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Oculus: VR "one of the most important technologies in the history of mankind”

Oculus: VR "one of the most important technologies in the history of mankind”

Thu 06 Feb 2014 10:59pm GMT / 5:59pm EST / 2:59pm PST
TechnologyDICE 2014

Palmer Luckey on the huge impact VR will have and the challenges that remain

In his first ever DICE Summit presentation, Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey talked about the fast pace at which VR technology has been accelerating and how he believes it will radically change entertainment in the near future. His belief in virtual reality is so strong that he ended his talk saying that "VR is going to be one of the most important technologies in the history of mankind." Unlike other technologies, he thinks that VR has been in the popular consciousness for a long time now, so it's a lot less hard of a sell to the mainstream.

And Luckey does indeed see VR going mainstream. While many games are complicated for older generations to play (an FPS, for example, takes a lot of skills) everyone inherently knows how to look around and explore an environment. So Luckey believes that VR will be able to open up gaming to a far wider audience than ever before. And it will be games that lead the VR charge, because more than any other medium games are driven by the advancement of technology. He noted that games are "reaching a point of diminishing returns," and while we have better graphics, better gameplay, and better hardware than in the past, none of these things are fundamentally changing games and the way we play. "VR is the first tech in a long time that makes games feel different. VR opens the door for limitless innovation," Luckey said.

The games industry will likely push VR technology forward, but the impact will be felt across entertainment and many other industries, Luckey believes. "The people who work on VR today will define not just the games industry but the entire entertainment industry," he said. Additionally, people in movies, architecture, simulation training and other fields will learn from what the games business does with VR. In fact, Luckey said that digital communications could be revolutionized by VR. "There's a reason people still meet face to face. There's something you can get from real life interaction that you can't yet get from virtual interaction... But VR will allow for a lot of these things and make you feel like you're in the same place even if you're not," he said.

Some of the biggest challenges to VR technology today include VR Game Design, Spacial Audio, VR Input, Haptics, Face Tracking, and Vection. Of these, VR Input could be the biggest challenge, Luckey noted. We don't yet have a good input tech to reach out into the virtual world and interact with it. And Haptics are going to need to improve, to allow for actual differences in feeling and texture, rather than just vibration.

Looking more specifically at the VR experiences developers are creating now, Luckey said the biggest thing to wrestle with is a sense of presence. Presence is what fools your mind into really thinking you're someplace you're not. "If you think about the first time that Neo jumped off a building in the Matrix, it was difficult because on a subconscious level his brain told him it was dangerous," Luckey said as an example. Luckey sees this sense of presence getting better and better with VR so that flying, falling and other actions feel real. VR will make the connection between the player and the environment stronger than ever, he said.

Moving forward with the technology, there's lots of work to be done. "The Oculus Rift dev kit is pretty primitive compared to where it needs to go," Luckey admitted. He said VR is moving incredibly fast now compared to the decades of stagnation that it's seen. And he believes that it's inevitable with so many people building VR tech that there will be huge breakthroughs. "It's not too long (within the next 5-10 years) that we're going to have screen technology that goes beyond the resolution of the human eye," he said. And those bulky Rift goggles? Forget 'em. Eventually we'll get away from the heavy goggles to make something that's as small as the glasses a person might wear for corrective lenses. Furthermore, Luckey said that mobile chipsets will be integrated into the headsets themselves, and "when that happens VR will become ubiquitous and affordable," he noted.

While the hardware will get better, VR will ultimately be defined by the content creators. One barrier they have is latency - which Luckey said exists in the software but not as much in the hardware. The game really needs to match how you move your head to what's on screen to have as little latency as possible. High frame rates are also hugely important to maintaining a sense of presence. It's all very early still, and Luckey said what we've all seen so far is merely the "tip of the iceberg."

46 Comments

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,246 2,233 1.0
Popular Comment
"VR is going to be one of the most important technologies in the history of mankind."
Can we hold back the pretentious a little?
"There's a reason people still meet face to face. There's something you can get from real life interaction that you can't yet get from virtual interaction... But VR will allow for a lot of these things and make you feel like you're in the same place even if you're not,"
There is something ironic and contradictory going on here. People still meet face to face yet he talks of using a device that prevents a face to face meeting.

I'm not trying to say OR isn't a great device or that VR isn't going to be a widely accepted and used technology some day in the future but to claim it's one of the most important pieces of tech in human history is a gross slight against many other technologies honestly deserving such praise.

