Posts Tagged ‘virtual reality’

Stage Presence: A More Realistic, Virtual Reality Rock Band

By Graham Smith on June 27th, 2014.

The email I received about Stage Presence, an Oculus Rift game where you must keep an angry festival crowd happy with nothing but your microphone, contained a single sentence that convinced me to post it. “I promise not to rename it ‘Bez Simulator 2014′.” Think how fast I’d have posted it if developer Jon Dadley had promised that he would rename it that.

Wonder what it’s like to stand on stage and dodge bottles being thrown at you by a mob? Watch the trailer below.

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Loading Human Reboots To Kickstarter With New Story

By Alice O'Connor on May 7th, 2014.

Now loading: some damn lowergarments.

Loading Human‘s plot just seemed a bit weird and tacky. It was about digging into the memories of a chap with Alzheimer’s disease–a delicate subject–but had you drag your dead wife’s scantily-clad twitchy ragdoll corpse around at one point. A bit weird and tacky. It wasn’t what caught our Adam’s eye when he slipped on VR goggles and took up a motion controller to play the adventure game either. No, he was far more taken with the wonders of reaching into virtual reality.

So blow that plot! It’s gone now. So long! It’s all change at Loading Human, as it’s now toting a new plot about love and rockets, and has switched from Unity to Unreal Engine 4. And it’s kicked off a crowdfunding campaign to help fund development.

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Virtual Duality: Oculus Declares All Of Zenimax’s Claims False

By Nathan Grayson on May 5th, 2014.

Batten down the hatches and/or anything else you frequently batten down in times of crisis; we’ve got yet another titanic clash of gaming companies on our hands. Last week Bethesda/id Software parent company Zenimax claimed that virtual reality giant Oculus Rift owes it some sort of licensing deal because of the VR tech and code John Carmack developed while working for both companies. At the time, Oculus issued a curt statement essentially saying it disagreed. Now, however, it’s decided to put together a fighting word sundae of individual claims, with a few fighting words sprinkled on top.

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EVE Valkyrie Goes UE4, Picks Up Battlestar’s Starbuck

By Nathan Grayson on May 2nd, 2014.

I’ve played EVE Valkyrie at so many events that, last time I climbed into its virtual cockpit (GDC), I immediately decided I’d try and break it. Mostly, this entailed me standing up and seeing if my “head” would pass right through the cockpit’s glass, and – much to my surprise and elation – it did. Sadly, I did not immediately die of explosive decompression. Oh well. But I guess what I’m saying is, we really haven’t seen much of this game’s, er, game yet. Just the same tiny war, waged eternally, its cadre of wind-up toy soldiers none-the-wiser. There will be more to it, though. That’s why CCP is bringing on Battlestar Galactica‘s Katee Sackhoff – aka, Starbuck – to voice Valkyrie’s lead pilot in missions. And it’ll all happen in Unreal Engine 4, because the gaming industry has forgotten other engines exist.

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Deus Next: Technolust Is Cyberpunk VR

By Nathan Grayson on April 15th, 2014.

“Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou, Romeo,” lamented Juliet’s disembodied cyber-spine from her mechanized gelatinous vat while wistfully tearing the arms from a cleaning droid the way one might pick petals from a flower. That is what the name Technolust makes me think of. The game is not at all about that, but it is about as cyberpunk as cyberpunk gets. It’s got monolithic, neon-glistening structures, drone-eclipsed skies, and copious references to the likes of Blade Runner and Neuromancer. The twist? It’s a made-for-VR experience, and it looks mighty attractive despite its somewhat generic leanings.

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Valve’s VR Expert Moves To Oculus, Embraces Facebook

By Nathan Grayson on March 28th, 2014.

You may or may not be super jazzed about Oculus VR’s decision to sell to Facebook for a monetary total so big it’s nearly fictional, but a number of virtual reality luminaries sure are. Count former Valve VR mastermind Michael Abrash among them, as he’s taken the Facebook deal as a sign that it’s time for him to hang up his crowbar and practice a new kind of science: chief science, at Oculus, of course. But why now of all times – especially when Valve is loved by all many some for its free-thinking, open mentality and Facebook is, well, not? Details below.

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

By Alice O'Connor on March 27th, 2014.

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.

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Interview: Oculus’ Luckey Promises Big Pre-Facebook

By Nathan Grayson on March 26th, 2014.

