridge says:

    I kind of felt like opinion on the Rift went “WOW WOW WOW WANT (FACEBOOK) bollocks bollocks sweaty facebook facebox why would you want one grumble grumble nausea”, but nonetheless I took the plunge and got in the queue for a DK2, which is slated for delivery next month as they begin manufacture shortly. I felt the same – I just want the experience, I don’t want to wait and I have got the cash. Also a ton of simulators I want to play with it.

    Its a shame that folks have dropped it like a smelly old sprouting spud that you find at the back of the cupboard, but I am very much interested to see whats coming out for it and what the changes to DK2 do to the games available. A column like this is splendid IMHO.

    • Crainey says:

      I don’t think people have abandoned it. I just think we’ve got over the whole first impressions hype wave and there is competition now, factored in with the long wait.

      I’m very excited for VR and its implications both in the games industry and outside, but it’s something that you really can’t judge through somebody else’s experience and there’s every reason to wait until the consumer version (no software yet, hardware imperfect, etc).

      Just wait unto the months leading up to release when all the press get their hands on preview Rifts and preview copies of VR games/software.

    • Harlander says:

      My enthusiasm was a little soured by the F***book acquisition, yes, but the Rift’s an enticing enough tech that I’m still interested…

      • visionsofamber says:

        The Facebook acquisition let them do two things – a) Sell the rift at cost (aka, not for profit, but at the price it costs to assemble) and b) Hire some of the greatest creative minds in the entire gaming industry. For example, Michael Abrash, who worked with John Carmack to create Quake at id software.

        Or, perhaps you’re looking for Jason Rubin, co-founder of Naughty Dog. I mean, seriously, look at this list of people. If it wasn’t the name Oculus at the top I’d think they’d be building a spaceship.

        http://www.oculusvr.com/company/people/

        Oculus also just acquired Carbon Design, responsible for creating the look and design of many distinctive entities within our world, most specifically the Xbox 360 controller which really hasn’t been iterated on much in the Xbox One.

        These would have been impossible without the acquisition.

        • Martel says:

          I agree. I hate Facebook but a company I really want to succeed and make a product I can afford instantly backed with billions of dollars? Yes please

        • Harlander says:

          That’s all true, I just wish it’d been a company whose main product didn’t fill me with existential despair :p

        • Convolvulus says:

          They could have sold it cheaply and recruited quality personnel by way of partnerships and investments rather than selling everything outright to Facebook. I think there were three central catalysts behind the acquisition: a) Sony spooked them with the Project Morpheus announcement; b) Oculus VR needed quick protection from the vampires at Zenimax who could’ve easily drained the little startup, legal merit notwithstanding; and c) the thing they built, due to simulator sickness, will be far better suited to social media applications than it will ever be as a general gaming device, by which I mean it will be great with certain games and lousy with games in general.

        • taristo says:

          That’s all great and fine, but they already had talent like Carmack at that point and many other people were likely close to jumping places. They could have done it on their own albeit slower.

          Now they have “more money”, which is by the way the go-to “look how good we have it now and at all the opportunities this opens”, for some perspective you can for instance read Carmacks statement from when Zenimax bought id Software (or look up most companies that were acquired by big companies, for instance under Microsoft or EA): http://www.joystiq.com/2009/06/24/bethesda-parent-company-buys-id-software/

          “A large emphasis is being placed on how id will benefit from ZeniMax resources. “Our role will be to provide publisher support through Bethesda Softworks and give id Software the resources it needs to grow and expand,” said Robert Altman, founder and CEO of ZeniMax Media. “Our intention is to make sure id Software will continue to do what they do best – make AAA games.” Todd Hollenshead, CEO of id Software, also agrees that the acquisition will result in better financial security for the team: “We will now have financial and business resources to support the future growth of id Software, a huge advantage which will result in more and even better games for our fans.”

          With Carmack and idTech now owned by ZeniMax, future Bethesda titles are sure to benefit. See John Carmack’s statement after the break. “This puts id Software in a wonderful position going forward,” said John Carmack, who will continue to serve in his current role as Technical Director. “We will now be able to grow and extend all of our franchises under one roof, leveraging our capabilities across multiple teams while enabling forward looking research to be done in the service of all of them. We will be bigger and stronger, as we recruit the best talent to help us build the landmark games of the future. As trite as it may be for me to say that I am extremely pleased and excited about this deal, I am.”