Posted:6 months ago

#1

Paul Jace
Merchandiser

904 1,335 1.5
Popular Comment
I agree with Jim although I'm alittle bit more critical. Not specifically towards Oculus Rift but the latest VR craze in general. I think it's going to be just another 3D gaming-esque fad(the glasses wearing one, not 3D graphics). Five years from now we will look back at VR the same way we now look back at 3D gaming from 2011, as little more than a minor footnote in gaming history. Like the Power Glove.

Posted:6 months ago

#2

Peter Kasim
Animator

3 11 3.7
Popular Comment
Both of you will be eating your words. That's an incredibly short sighted view to take. Luckey isn't talking about VR in it's current form, he's thinking long term like an innovator should. Once the tech is light and affordable enough so it can be contained in a pair of standard-sized glasses, and people can have unhindered, latency free meetings with their relatives in distant countries, we'll look back at facetime and skype and think of it as all incredibly quaint. It's a matter of time but It''l get there for certain

This is nothing like 3D tv which adds nothing to user experience but a superficial and frankly slightly jarring sense of "depth". This is a chance to take interaction to it's logical conclusion - total 360 degree immersion. He nails it when he says input and haptics will be the biggest obstacles but given time these can - WILL 0- be overcome

Posted:6 months ago

#3

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,246 2,233 1.0
Peter, I suspect we'll have direct optical feeds before we get to the point that visual perfect VR in a pair of common glasses comes to fruition.

Posted:6 months ago

#4

Asif A. Khan, CPA
Financial Reporter

31 86 2.8
I am with Palmer and Oculus VR. The new wave of VR user interface could be as big as multitouch or GUI. People are always skeptical at first. I love my C prompt, who needs windows? Whether or not Oculus Rift VR will be a success as a product is another story, but the VR movement is just getting started. Disruption may be scary, but resistance is futile.

Posted:6 months ago

#5

Shane Sweeney
Academic

355 269 0.8
Popular Comment
He's 21, if he didn't have some sort of over valued sense of purpose I would be disappointed.

Posted:6 months ago

#6

James Prendergast
Research Chemist

735 430 0.6
I agree with the people who are more sceptical. At the moment VR isn't anywhere near mainstream adoption or readiness - the two being very different issues! Worst of all, it's a tech that they admit will be good 10-20 years in the future... is that a viable business plan? Research, sure - we have all these wondrous technologies going through research (such as slow discharge capacitor batteries, graphene and CNT-enhanced building materials) but that's not the same as pinning a business onto that tech right this minute. That's a lot of investment over a long number of years.

Putting that aside back to my first point:

We get to the 3D tech bubble side of mainstream adoption. 3D is tonnes better than it was when it was first introduced but everyone and their grandmother has two HDTVs in their homes that they bought within the last five years - they're not going to fork out again. Similarly, the cost of entry to a VR headset currently is a powerful base unit and an expensive peripheral that's barely supported with any software... what's going to be the push that the consumer needs to want to overcome those hurdles? We've had too many "advances" in technology too close together for people to just throw out their old tech.

On to the second point of readiness: ...and this is in a generation where tablet PCs are probably used more than desktop devices in the home. Where the Wii and social webspaces are vast proof of concept that the mass market wants to interact, to be connected and yet here's a device that will instantly remove anyone from the room of people they're with. A device that is exclusionary in its very design essence. You stick a VR headset on and what's the person next to you on the couch going to think? It's even worse than putting a noise-cancelling headset on because there's even less "real" sensory information from the room. Let's not even fool ourselves that the other person would just stick on their own VR headset and join the other person - we're going to have another power-hungry base unit in the room as well? What sort of household are we talking about here?

Further to that notion above that VR is excellent at meetings and whatnot - how does it improve on Facetime/Skype et al.? What's the grab? Those video services allow multiple people to interact on both sides of the connection, they also allow other real world objects to be part of the discussion and/or used by anyone on either side. VR meetings and chats are a step backward - with less functionality.

I guess, in summary, I think VR is a cool technology but it's coming WAY before its time and won't ever get the adoption needed to sustain a business or long-term research investment and the interest from investors won't last long enough to sustain it by itself.

Posted:6 months ago

#7

Brook Davidson
Artist / 3D design

63 95 1.5
Popular Comment
Well to put simply. I honestly agree with Luckey. VR can very easily become one of the most important technologies in human history if it is done right.

Not sure how many of you realize this, but it can literally change the way every single individual lives their life. It can be used in all sorts of applications, from teaching / training, to communications, even survival. Everything all of a sudden becomes hands on with out having to literally go anywhere.

I have friends and family who live a long distance away. The closest I can get to them is a web cam. A virtual Reality headset will give me an opportunity to feel like we live in the same place. That distance ... is all of a sudden gone.

