Posts Tagged ‘Oculus Rift’

Galaxy Golf Now Sinking Spaceputts In Virtual Reality

Cybergoggleeers, please play Galaxy Golf [official site] and allow me to live vicariously through you. It looks like Super Mario Galaxy crazy golf and I’m sorry I can’t find out for myself. Yes, I know I’m the kind of dreadful VR sceptic who calls this latest fad a “fad”. That I’m always saying we’re years away from the future others will tell you is already here. That I insist it’s not even proper VR unless if you die in the game, you die in real life. But I still want to blast balls between dinky planetoids.

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ZeniMax Vs. Oculus: Palmer Luckey Didn’t Develop Rift

I am sorry to bring you an update on ZeniMax’s lawsuit against Oculus, a dispute over how much ZeniMax and then-id Software technowizard John Carmack contributed to the Rift’s development. I’m sorry because courtroom drama is so dry. I’d much rather tell you about how Jessica Fletcher, Phryne Fisher, or equivalent amateur sleuth uncovered evidence, how they charmed their way into a high-society dinner, pumped a suspect for details with grace, then cracked their safe with a bobby pin.

No, instead all I can tell you is ZeniMax lawyers claim that the Rift only became the technological wonder we know today thanks to work by Carmack and other ZeniMax employees, not solely by Oculus founder Palmer Luckey. Heck, they say Luckey “lacked the training, expertise, resources or know-how to create commercially viable VR technology, his computer programming skills were rudimentary, and he relied on ZeniMax’s computer program code and games to demonstrate the prototype Rift.” Oof.

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VR Suits Minecraft Down To The Ground, Controls Aside

Unofficial Minecraft VR has been around for a while, but earlier this month Mojang launched official support for these future-glasses everyone keeps banging about. Minecraft‘s VR bolt-on is a free install from the Oculus store which, for the time being, only works with the Windows 10 Edition. And with a Rift, although a well-established non-official option exists if those are your cybogogs of choice, or if you prefer the Java version of the game. I’ve been looking at the official option, and hey, it’s a good time.
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STALKER IRL: The Haunting Chernobyl VR Project

Back in the days of STALKER and its two sequels, I felt like I was the only games hack who didn’t get sent on a tour of Chernobyl and Pripyat. Those who did visit came back with reports of rain and health worries and mystery meats, then shared photographs of them smiling in front of a decaying Ferris wheel or looking sombre in a Marie Celeste classroom. Perhaps it is best that I never went myself. What a strange thing to be a tourist to. Is any possible response appropriate?

The Chernobyl VR Project, essentially finished but for the time being only available for Oculus Rift, with a more refined version due for both that and Vive a little later, gives me my chance to be a tourist, without the background anxiety about background radiation.
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Wot I Think: Crytek’s VR Game The Climb

Three fallacies I’m occasionally guilty of believing:

1) The Oculus Rift does not involve any of the physicality of the HTC Vive
2) VR gaming is riding a cart to minigame hell
3) There’s a ceiling on how good VR games can look

Crytek’s beautiful and involving Oculus Rift game The Climb [official site] is a pretty good riposte to all of the above.
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What Is The Best VR Headset? Oculus Rift vs HTC Vive

Pity me. I have two different VR headsets in my house, so my PC is a mess of cables, USB hubs and strained video output adaptors. My suffering is unimaginable. I have swaddled myself in wires and made my forehead sweat for your benefit, however: to try and give you some sense of how the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive compare to each other in daily practice. While many of the baseline specs are all but identical, there are a raft of smaller differences between the two, even once the matter of the Vive’s room-scale support is discounted. I do, somewhat reluctantly, now have one headset I recommend over the other at this point in time, but with important caveats.
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Oculus Removes DRM Blocking Rift Games On Vive

In April the cyberworld rejoiced when cybergoggle enthusiasts created a tool to let HTC Vive cybernauts play games made for Oculus Rift. In May, er, Oculus responded by adding a DRM headset check that stopped software working if it wasn’t on a Rift, despite Oculord Palmer Luckey previously saying sunny things like “our goal is not to profit by locking people to only our hardware.” Naturally, Revive quickly got around that. Well! Things seem to have come to a happy conclusion, as Oculus have quietly removed the checks. Vivers may once again play Riftzaps using Revive.

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Quake On Oculus Rift Is Magnificent

Resolution. Anti-aliasing. Crisp text. “Image quality.” The bugbears of virtual reality in 2016.

All of this matters not in Quake. Perfect square pixels, no shading or soft shadows. Almost wordless. It is ideally-suited to VR, in theory. In practice? Best VR time ever, so far.

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PS VR vs PC VR, And Why It All Depends On Sony

The bloom has slowly been coming off VR’s rose on PC, as expensive hardware, floor space requirements, image quality issues, cabling woes, the delay to Oculus Touch controllers and too many underwhelming, bite-size launch titles transformed this from beautiful dream to compromised reality. The show’s not over, of course: this is but generation one, from both a software and hardware perspective, but it needs a new fire lit under it.

Meanwhile, on PlayStation, the excitement is on the rise rather than the wane.

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Killing Floor: Incursion VR Announced For Oculus Touch

Killing Floor bills itself as “survival horror” but it’s not really. Don’t get me wrong, it and its sequel Killing Floor 2 are great wave survival FPSs – with their onslaught of Zeds, waves of chainsaw-wielding monstrosities, and the positively formidable Patriarch – but jump scares and the blind panic levied by running out of ammo doesn’t exactly constitute horror, does it?

Killing Floor: Incursion [official site], the “intense” co-op VR shooter announced this week by developers Tripwire, on the other hand, looks bloody terrifying! Take a peak below, I dare you.

