VR: The Time For Tech Demos Is Over

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While everyone is buzzing about VR right now, I honestly don't think any of the platforms have anything close to what you could call a line-up of games just yet. I think realistically we are looking at next holiday season and beyond.

The next few months are crucial; if Sony continues to execute in a software-led way and proves its willingness to properly invest in a launch line-up, that will comfortably negate any hardware specification lead its opponents may have. If Valve and Oculus step up to the plate and start to show off a hand of software that rivals Sony's, though, then things get really interesting. Sony will still have a more appealing mass-market play; but great software on all platforms would be an amazing coup for VR in general, and just as a rising tide lifts all boats, that kind of competition between the VR players could truly boost the sector as a whole.
 
Joined
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Modelled hair still looks like stewed assholes anywhere but in tech demos and we're supposed to be all over VR?
 

yourgrandma

[H]ard|Gawd
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You can have a killer app and incredible hardware sales and still not manage to have any staying power for more then a few years due to the nature of VR being mostly a gimmick.
 

KJ43

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Games are a must, but content in general to show off the versatility of vr as well.....movies, experiences, etc.
 

HeadRusch

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Don't you guys think expecting Killer Apps to appear before the market has even *launched its first generation of headsets* borders on being a little ridiculous......
 

SeymourGore

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They just need to make Starsiege: Tribes playable and enjoyable in a VR environment and I will say goodbye to the real world.
 

Advil

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I think we are getting closer but if I have to be critical of something in particular it's control interfaces. A game pad or a couple of hands on spatial controllers can't do everything. It's going to be insanely hard to use a conventional keyboard when you can't see it. And it's immersion breaking even if you can manage it blind.

Until new control interfaces reach a level of precision where it's both high fidelity and intuitive full immersion VR just isn't going to reach its potential.
 

crusty_juggler

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You'll notice the buzzword "experiences" being thrown around a lot by HTC and Valve - which translates to VR walking simulator. It makes sense, as room scale is perfectly suited for such titles. "Yo dog, I heard you like walking in your walking simulator..."

But seriously, the VR launch titles seem like something you'd find on an Ouya or Wii. Lame motion control gimmick games and unheard-of Indie titles.
Don't you guys think expecting Killer Apps to appear before the market has even *launched its first generation of headsets* borders on being a little ridiculous......
Possibly. What is certainly ridiculous is expecting a hardware platform with a $1,500+ entry fee to gain any ground without must-have software. It's the same chicken and the egg scenario that caused Valve's previous hardware launch to fail.
 

kring

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I am getting cold feet on my Oculus pre-order. a week out from supposed ship date, the 30 titles are pretty weak, best look to be EVE & Lucy's... Elite might look nice but not a very enjoyable game overall (I have horizons already) I am suprised we havn't heard anything on ship dates and key games like Minecraft are not VR compatible and were not part of the 30 launch games, and now the Star Citizen boards are abuzz that VR isn't coming anytime soon, and they have deviated so far from CryEngine that it's not possible to include the latest DX12 & VR engine patches. other recent games like The Division don't support it. Games from Valve don't appear to have official support either (portal probably would be awesome in VR)

I have never tried a VR headset and am very excited to, but not sure it's ready yet.... I also hear about Gen2 VR devices coming with better pixel density screens and that could be <12months off..

Bottom line - as an early adopter with a potential 3/28 ship date pre-order ---- I'm not actually feeling comfortable I made the right call, that's not good news to Oculus, HTC and others... and I certainly won't be spending money on a bunch of possible games if I decide not to keep this thing... e.g. all the $10-$20 games a person needs to buy in order to "demo" the VR Technology.
 

Yakk

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I like the tinkering I've done with VR so far, but I'm waiting on this one. The only setup I'm interested in so far is the actually the one from Sony. For PC I'm thinking 2nd gen products might start to be mature enough.
 

Snowdog

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Don't you guys think expecting Killer Apps to appear before the market has even *launched its first generation of headsets* borders on being a little ridiculous......