          If you paid attention to the statements around the time of the acquisition and realize the simple fact that they didn’t pay this sort of money expecting no financial return, you should realize where this is heading long-term, especially given Facebooks proclivities to fuck people over regarding privacy (there just recently was another scandal about them manipulating user data in an “experiment”) and with microtransactions and ads: http://www.shareholder.com/visitors/event/build3/stage/stage.cfm?mediaid=63723&mediauserid=0

          “We’re clearly not a hardware company. We’re not gonna try to make a profit off of the devices long term. We view this as a software and services thing, where if we can make it so that this becomes a network where people can be communicating and buying things and virtual goods, and there might be advertising in the world, but we need to figure that out down the line.”

          There will likely be some mandatory drivers and software to be able to use the CV1 and they are already talking about a “platform” (possibly something similar to Steam or Origin) for releasing Exclusive games on that they themselves publish, which will likely also be mandatory.

          But you can just imagine how hot Facebook would be on saving profiles for every person using a Rift regarding what they watch/play/do in VR, what they are looking at and for how long like ads, who they are interacting with, what products they are interested in as well as being able to measure other stuff like engagement. There is almost no upper limit for abuse down the line, especially if CV1/CV2 or further versions come with a camera and microphone.

      • Pich says:

        i have little problems with the OR acquisition by Facebook, because the other options would have been equal or worse, and because FB seems to be lassez-faire with his acquisitions (see instagram)

    • phuzz says:

      I’m lined up for a DK2 as well, but just to correct you, they should be getting despatched this month, (July), hooray!
      Apparently they’re sending an email out on July the 1st with the expected delivery date, although I’ve not received such an email yet :(

      It’s interesting how many of my non gaming friends are interested in trying the OR. Pretty much everyone I’ve spoken to* wants a go when it turns up.

      * ie everyone who I could admit that I’d spent $350 on a VR headset to.

      • CookPassBabtridge says:

        As I understood it, the DK2′s are first come first served. Those who got in at the announcement of pre-orders will get them this month. Johnny come latelies like me have a stated (in the email they sent me) delivery date in August. I will happily be wrong if it means getting it earlier, mind!

        • bj says:

          It’s first come first serve but with a little shuffling on a regional basis. They ship them off to distribution centres around the world in batches, so if you’re in the US or Europe you’ll probably be waiting a while, but if you’re somewhere like Australia then there’s probably only Bruce and a couple of his emus ahead of you.

    • Ian Francis says:

      I’m still really looking forward to the commercial release of VR. The Facebook acquisition is a concern but the main thing dampening my immediate personal enthusiasm is the realisation that it’s more likely going to be 2-3 years before there’s a headset I won’t regret buying rather than the 6 months or so it seemed like when people first started talking about the devkit 1. In the meantime I like following columns like this to see what’s going on, but I’ll be cautious about buying anything until the headset has a 1080p screen for each eye and I have the PC to run that smoothly.

    • green frog says:

      Let’s be realistic here, we all know the same tech geeks who are apoplectic over the Facebook deal right now will still be right there in line to buy one the day it comes out, because the sheer draw of the device is simply going to overpower their qualms about Facebook in the end. We’ve been here many times before, people throw their fit and then move on. This will be no different. Do I need to dredge up the infamous screenshot of all the “Modern Warfare 2 Boycott” Steam Group members in-game playing MW2 to illustrate my point?

      I’m not saying whether the way this works is reassuring or troubling, that’s for you to decide. But I wouldn’t worry about the immediate effect of the Facebook deal on the Rift. It’s just a momentary bump in the road. I don’t see it having any real consequences unless/until Facebook actually does something concrete to the Rift that’s worth getting upset about.

  2. OrangyTang says:

    “if anyone has had any experience with DK2 and can find a non-NDA-breaking way of assuring me that the motion sickness/eyestrain issues have definitely been dealt with, they’ll be my best friend.”