Now here’s a weird thing: when the news broke that Facebook had suddenly made Oculus VR’s reality much, much greener, you want to know what I was doing? Transcribing a last-day-of-GDC interview with… Oculus Rift’s resident wonderchild, Palmer Luckey. In retrospect, he almost certainly knew his company would be under Facebook’s globe-spanning blue umbrella come Tuesday, but that obviously never came up. Instead, Luckey spoke enthusiastically about Oculus’ future in gaming, his company’s research into interfaces that can simulate arms and legs in VR, all the while batting away assertions that Sony’s PlayStation VR mega-mask Morpheus is any sort of threat. So here you have it: one of the final Oculus interviews ever pre-Facebook. Let’s see how it all holds up. 

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Tears Or Triumphs: SuperBike TT For The Oculus Rift

By Graham Smith on March 26th, 2014.

I like to think the TT is a set of crying eyes.

(It should be noted this story was written moments before the Facebook/Oculus announcement.) We already know the Oculus Rift is the perfect tool for immersing players within cockpits, but I was unsure until I played SuperBike TT whether they might similarly benefit motorbikes. The narrow straddle-rockets can cause problems with positional awareness even without a head-mounted display, but the indie project currently on both Greenlight and Kickstarter suggests threading the racing line in VR could be thrilling.

Just as soon as there’s a Rift headset available which doesn’t blur your vision like a drunkard, anyway. Video below.

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What: Facebook Buys Oculus VR For $2 Billion

By Nathan Grayson on March 25th, 2014.

Update: Palmer Luckey has posted on Reddit about the acquisition, his perspective on Facebook’s goals, and Oculus’ continued relationship with the gaming world. “Very little changes day-to-day at Oculus, although we’ll have substantially more resources to build the right team.” Nothing about those pesky privacy issues, though.

Original story: It’s not quite April 1st yet, so I guess this is happening. Oculus VR, the daringly sexy eyeware fashion company/hobbyist virtual reality outlet has officially been purchased by, um, Facebook, of all things. It sort of makes sense, I suppose, given that VR stands to radically alter the way people communicate from long distances, and that seems to be Facebook’s focus here. Problem is, the social media goliath sent out a press release that’s full of bits like, “mobile is the platform of today, and now we’re also getting ready for the platforms of tomorrow” and hey wasn’t Oculus Rift a PC gaming device at one point? Also John Carmack works for Facebook now, and that’s just weeeeeeeeird.

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The Future Of Marketing: A Tesco For The Oculus Rift

By Graham Smith on March 24th, 2014.

All in our homes, navigating empty shopping malls alone.

Fans of the metaverse might briefly remember that period, 2003-2006, when all the world’s companies leapt upon Second Life as a new digital avenue for brand expansion, synergy, and other ultimately pointless ways to invest their marketing money. Well, good news! Because now the Oculus Rift is available, there’s a whole new way to “communicate your brands message.” Supermarket chain Tesco are getting in first, with a virtual recreation of a supermarket.

I would play this. I will “play” this. A trailer of your consumerist future awaits below.

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A Game And A Chat: The End Of GDC Spectacularmathon

By Nathan Grayson on March 22nd, 2014.

IT. IS. OVER. Done. Slain. Dead. Six feet under. Sleeping with the daises. Pushing up fishes. We gathered one last time for a reflection on this year’s whimsical game dev summer camp, its most important moments, and where the gaming industry is headed as a whole. Part one’s guests include Papers Please creator Lucas Pope, Depression Quest creator Zoe Quinn, and Boon Hill dev Matt Ritter. Part two, meanwhile, brings in such luminaries and champion toe fighters as Gone Home writerly brain man Steve Gaynor, Kotaku features editor Kirk Hamilton, resident Vlambeer madman JW Nijman, Action Henk‘s Kitty Calis, and RPS god heroes Cara Ellison and Hayden Dingman. The end result? A loud, exuberant, exhausted goddamn disaster. Beaming agreements, screaming arguments, and confusing argreements. Also lots of people walking into our room randomly.

Among many other things, we talked everyone’s favorite GDC moments, diversity in the gaming industry, the virtual reality fuuuuuuuture’s growing pains, my Lost Levels talk, and what happens after you release a game like Papers Please or Depression Quest. Settle in with some popcorn and a hideous, burbling soda and tune in below.

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A Game About Nothing: Jerry’s Place Puts Seinfeld In VR

By Graham Smith on March 4th, 2014.

Get. OUT. No, YOU get out.

What is the story with the Jerry’s Place virtual reality project? That’s not the lead-in to a Jerry Seinfeld-style joke, but an opportunity to explain that Greg Miller has re-created Jerry’s apartment from the sitcom Seinfeld for the Oculus Rift. It’s your opportunity to sit at home, alone at your desk, and take part in The Contest. I lose every time.
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