I admit, I am just as big of a VR Nut as Luckey is. I have high hopes for the technology and it is one of the reasons I was so intent on joining the game industry. I wanted to be part of the development and creation of new worlds for people to enjoy.

Posted:6 months ago

#8

Renaud Charpentier
Lead Designer

64 138 2.2
Matrix / Surrogates / Count Zero... not tomorrow or even the day after tomorrow...

Posted:6 months ago

#9

Andreia Quinta
Creative & People Photographer

214 535 2.5
I would hardly put VR in the same bag as the light bulb or phone. In fact I'd repeat my reply from the John Carmack article.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Andreia Quinta on 7th February 2014 12:49pm

Posted:6 months ago

#10

Aaron Johnson

21 34 1.6
Your link doesn't work Andreia.

As much as I'd like to see this come to fruition, I agree with Palmer that latency is a huge hurdle.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Aaron Johnson on 7th February 2014 4:41pm

Posted:6 months ago

#11

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
These statements are outlandish and simply add to the hype machine VR has become.

Like motion controls I dont see VR working with every type of game. I mean why would i need to use it for a few rounds in tetris and what happens if I like games like Castle Crashers. The nature of certain games simply don't require VR

I understand it will be a better 3d expirience but i dont think it will be a technology to revolutionize everything. It is no Industrial Revolution. I dont think it will be much of a better expirience than what there is now, and people will be playing much in the same way as they always have... a couch expirience, just with a better screen. And if Im wrong in my assumptions feel free to tell me.

And my worries is how much is it gonna cost? Why does this have to be yet another gaming platform people have to support. Why cant it be just a pair of goggles I can plug into any PC or home game console.

Why cant developers simply make a game for console or PC and make it have the ability to be played on a VR display like they did with 3DTV's?

And I can see other technologies changing things such as holographic, Augamented Reality and Direct optical or neural feed, like in SwordArt Online and The Matrix.

To all honesty the only way i would even try this is if someone like SONY puts out a pair of VR goggles that dont have the guts or processors of a gaming device, which will lower the cost and I can use with things I already own, like a PC or home console. And since its a peripheral i wouldnt pay too much for it. Also games can be made to run with or without it.

New technology is great but it doesnt always make for better games, just like what happened with the Neo Geo and 3DO and Jaguar. And even Motion Control was only good for a select few games.

And the problem I find with VR as with motion control is that it will probabley work for a few select games, but overall, when you need to make complicated actions a standard gamepad is best suited for them. And the second problem is moving around and about the gaming environment. For motion controlled games, you can attack, kick and punch, but when you need to move around and about the environment or objects, your limited to the space in your living room and the result is usually an on rails game experience.

Im just in a wait and see position... but in the meantime.... I just dont belive in all the hype.

Edited 3 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 7th February 2014 5:26pm

Posted:6 months ago

#12

Chris Payne
Associate Lead Programmer

40 129 3.2
I keep hearing people say it won't go mass-market and doesn't suit all games, as if it can't possibly succeed unless it eclipses the Xbox and Playstation userbase combined. But there is already a market for steering wheels, gaming chairs, and plastic things that clip onto a WiiMote. Those customers are already buying what little extra immersion they can find. VR is head and shoulders above any of those products - if you've actually TRIED the Rift dev kit you'll know that the effect is far better than poxy stereo glasses, and certainly not "a couch experience, just with a better screen".

It will be a niche market to begin with, but a healthy one that can only grow as more people try it and discover what they're missing.

Posted:6 months ago

#13

Edward Buffery
Pre-production Manager

148 96 0.6
Regardless of how well the Oculus Rift does in retail, I have no doubt that VR in general will become one of the most important technologies in our history. Maybe not in my lifetime, maybe via wires that plug into us Matrix-style rather than by wearing anything on our bodies, but it will get there in the end and it will change the world. It will certainly not be limited to games or entertainment, I can see industry-changing applications in therapy, training, education, communication, marketing, any human-controlled processes which require tiny, accurate motions such as surgery or many kinds of scientific experiment, and many more. When the technology gets there, the ability to (subjectively) put your consciousness inside something other than your own body will change the way we see the world and educate each other.

Palmer Lucky may or may not see his Rift take off in the scale and direction he currently imagines, but in decades to come when people write about the beginnings of VR, his name will be remembered.

Posted:6 months ago

#14

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,246 2,233 1.0
But there is already a market for steering wheels, gaming chairs, and plastic things that clip onto a WiiMote. Those customers are already buying what little extra immersion they can find. VR is head and shoulders above any of those products
Chris, those people are not going to put a piece of bulky headgear on their heads to go bowling.