I don't think there will be a Killer App, and it may not be what is really needed (in a sense the game worlds may already exist).

IMO what VR needs a killer control mechanism, that lets you play FP Shooters and RPGs, seated, without getting motion sick.

Why FP Shooters and RPGs. Because these are the premier FP experiences. They are already deep and rich. The whole point of VR is to put you there in the first person, so third person/RTS games are weird in VR, and miss the point. Really what VR gives you is the ability to be a character in the world in full FP perspective. You need a way to navigate those worlds. Think of WoW/Fallout etc, being right there in first person VR.

Why seated? Treadmills are great for demos, but there is no way in hell that most people will actually want to explore the worlds of Fallout/WoW in the long term while running on treadmill, not to mention the tiny minority that you would ever convince to buy a VR treadmill. Realistically, for enjoyable, relaxing exploration of fantasy worlds, people need to be able to sit and explore freely, and not get motion sick.

To do this may require wirless VR so you can sit in a rotating chair and not tangle your cords. Caramack has discussed using a Swivel chair as a way of Navigating with Gear VR.

Without the ability to explore the rich FP worlds that are created, I think VR doesn't stand a chance.

Overall I am skeptical of VR really taking off, but if it survives, I could be really tempted if I can play future versions of Witcher/Fallout with a 4K wireless VR setup while seated, without worrying about motion sickness.
 

steakman1971

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For once, I'm not going to be an early adopter. Been there done that several times in the past - remember the Voodoo, Voodoo2? Yeah, I spent a fortune on those when I was in college. To be honest, glquake was wicked.
Still, the price for VR right now is too high for me. I could afford it, but I know 2-3 years from now - we will have better products, must-have games, and lower costs. Who knows, VR could disappear...its not established yet. The technology is hear. The demos are cool. But the prices! Damn!
 

fwiler1

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I'll do the Sony gig first. Even if the quality isn't up to snuff.
I would like to go all in with Oculus or Vive, but the issue is controls. Without consistency, I believe fragmentation will be the largest hurdle for developers.

I think the lowest common denominator will be the winning combo, which I think is Oculus.
As cool as being able to stand up and walk around sounds cool, it won't pan out for wide adoption.
 

Cmdrmonkey

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lol at anyone who thinks having heavy, awkward goggles strapped to your face to play games is anything more than a passing fad like motion controls or 3D.
 

crusty_juggler

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lol at anyone who thinks having heavy, awkward goggles strapped to your face to play games is anything more than a passing fad like motion controls or 3D.
First off, it's heavy, awkward, expensive as all hell goggles. And secondly, there are no games.
 

zalazin

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More Hype you need a shitload of PC to run VR . Just an another attempt to sucker consumers to buy a high powered rig. Another passing fad.........
 

ZodaEX

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More Hype you need a shitload of PC to run VR . Just an another attempt to sucker consumers to buy a high powered rig. Another passing fad.........

No, if that was true then I wouldn't still be playing my Virtualboy and watching Saban's VR Troopers every week/almost daily.
 

Ruffy

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As much as I'd hate it, some kind of social app going viral would really help push VR.
 

crusty_juggler

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As much as I'd hate it, some kind of social app going viral would really help push VR.
You're forgetting the factors that made social networking and mobile devices popular.

Mobile devices are public status symbols. If you don't have a fancy phone, you're a loser. And social networking became popular because it allowed self-absorbed twats to tell everyone how cool they (think) they are. Both go together like peanut butter and chocolate; one can flaunt their hi-tech phone to all the plebes while simultaneously bragging on Facebook about the wicked sick STi they just financed.

You can't behave like a pretentious braggadocio while tethered to a gaming rig, wandering around blind and waving motion controllers. VR headset makers need some sort of device you can wear in public while screaming "Look at me, I can afford this thing and my life is SO interesting!" if they want to go the social route. Until then, you're just a solitary nerd in the basement playing video games on a couple grand in niche hardware, and that ain't gonna bring in the sweet sweet likes.
 
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