    I got to try the DK2 at a developer event (which didn’t require any sort of NDA, fortunately) and the DK2 is miles better than the DK1. I get ill pretty quickly with the DK1 (within seconds sometimes) but with my brief time with DK2 (a couple of minutes) I had no such feelings.

    Are we friends now? Can I get a hug?

    • BobbyDylan says:

      *big bear hugs!*

    • CookPassBabtridge says:

      So, the nausea thing is subject to NDA? Or did I misunderstand Alec?

      • hasuto says:

        I have not heard anyone who has tried stuff for Oculus mention an NDA. So you can safely assume that was a joke.

        So far what I’ve heard the DK2 has almost entirely fixed the nausea issue. One of the guys at the “Gamers with jobs” podcast have thrown up using the DK1 and tested the crystal cove prototype, you can listen to his reactions from CES at http://www.gamerswithjobs.com/node/116766 (it starts at about 25:30).

        • Convolvulus says:

          When the people at Oculus VR refer to the nausea problem, they’re talking solely about the simulation’s head position discord, and if that’s truly fixed they now have a great tool for watching illusory stuff in motion from a stationary perspective. Unfortunately most video games require a point of view moving in space, often very rapidly, and that brand of nausea can never be eliminated by eye tracking, low persistence displays, higher resolution, higher frame rate, 180° field of view, or anything short of magic Star Trek equipment. Your brain makes you purge when it receives starkly conflicting motion stimuli, and there’s no way around that, although some users handle it fairly well or can learn to tolerate it to a degree. (Not a great sales pitch.)

          Games that aren’t “sitting simulators” like Elite: Dangerous will have to be designed or modified specifically for use with VR goggles (Even the relatively slow-moving Doom 3 had to have certain camera effects removed.), and publishers aren’t going to spend a great deal of resources with profit contingent on a niche device’s adoption rate. The only way the Rift can become a successful gaming device is for it first to be adopted for mainstream media that it can handle without a lot of fiddling, which could be the Facebook buyout’s saving grace. With the right content tools and a low entry cost, maybe virtual tourism, virtual conferencing, virtual birdwatching, or whatever [porn, obviously] could become common, and then publishers would have a ready customer base [of porn hounds].

        • CookPassBabtridge says:

          @ Convulvulus – I may have misunderstood your point, but they have addressed the moving through space issue. DK1 was the “head on a stick” model with only rotational capability, but with Crystal Cove and DK2 you can now move your entire upper body around, lean forward, sideways etc and the unit can manage that. The infra red reference points and the camera that points at your head give 6DOF.

          Admittedly you won’t be able to fly around the room and simulate G-force, but in terms of translational ability, DK2 does away with that particular source of nausea. With the added low persistence, reports are generally of a nausea-free experience as long as all head movement is initiated by the user. Cut scenes will be a no-no, because taking away the user’s ability to control where they are looking remains a source of puke-o-tron.

  3. Deano2099 says:

    So I was at Glastonbury festival last weekend. Oculus had a stand and were doing demos. I guess they really have fixed the nausea issue now then…

    • bj says:

      Was that actually an official stand? From what I’ve heard, they were charging people £10 to try it and didn’t know what they were talking about.

  4. Armante says:

    Great idea for a column! I can’t wait for a consumer OR, so all this stuff fills the OR-shaped hole in my life.
    Also, everybody’s heard of Google Cardboard by now, yeah?

    BTW, are there any Auckland, New Zealand RPS readers that happen to own a Rift and wouldn’t mind letting me come round and try it?! Ta muchly :)

  5. 2helix4u says:

    Damnit, I need one of these and a new graphics card and PC fan! This is going to take a while unless the boot that stomps forever on the faces of the british eases up.

    • Blackrook says:

      There’s only one boot?

      From where I sat it felt like a damn army had marched over us!

      Its just a shame that Elite Dangerous is predicted to be out for going to be for this Christmas,
      while the OR consumer release is due to be out the following, otherwise they would of made
      a ton of sales from that.

      Just have to wait and see how the tech pans out and see if it ever becomes realistically affordable to
      the average gamer

  6. draigdrwg says:

    All this stuff is great, and I do occasionally pop over to the Occulus forums WIP/showcase section to see what people are created, there are a lot of cool ideas over there. Which brings me to my biggest fear about the facebook takeover, supposing they make the rift a closed platform? Can only launch apps through their own launcher. Certified apps only.