We're never going to go into a elderly retirement home and find them looking like an aged Daft Punk concert.

VR will be incredibly important and do a lot of great things. But in its current iteration, it will not have any kind of mass market appeal. None. And by the time it does become stylish enough (and powerful enough), I suspect we'll be onto direct optical never inputs. No headgear (daft Punk or pencil thin frames) required.

Posted:6 months ago

#15
But in its current iteration, it will not have any kind of mass market appeal.
Totally disagree, the vast majority of people who try it are pretty much blown away. It sells itself, that is what is needed for new innovations to win mass appeal in a hurry. The Oculus has that in spades.

In this industry which is all about the latest and greatest,when the Oculus is released to the public, it is going to create quite a stir. It reminds me a little abit of the Wii when it first came out, you didnt quite know what to make of it, you tried it, you like it, you bought. Now ratch that up about 10x or 100x times and you'll get what I predict we will see in the coming years with VR.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Todd Weidner on 7th February 2014 8:33pm

Posted:6 months ago

#16

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,246 2,233 1.0
Totally disagree, the vast majority of people who try it are pretty much blown away. It sells itself, that is what is needed for new innovations to win mass appeal in a hurry. The Oculus has that in spades.
I know it's a great product and that those that try it, love it. But it's not the masses that are trying it, it's us.

The masses are not going to put that on their head to play games.

Posted:6 months ago

#17

Edward Buffery
Pre-production Manager

148 96 0.6
It'll be down to the relatively small crowd that buys it and enthuses about it to FORCE every damn person that comes to their homes to put it on and give it a try. I'm not sure if I'll get one myself, but if I do then I'll be doing that. Hell, I'll even get my parents to try it.

Posted:6 months ago

#18

Brook Davidson
Artist / 3D design

63 95 1.5
The masses are not going to put that on their head to play games.
How could anyone possibly know that for certain? Is your opinion some how linked to the masses minds and your able to read everyone's thoughts?

Furbys, yoyos, rubiks cubes, tomogachis, elmo, spongebob ... should I continue? I don't think anyone ever really expected any of those things to become as popular as they did. Point is, trying to predict what will or will not attract the masses, is like trying to predict exactly where a needle will fall after throwing it off a building.

Frankly, if the only issue is having to put something on your head, I don't think that is going to cause much of a concern for most people after they try it. Something a lot more pressing would have to be present to prevent someone from using such a device. Such as nausea, which is one of the main reasons it didn't work well in the past, not to mention the limiting technology we had back then.

Nausea still exists, but it's far less .. intrusive compared to past VR attempts.

I do however, like how some of you like to speak for the masses, like as if your a psychic or something lol.

Posted:6 months ago

#19

Paul Johnson
Managing Director / Lead code monkey

810 1,013 1.3
Furbys, yoyos, rubiks cubes, tomogachis, elmo, spongebob
Perfect example. These things still about are they?

Flash, meet pan.

Posted:6 months ago

#20

Brook Davidson
Artist / 3D design

63 95 1.5
Perfect example. These things still about are they?
Think Spongebob still is, and furbys recently tried to make a come back.

While these things never stuck, as most things do not forever, the main point was that anything you don't expect can easily become popular overnight. Memes are a great example of this as well. I just don't think it's smart to try and predict what will become the next big thing and what will not. No point in trying because there is no definite.

A person can say the masses will not put a device on their face, but there is no way they could actually say that factually. To be honest, I didn't expect the whole wii mote thing to ever take off, and I think many people thought the same exact thing. However, it did far better then I believe most imagined it would.

Posted:6 months ago

#21

Robin Clarke
Producer

26 50 1.9
Trying to gauge the mainstream appeal of VR based on how well it can run games designed for 2D screens and controllers is like trying to predict the games that would be designed for consoles and home computers based on what worked in the arcade.

Every serious simulation hobbyist will be buying an Oculus kit. There are tens of millions of them, happily pursuing their hobby outside of the view of the games press. Then a few years later the tech will be cheap and refined enough to break out to a wider audience.

As for VR being an important technology - would anyone seriously argue that mobile telecommunications, the internet, graphical user interfaces and real time 3D graphics haven't been transformative? Everything starts out as a novelty. The phone is a great comparison - it changed the way that people communicated in fundamental ways, with far-reaching consequences.