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Valve Launch Free VR Place Creation Tool

Having been fed so many promises during the ’90s, I really, really, really want the latest wave of VR to be a success. I’ve been suitably impressed by the few games I’ve sampled so far – which include the wonderful EVE: Valkyrie – but one area I’m interested in seeing develop is travel: how strapping on a headset will transport us to famous real-life landmarks, or fictional hot spots, games or otherwise, with the touch of a button.

Valve’s new Destinations Workshop Tools [Steam page] has just launched on Steam Early Access and lets users create and share “both real and imaginary worlds”, which sounds pretty close to what I’m after. You’ll need VR hardware to do so, of course, but Destinations itself is free.

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Oculus Rift Update Prevents Playing Rift Games on Vive

Last month, Alice reported on a hack that could let HTC Vive users sneak into the Oculus Rift party and play some of their exclusive games including Lucky’s Tale and Oculus Dreamdeck. But last week Oculus rolled out a new update with “platform integrity checks” that had supposedly ended Vive’s party crashing ways — until this weekend when the developer of Revive responded with an update of their own focused on bypassing that DRM.

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The RPG Scrollbars: Virtual Reality, RPGs, And Me

Like most people who can’t resist casually mentioning they have an HTC Vive, I recently acquired a HTC Vive. Finally, I have the ability to personally step into worlds of wonder and creativity more realistic and inspiring than anything mankind has ever created before. Instead, I’ve… uh… been playing mini-golf. Like, a lot of mini-golf. The one VR experience I could literally have better and at higher resolution by getting up going into my own town, only that wouldn’t be cool, because I wouldn’t regularly float over cliffs as I cack-handedly putt-putt away like I’m trying to join a parade.

I have no idea if virtual reality is the next big thing or just a passing fad. Even as potential fads go though, I can’t wait to see what it has in store for RPGs. As long as it’s not giant spiders in my face, obviously, I’ve been looking forward to it for a long time.

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Carrier Assault And The Future Of Eve: Valkyrie

While most of us are still waiting for our Oculus Rifts to arrive, EVE: Valkyrie [official site] has been building a name for itself as one of the most beautiful and intense VR experiences. Free with every Rift preorder, Valkyrie released last month, will be arriving later this year on the Vive, and, best of all, will sport cross-platform multiplayer between the Rift, Vive, and even Playstation VR. But despite the high praise, it’s worth questioning whether Valkyrie is capable of being more than just a brief spark in the first wave of VR games due to its somewhat simple combat and progression. I braved the blustery winds and fermented shark bits of Reykjavik, Iceland during EVE Fanfest 2016 to find out what CCP has to say.

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Virtual Reality Summit: Gloves On With The Climb

There’s always gonna be another mountain
I’m always gonna wanna make it move
Always gonna be an uphill battle
Sometimes I’m gonna have to lose
Ain’t about how fast I get there
Ain’t about what’s waiting on the other side
It’s the climb – Miley Cyrus, 2009

One of the most promising VR experiences I had at GDC came courtesy of Crytek’s rock climbing Oculus Rift project, The Climb [official site].

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Revive Lets Rift Games Run On Vive

Cybersoftware made specifically for the Oculus Rift may end up playable on HTC Vive too, thanks to fancy technological wrangling. Available now is the Revive Compatibility Layer, described as “a proof-of-concept compatibility layer between the Oculus SDK and OpenVR”. We can get technical later but, basically, the Rift platformer Lucky’s Tale and the Oculus DreamDeck demo collection can run on Vive through this software. Possibly other things. Possibly even more things as development continues.

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The First Must-Have VR App: Virtual Desktop

VR, be it Vive, be it Oculus Rift or something else, is currently primarily discussed in terms of games, but given that what we’re fundamentally talking about is a new paradigm for computer displays, that’s hardly the be all and end all of it. There may well be various applications of VR in other fields – medical, scientific, tourism, military, porn, to name but a few – but general desktop computing is something that pretty much all of us have in common.

A question which has occurred to me since almost the earliest days of this stuff has been “can I use VR goggles instead of a monitor?” Less physical space but more virtual space, and the possibility of doing Minority Report-y things with the operating system. Virtual Desktop is the first attempt at meaningfully answering that question, and it’s about as essential a VR application as there is right now – but it also demonstrates why the technology just isn’t quite there yet.

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Oculus Rift Guide: Everything You Need To Know Before You Consider Buying One

The Oculus Rift is here. Not on a showfloor for a brief demonstration, but in our homes, where I’ve been able to play with it for the past week. I’ve tried official games, apps and movies, and I’ve experimented with some of the unofficial software available, and I’m ready to answer questions. Want to know how easy it to use, whether it’ll make you vom, and what the games are like? Read on.

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RPS Verdict: Oculus Launch Titles And Touch Controls

Pip and Adam are out in the wilds of GDC, hunting the grounds of the convention centre and the streets around for the most interesting people and games in the world today. In one dark room, in an unassuming building on a busy street, they found a crowd of virtual worlds.

This was the Oculus Rift Game Day, in which the VR devices were on display along with selected launch titles. From sport to slaughter and strategy to stealth-horror, here are our thoughts on the first wave of VR games. And our first verdict on the launch window and the all-important Touch controllers.

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Will Virtual Reality Work On Gaming Laptops?

The majority of gamers play on desktops. It’s the most cost-effective, modular way of building a system. As such, advice on specifications from VR manufacturers like Oculus (the Rift) and HTC (the Vive) has focused on desktop hardware. Over the last few years, though, the relative cost of portable gaming components has decreased while their performance increased. Gaming laptops are now a realistic option for people who want to play even the most demanding games.

Virtual reality is different, however. Excitement about VR transcends platforms, but if you run a portable rig, whether it’s up to the task is a much harder question. I went looking for answers.

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