Posts Tagged ‘virtual reality’

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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Valve Not Releasing VR Hardware, Giving Tech To Oculus

By Nathan Grayson on January 17th, 2014.

The Valve news can’t stop, won’t stop, will never stop. Until tomorrow, at which point Steam Dev Days will conclude and Valve will clamber back under its Cone Of General Silence (Except During Very Specific Circumstances). Today, though, we get one last blast of information – namely, that Valve does, in fact, have its own “holodeck“-level virtual reality tech, but it doesn’t plan on releasing it to the public. Instead, the Newellian empire has decided to collaborate with Oculus Rift in order to further its goals for a VR-powered future in which PC is king.

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Steam In Your Eyes: Big Picture Now For VR Headsets

By Graham Smith on January 14th, 2014.

SteamVR will make loading TF2 marginally easier. Yay!

Years of only seeing the “VR” suffix in fiction has made it feel futuristic and unreal, but now it’s popping up everywhere. Valve have just quietly slipped support for virtual reality into Steam, letting you use their Big Picture interface while wearing a headset. It’s called SteamVR of course, and it’s in beta.
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