Anyone who has followed the trajectory of Oculus's prototypes and demos is not expecting a "big cumbersome helmet". It's bizarre that some people simply can't get their heads around the idea of more advanced tech existing than what has been on shop shelves for years. The same people who scoffed at the start of the last console generation that the target renders wouldn't be possible in real time for decades, when five years later games that far exceeded those aims were routine.

And, seriously, "VR cuts you off from the room"? That's like arguing that you can't hold a conversation in a cinema. "People won't put something on their head?" People pay $500+ for consoles with no proven software libraries, and buy force feedback wheels, plastic guitars and balance boards. They are going to put things on their heads.

Posted:6 months ago

#22

Aaron Johnson

21 34 1.6
They are going to put things on their heads.
Please see 3D TV glasses.

From what I've seen, the steepest hill for VR is that it really needs to be physically worn before a customer gets that Aha! moment. Which means a demonstration-heavy marketing campaign. Which reaches people close to the retailers you partner with or the malls/events your marketing tour travels to. How to reach the customer who's on a ranch in Montana or up in Whistler or otherwise doesn't have easy access to a Best Buy? There's a LOT of them out there.

Posted:6 months ago

#23

Brook Davidson
Artist / 3D design

63 95 1.5
Please see 3D TV glasses.
The difference is that are entirely different concepts. The main issue with the whole 3D gimmick isn't because of the glasses it requires. It's because no one cares much for viewing 3D broadcasts on their TV. The whole 3D glasses thing to most people is strictly a movie theater thing. Heck, even I thought the whole 3D TVs and 3D monitors for games was stupid.

How ever .. VR is an entirely different beast. It will pump up the immersion in game that many people would have never expected to be possible.

All im saying is I have not once heard someone say they didn't like 3D specifically because it required you to wear glasses. Usually that is only a very small part of it. The biggest part is they simply don't feel it's worth the trouble.

Posted:6 months ago

#24

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,246 2,233 1.0
The difference is that are entirely different concepts. The main issue with the whole 3D gimmick isn't because of the glasses it requires. It's because no one cares much for viewing 3D broadcasts on their TV.
And you're telling me not to speak for the masses.

You call 3D a gimmick because you think the masses don't want to wear glasses to watch 3D TV at home yet can't see how wearing a piece of headgear to view something isn't a gimmick too? You expect them to be more willing to pay hundreds of dollars for currently bulky and enclosed headgear when they won't even dish out a few dollars for easy to wear 3D glasses.

Those fads listed before didn't require anybody to put a large helmet on their head nor cost hundreds of dollars or require thousands of dollars in computer hardware to operate. Will it in 20-30 years become small enough to operate self contained inside a pair of common glasses? Maybe. But by that point we'll be looking a direct optical feeds anyway....skip the glasses, and our imperfect eyes, altogether.

Posted:6 months ago

#25

Brook Davidson
Artist / 3D design

63 95 1.5
And you're telling me not to speak for the masses.

You call 3D a gimmick because you think the masses don't want to wear glasses to watch 3D TV at home yet can't see how wearing a piece of headgear to view something isn't a gimmick too? You expect them to be more willing to pay hundreds of dollars for currently bulky and enclosed headgear when they won't even dish out a few dollars for easy to wear 3D glasses.

Those fads listed before didn't require anybody to put a large helmet on their head nor cost hundreds of dollars or require thousands of dollars in computer hardware to operate. Will it in 20-30 years become small enough to operate self contained inside a pair of common glasses? Maybe. But by that point we'll be looking a direct optical feeds anyway....skip the glasses, and our imperfect eyes, altogether.
I am not speaking for the masses, I am speaking for myself and I am only pointing out that it wasn't specifically the glasses that prevented it from becoming main stream. It was many other factors as well.

VR is very different. It doesn't just change your viewing experience, it changes your entire gameplay experience. It brings a higher level of immersion to video games.

3D required you to buy a 3DTV that costs more then a few dollars.
The head gear is more appeal toward PC gamers as of right now who already tend to own thousand dollar gaming rigs. So how exactly is that an issue? Also who is to say it will not eventually land itself on consoles?

Remember it's not the consumer version yet and they have already specifically said by the time it's released it will be much smaller.

As for your whole direct optical feed thing .. you really don't seem to understand technology all that well if you think that is going to happen first. That is like skipping the invention of the calculator and going straight to a 64bit cpu.

Things tend to happen in an order. If you right .. then so be it, but as of right now .. you are only making baseless assumptions. I am being reasonable with what we currently have now and what we will likely have in the next 10 years. Not some sci fi technology thing we don't know if it will or will not exist at all at that point.