    No VR mods for existing games, no weird unity experiments, just paid, signed apps only. The Rift as a platform.

    I really hope that doesn’t happen, but Facebook are clearly hoping to get SOMETHING out of this and control of the marketplace and adverts would be a way to do it.

    • aiusepsi says:

      I doubt that they’ll close it like that. I’d say the bigger risk is that games are written directly for the Oculus SDK and that other VR headsets won’t get a chance to compete because they won’t be compatible. Valve’s trying to avert that by providing their own (open source) API, so we’ll see how things shake out. https://github.com/ValveSoftware/steamworks-vr-api

      • draigdrwg says:

        Yes, that too. Just want VR to remain as open as possible so there is room for weird little hobby projects.

        • nil says:

          Considering that the epitome of shitty consumer electronics lockdown, the iPhone, has its own weird little hobby appstore and development community, I think it’s safe to say that any VR peripheral will be able to be used inventively (as long as it’s popular enough.)

  7. Hypocee says:

    Come to the dark side, CastAR is on track for this autumn, more comfortable and less prone to eyestrain…

    • Harlander says:

      I think there’s a place for both approaches (immersive VR vs. AR). AR is more something you could wear all the time, using it in your day-to-day life until you accidentally step into an open manhole cover.

      However, the group behind CastAR being called “Technical Illusions” is not encouraging

      • Hypocee says:

        Yeah, it has a different emphasis but be advised CastAR also has an immersive VR mode via a prism clipon that’s still light, small, glasses-compatible and focused at infinity without big strong lenses.

        In terms of movie watching it has only 8/9s of the pixels of the DK2, with better horizontal/worse vertical res. The big downside is if OR does manage to push the panel tech out and widen that ahaha rift.

        • Harlander says:

          Hopefully if this stuff takes off there’ll be some standardisation, so you can plug your VR-capable game into a Rift, a CastAR, a Cyberdyne Industries VH3200, whatever.

          • Hypocee says:

            Tale as old as time, later movers and consumers want standardisation while the first mover wants proprietary tech. The Immersive Technology Alliance is a small, eclectic industry group trying to collaborate on openness in VR; Oculus principals were involved in its predecessor club but Oculus emphatically pulled out of it a few days before the FB announcement.

    • Hideous says:

      I mean, CastAR is nice, but it’s not even remotely the same thing as VR.

      • Hypocee says:

        I’m posting sometimes despite the distasteful spamminess of it, specifically because I think people are misinformed about that by TI’s marketing emphasis. Are you making that comment in the knowledge that CastAR has a screen-free VR clipon?

  8. aiusepsi says:

    Scale definitely is one of the things that VR does crazily well. I had a chance to play HL2 using the DK1, and the most impressive moment for me was seeing the Citadel for the first time. Really being able to perceive for the first time just how ludicrously ridiculously tall it is was quite something.

  9. Heliocentric says:

    Psy testing the first gen Oculus Rift.

  10. Hideous says:

    I tried the DK2 at GDC this year, and at least in my experience, there was absolutely zero motion sickness – even when zooming through space in Valkyrie.

    And that says a lot, because I can’t even think about putting on the DK1 without getting motion sick at this point. Up until I was 15, there was no long car ride that I didn’t need two hours rest after, just to not feel sick, but the DK2 just works for me.

    • Martel says:

      That is great to hear. I have problems with 3D in general so I’m hoping that by the time the consumer model is out I might be able to participate. Not that I’ve tried one, too expensive to get on a whim and I don’t know anybody with one.

    • taristo says:

      If you would get simulator sickness it would more likely happen in games where you run around fast or similar like in Team Fortress 2 or Half Life 2 or similar, in most cockpit games (like space/racing/flight/mech sims) you always have point of reference travelling around with you that would likely prevent this.

      This is also one of the reasons why a lot of the demos they were showing at shows were “seated experiences”.

      • bj says:

        Only one of the four games they had at E3 was like that. Of the other three, two were first person, and one was disembodied eyeballs floating around.

