Hamster Balls of Death

It's asking for a Just A Load Of Balls gag, innit?

Jim thinks we’ve blogged about the Virtusphere before, but I can’t find record of it anywhere. It’s been talked about for a couple of years, but it actually seems to be getting somewhere with spheres being places in various cities, like Seattle, Moscow, Redmond and nowhere near us. It’s a VR device, basically. The idea is that you walk around, and so move around the game world. It looks awesome in a “That’ll never get in my bedroom” kind of way.

But the main reason why I’m posting it now is that there’s videos. Woo!

Firstly, here’s a bloke having a crack.

Secondly, here’s two Virtuspheres in mortal combat with one another.

Thirdly, this reminds me of that game in the original Gladiators, Atlasphere.

Fourthly, that makes me think of Jet.

Fifthly, I’m having a lie down.

[Story courtesy of Technovelgy, pointed out by Griddleoctopus]


  1. John Walker says:

    “It’s very few contenders who come out of this situation with their points intact.”

  2. The_B says:

    Isn’t Jet now the psychologist on Trisha or something? At least that’s what I read somewhere…

  3. James says:

    A new version of Gladiators is coming out in Australia next week, which is super. I loved that show. I doubt they’ll have Taipan, though…

    Other than that… well, I don’t have much else to add. I was never all that interested in these things, but I imagine they’d be great fun to try out. But that’s if they ever somehow come to be.

    EDIT: And by “come to be” I mean in a widespread commercial sense, to be clear.

  4. Man Raised By Puffins says:

    @ The_B: It seems so, yes. She appears to have aged well too. ¬_¬

    Also, what the hell?

  5. The_B says:

    “I have the power!”


  6. Ging says:

    A new version of Gladiators started in the states in january, it’s got Hulk Hogan as a presenter – still uses half the old games too!

  7. Jim Rossignol says:

    I need a life makeover.

  8. Alex Grose says:


    It looks awsome!

  9. DigitalSignalX says:

    When I normally walk around, which isn’t often, mind you, I generally don’t have to start a huge metal ball rolling beneath my feet. How can they expect this to accurately “train” people in the field when they clearly can barely even walk quickly, let alone try to jog or run.

    I’m sure 20 minutes of this would be interesting to try for the gimmick factor, but after that, I’d be jonesing for a good old keyboard and mouse in front of a fat office chair.

  10. Bidermaier says:

    I want to play a lab rat game with that thing. Irony FTW!!!

  11. wcaypahwat says:

    I think we’re just getting the American show down here (Australia), though I could be mistaken.


  12. James says:

    Nah, it’s our own version. I double checked just now to be sure.

  13. Irish Al says:

    Bastards! I had that idea!

  14. Feet says:

    Good lord. Jet as a “Games Mistress”. I hope the person who thought of that idea is a millionaire now.

  15. Noc says:

    “Jim Rossignol says:
    I need a life makeover.”

    “Alex Grose says:

    I feel like I read this entirely differently from how it was intended.

  16. Dean says:

    I asked our virtual reality guy to get me one of these and he said that you tend to fall down in it.

    He recommended this instead.

    Much more portable too.

  17. elias says:

    Looks cool, but seems like so far it is extremely loud and only works for baby steps.

    Cool stuff, though, I can see these conceps being behind a temporary resurgence of interest in video arcades in 5 years.

  18. MonkeyBizniss says:

    I can see that becoming unusable if you run and build momentum (e.g. faceplant). This looks like a much better way to get that holodeck effect going:

    (Omni-Directional Treadmill)

  19. K says:

    Remember the CAVE? Stick the omni-directional treadmill in it.

  20. Man Raised By Puffins says:

    Good lord. Jet as a “Games Mistress”. I hope the person who thought of that idea is a millionaire now.

    If they are, then the person who thought up this must be a billionaire.

  21. James T says:

    I certainly have been giving to a lot of beggars lately; I seek now the elevation! I shall go to the Virtusphere and meditate for three cycles.

    Mu Mu Mu.

  22. Mike says:

    How do you jump, exactly?

  23. Alan Au says:

    I had the chance to play around with one of these. They’re cool, but and momentum and inertia are huge problems.

  24. Omnibus: March 16th - 22nd | Rock, Paper, Shotgun: Pretentious, moi? says:

    […] create space parliament. PC Gamer UK podcast, starring John. He’s got a face for radio. Virtusphere. What the shit. EA’s Chris Corry doesn’t slag PC. Audience gasps. Peter Molyneux teases […]

  25. JonFitt says:

    Huh, well what do you know. It works.

    Had this idea in 1995-odd. Of course we were talking Doom at the time, and had no possible way of paying for its construction but there you go.

    I shall keep the superior 2nd generation idea to myself.