You are getting to far ahead of yourself. Also ... the OR isn't a large helmet, you are being ridiculously over exaggerating. also as I said they can make it smaller. Much smaller, Even now. It's only that big because it's not a consumer model it's meant for ease of access for devs.

Posted:6 months ago

#26

Morgan King
Animator

46 90 2.0
I'm surprised by the vehement rejection of this clearly-inevitable near-future technology by some here - I suppose every technological change leaves those unwilling to adapt to it behind, but I'd be inclined to think the community here would be forward-thinking enough to at least entertain the idea of VR as a sea change.

Posted:6 months ago

#27

Jim Webb
Executive Editor/Community Director

2,246 2,233 1.0
I think some of you may be missing part of my statements. I do see OR and VT are incredible pieces of technology that may one be nearly ubiquitous. What I found grossly overstated is the measure of it's worth against other truly profound technologies of the past as well as the idea that it will be accepted immediately by the masses despite the current requirements to operate it. Accepted by us geeks and accepted by the masses is not the same thing.

I can't wait to try out the consumer version of it myself when that day comes but hearing such overzealous talk about it now puts me off When Peter Molyneux used to proclaim his forthcoming creation(s) would change the world, the industry took him to task over it. You don't should from the mountaintops that your product is going to be the greatest thing since sliced bread and not expect the arrogance to backfire. That doesn't necessarily mean it won't be, but it certainly turns a lot of noses.

When you put yourself on the same stage as the light bulb, integrated circuit, transistor and combustion engine, expect a few earnest and valid skeptics.

Posted:6 months ago

#28

Marty Howe
Director

59 25 0.4
Palmer you might need a slap or 2, to bring you back to reality. Release the product into the marketplace, then we can measure its success. Less talk, more do.

Posted:6 months ago

#29
We can not fault the young man for his fervor and passion.

This is Palmer's, John Lennon "...bigger than Jesus..." moment, and part of the reason DICE invited him to speak!

"VR is not big... its the consoles' that got small!" (K. Williams, 2014)

Posted:6 months ago

#30


Steve Jobs.

[Source - http://stevejobsdailyquote.com]

Posted:6 months ago

#31

Brook Davidson
Artist / 3D design

63 95 1.5
@Kevin

Lovely comment ... I enjoyed the quotes immensely, Thank you.

Posted:6 months ago

#32

Lionel Pacheco
Studying Mechatronics Engineering

2 7 3.5
@Rick Lopez
Please educate yourself before making uninformed statements about this technology.
Like motion controls I dont see VR working with every type of game. I mean why would i need to use it for a few rounds in tetris and what happens if I like games like Castle Crashers. The nature of certain games simply don't require VR
Well of course not. No gaming device is suited to every single type of game. VR will simply be another medium with which we experience them, it won't replace them just like videogames didn't replace board games.
I understand it will be a better 3d expirience but i dont think it will be a technology to revolutionize everything. It is no Industrial Revolution. I dont think it will be much of a better expirience than what there is now, and people will be playing much in the same way as they always have... a couch expirience, just with a better screen. And if Im wrong in my assumptions feel free to tell me.
I own a devkit. It's not just "a better 3d experience", you're actually inside the computer world. That is big. And I can tell you now that to me, playing games on a monitor just seems old fashioned. A lot of people feel the same way. I would choose a 1080p rift over an 8k monitor anyday.
And my worries is how much is it gonna cost? Why does this have to be yet another gaming platform people have to support. Why cant it be just a pair of goggles I can plug into any PC or home game console.
It's $300, well within the budget of the average person. And it is a peripheral that you can plug into your PC. That's how it works, it isn't standalone system yet. One day it'll be able to plug into your console, but at the moment they aren't powerful enough to support it.
Why cant developers simply make a game for console or PC and make it have the ability to be played on a VR display like they did with 3DTV's?
Adding rift support to an existing game is trivial.
To all honesty the only way i would even try this is if someone like SONY puts out a pair of VR goggles that dont have the guts or processors of a gaming device, which will lower the cost and I can use with things I already own, like a PC or home console. And since its a peripheral i wouldnt pay too much for it. Also games can be made to run with or without it
This is exactly what the rift does today.
And I can see other technologies changing things such as holographic, Augamented Reality and Direct optical or neural feed, like in SwordArt Online and The Matrix.
Direct neural technology is going to be decades away. We won't just go from playing on screens to plugging in our brains. Head mounted displays like the rift are a crucial step in the process.
And the problem I find with VR as with motion control is that it will probabley work for a few select games, but overall, when you need to make complicated actions a standard gamepad is best suited for them. And the second problem is moving around and about the gaming environment. For motion controlled games, you can attack, kick and punch, but when you need to move around and about the environment or objects, your limited to the space in your living room and the result is usually an on rails game experience.
You don't need to make complicated actions at all. Ordinary game controls work just fine with the rift at the moment. But it takes some getting used to.