        The seated experience thing is more about the liability problems which come with replacing someone’s vision with an artificial scene, attaching their head to an expensive computer via a cable, and occupying their hands with a controller.

        It’s not about preventing motion sickness, it’s about preventing people from suing Facebook.

  11. thedosbox says:

    If Riftmax want to more closely reproduce the real-world cinema experience, the first thing they need to do is reduce the amount of leg-room between rows of seats.

  12. particlese says:

    Oh, man, that giant head in Senza Peso creeped me out so hard I couldn’t stop laughing at my own reaction for the rest of the journey. It’s slightly awkward to watch a video of a head staring at the camera, but it’s quite another thing to for that head to really feel like it’s 20m tall, nearby, staring at you, and to know it’s still there when you look away! Highly recommended.

    Thanks for the article — my VR news has been sorely missing that classic RPS flavour. And while I’ve seen the most of the things here, I had no idea RiftMax was more than a virtual late-night show with one of the RoadToVR guys. Back into the “check it out sometime” queue it goes!

  13. CookPassBabtridge says:

    Also whether those plastic faced onanists have the ability to switch on their OnanCam. And take over the screen.

  14. Martel says:

    Has there been any solid information on even a general release quarter or year? I am tempted by the DK2, but I obviously would prefer whatever the consumer model is…..but I’m not sure I want to wait until Christmas 2015 to get it.

    • Clavus says:

      Alec’s rumour has as much validity as the expectation that they’re still on track for an early 2015 release. In short: nobody knows. Buy a DK2 if you’re an enthusiast / developer with money to burn, otherwise just look if you can find a demo locally.

  15. Axess Denyd says:

    The only real concern I have at this point is how they are going to solve the glasses problem. Wit has bad as my vision is, I don’t think that I would be able to use it glasses-less, but they may come up with an idea. Even if I have to have custom lenses made for the thing I’m up for it, as long as they can work with my way-too-complex prescription.

  16. taristo says:

    35 Must Play Experiences for the Oculus DK1 was a rather good summary and list: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ShfCF-F284A

    Some additions here: http://www.reddit.com/r/oculus/comments/28rao0/35_must_play_experiences_on_oculus_dk1/

  17. racccoon says:

    VR is such a waste of time, just like 3d was.
    The devs are using serious time on this VR expression crap, its just not justifiable, I want to see devs doing the job that’s wasted on this VR and put it into game play, not up ‘n down, all around and around we go. Oh, while your there, go get some sickness pills and don’t forget to make an appointment to your new PAL! “the optometrist”, your eyes are now fucked more than staring into a monitor screen. YOU NOW NEED GLASS”S!
    Just get back to normal gaming devs, your following a piped piper down a beaten track, gamings totally lost the plot on shit.
    Get back to real game development, ignore the VR hypers..

    • bj says:

      Okay, I’ll take the bait.

      It’s small developers producing this stuff, or people from large developers doing it in their free time because they can see the potential this has.

      Big developers as a whole aren’t spending serious time on VR yet because, much like you, the powers that be can’t justify it. Their reasoning is rational though – there’s no install base yet. Your reasoning is not.

      Motion sickness is solved for all but the outliers as long as developers set things up correctly. It doesn’t fuck with your eyes as long as you’re over the age of four. The optics focus the screen at a distance, so there’s less long-term impact on your vision than with using a monitor.

      Being skeptical is good, but do your research first. Give it a try and if you still think it’s worthless, fine, continue making posts about how everyone except you is an idiot. I guarantee you’ll change your tune before the end of the decade.

    • A Gentleman and a Taffer says:

      Yeah, have to say you seem to be arguing that devs carry on as they are which really isn’t what gaming needs right now. The new consoles are just a graphics upgrade so again little will change, it’s actually technology that can bring about some of the biggest leaps in game design. Just look at Nintendo, their finest work came from getting to grips with 3D for the first time and showing everyone how it was done on the N64. Small devs are experimenting with VR on games now but when/if the big guns do take the plunge it could be an incredible leap. My fear is the traditional gamer’s cynicism/sneering will kill VR before it gets going just like Wiimote and Kinect. What games actually use the thing on Xbone!?

      Discussion is good though, thanks for making me think about why VR is getting me increasingly excited.

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