So yeah, please do a little more research on the state of VR at the moment. Being a Graphic Designer I think you'll like what you find.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Lionel Pacheco on 9th February 2014 7:57am

Posted:6 months ago

#33

Lionel Pacheco
Studying Mechatronics Engineering

2 7 3.5
I know it's a great product and that those that try it, love it. But it's not the masses that are trying it, it's us.
My mother, who hates videogames, has tried my rift and absolutely cannot stop raving about it to her friends and talking about how it's going to change the world.

Posted:6 months ago

#34

Paul James
Editor and blogger

3 1 0.3
Jim, you seem to be being wilfully obtuse here.

When Palmer is saying he believes VR is going to be one of the most important technologies in the history of mankind, he genuinely believes it. For what it's worth so do I - no pretence or fakery required.

And when he talks about VR offering a 'face to face' experience, what he means is that many of the qualities that make engaging in real, physical interaction with people can be mimicked and in some cases even enhances by VR. And to be more specific, I attended one of the world's first VR + Skype demonstrations using the Oculus Rift recently - the sense of presence and place and of sharing that space with other people offered an experience worlds way from a standard teleconference.

Finally, Palmer stating VR will be one of the most important technologies mankind has ever invented is only a slight against other technologies if it proves to be false. Furthermore, suggesting that VR is somehow not 'deserving' is frankly absurd. Out of interest, how would you measure a future technology's net worth to society and how that ranked against other offerings?

Let's revisit this discussion in 5 years and we'll see where we are, but in the mean time how about we hold an open mind instead of labelling new ideas pretentious and not 'deserving'.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Paul James on 9th February 2014 11:01am

Posted:6 months ago

#35

Klaus Preisinger
Freelance Writing

1,072 1,007 0.9
Somewhere in here is a comedy sketch about an ancient civilization in 5.000 B.C. discussing whether they should go ahead with that wheel thing, or the Virtual Boy.

But I agree that the OR is a transformative experience. Particularly when used in the way IMAX cinemas are used to shape your perspective. Earth seen from the moon type of stuff. More than photorealistic games, I believe games featuring non-euclidean level design will be one of the early tropes of the VR genre.

Posted:6 months ago

#36

Robin Clarke
Producer

26 50 1.9
It's pretty uncontroversial to say that VR will have significant applications beyond games, Jim.

Posted:6 months ago

#37

James Prendergast
Research Chemist

735 430 0.6
@ Robin Clarke

And, seriously, "VR cuts you off from the room"? That's like arguing that you can't hold a conversation in a cinema. "People won't put something on their head?" People pay $500+ for consoles with no proven software libraries, and buy force feedback wheels, plastic guitars and balance boards. They are going to put things on their heads.

And look how well that argument turned out for 3D technologies! It's great that you think that a home entertainment system is akin to a curated entertainment experience but the two are not equal or even similar in terms of expectations. People do buy things - for certain! - but buying things (as per Furbies and whatnot upthread) does not a continuously successful product make.

@Andrea Pipparolo:

1) VR will change the world.
2) Of course it will, but it's no where near ready and it won't be mass market until it is.


A pretty succinct and accurate statement given the pretensions and pre-emptive defensiveness here in the thread!

My position is firmly in number 2 - purely based on life, market, economic and social experience.

Posted:6 months ago

#38

Nick Wofford
Hobbyist

174 183 1.1
@James
The problem with 3D was how it was marketed. There are two ways to market new technology: you can say that it's fantastic and perfect and heavenly (a la 3D) or you can say that it's a prototype with flaws and mitigate expectations (a la OR). The former seems to be what you're advocating for all tech (that all tech must be perfect to release or it'll fail). But that's clearly not the case; the former strategy only leads to massive disappointment, while the latter leads to lowered (and therefore reachable) expectations.

OR has done everything right. It's not going for mass appeal. Never has been, never will. That's for the next wave of VR devices. OR is the equivalent of this: http://www.amazon.com/Ferrari-Integral-Racing-Wheel-Pedals-Pc/dp/B00GFVAVZW/ref=sr_1_2?s=videogames&ie=UTF8&qid=1391972155&sr=1-2&keywords=racing+wheel

People buy these devices. It's a niche market, but so are a ton of markets that are highly successful. Or would you argue that Ferrari is a failed company because they're outnumbered by Toyota's?

Posted:6 months ago

#39

Craig Page
Programmer

382 218 0.6
Yeah! VR is the most important thing mankind has ever made, Oculus makes penicillin and the light bulb it's *****.

But seriously, I'm excited about it. Even if I only wear the goggles while reclined on my couch, they should be more immersive than my theater setup because they cover your entire field of view.

Posted:6 months ago

#40

Nick Parker
Consultant

280 144 0.5
I have to say that the more I hear and the more I see, the less cynical I am of VR. It is not comparable to 3d for all the reasons already stated. I believe we are in the R&D phase of a S-curve which could go into a business phase, be honed, evolve and then support a wealth of games development opportunities. What is key now is not the hype and constant PR noise but availability of (investment) resource to see this through until a viable mass market device is available in five to ten years time.

Posted:6 months ago

#41
My mother, who hates videogames, has tried my rift and absolutely cannot stop raving about it to her friends and talking about how it's going to change the world.
Exactly.. ...

The Oculus is so different, so unique, so cool, its creates a new experience for people, and that gets people, even mothers and grandmothers excited. This thing sells itself and that fact alone allows this thing to have incredible market penetration.

Posted:6 months ago

#42

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
@Todd Weidner

The Oculus is so different, so unique, so cool, its creates a new experience for people, and that gets people, even mothers and grandmothers excited. This thing sells itself and that fact alone allows this thing to have incredible market penetration.

I hope I try it and feel the same way you do. I hold you to your word until I i try it. Hopefully soon.
------------------------------------

@Lionel Pacheco

Ive researched it, The only thing left for me is to try it out. However I don't think my comments are shallow and unreasonable.

Remember, most people who are developing for the rift will give a hyped up biased opinion in favor of it. only available to the developer community.

When people make outlandish statements and add to the hype machine VR has become I really don't swallow that. Or am I supposed to? People get riled up when you dont see things the way they do...

To me being in the computer world means experiencing it like the matrix or sword art online. As it is now I just feel i just seeing a better 3D that is closer to that. I mean its nice to look around with my head and stuff, but what if I have to look behind me or in and around a corner, in which my body movements don't reflect those happening on the screen? Plus im assuming It will take time to get used to, even with latency becoming less of an issue... i can also assume a lot of people will still get sick until they get used to it.

I know adding rift support is hard.


------------------------------------

MY OPINION:
Its simply a better 3D experience and brings better graphical fidelity. The way i play will be very similar how Ive been playing for the past 30 years. The only thing it brings to the table is better 3D screen, with a greater sense of "graphical" immersion.

The only thing left for me is to try it out and wonder if that extra sense of graphical immersion is enough to warrant a purchase. It also has to be at a reasonable price.

I have voiced countless times on why i think its just a better 3D screen and why i think its just a couch experience. But i want to avoid this being too long or add any wood to the fire. Everytime I say comments like that it puts me in the hot seat. So when it comes out it should speak for itself.

I find Palmer Luckey statements to be outlandish and sensationalist and far from realistic. To me technologies that mark the history of mankind is stuff like interstellar travel, living on other planets, stuff related to quantum physics, the cure to cancer... stuff like that...

not this...

http://youtu.be/MPSqM-g7_r0

Edited 11 times. Last edit by Rick Lopez on 10th February 2014 7:42pm

Posted:6 months ago

#43

Dave Sullivan
Senior Audio Designer

4 3 0.8
I'm hoping all this research will eventually result in the development of a Holodeck.

Posted:6 months ago

#44
I hope I try it
Rick why dont you hold off on any conclusions until you do try it? Its like commenting constantly on a movie or book you never saw or read.

Posted:6 months ago

#45

Rick Lopez
Illustrator, Graphic Designer

1,269 941 0.7
Hey Todd...

I have my opinions regarding VR, but I like your enthusiasm for it. I felt the same way when the Nintendo 64 hit the market. Ill defenitly try it if just to play Mirrors Edge or Hawken. Dont know if Id buy one though but ill defenitly try it.



But I wont lie. I saw a 4KTV in a Best Buy one day, and I found it amazing. The graphical fidelity allowed for a greater sense of immersion as if I can put my hand in the screen. My understanding is, that can be further enhanced by 3D stereoscopic display and optical distortion that a VR headset can provide, minus the latency issues. Then I thought of how one of my favorite games would look in VR... Mirrors Edge.



Anyway I just dont want to come off as if I was against it or biased against it. Sure I may have my opinions on it, however I just wanna be level-headed about it and in no way would I like to see it fail.

Posted:6 months ago

#46

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