Let’s talk about Virtual Reality.
This past weekend I got to experience firsthand exactly what VR is like through the Oculus Rift. I have to say…I had expectations and I had a bit of pre-knowledge going in after trying out the Samsung VR, but what I experienced with the Oculus was beyond what I thought it could be. Everything from the rendering to the sound quality blew me away.
The coolest part of the whole thing was definitely the level of immersion. I thought maybe some peripheral stuff would be added and maybe it would have some kind of 3D effect similar to what the Samsung had shown plus maybe some of that 3DS stuff, but NO—this was a fully immersive, fully rendered, 360 degree world. Even something as cartoony as Lucky’s Tale was an amazing feat to behold. To everyone outside the headset, it looked like a typical platformer like Sly Cooper, but inside the headset it was a completely different experience. You and your eyes are literally the camera and when you stand up, it adjusts to where your camera in the game is. When you move forward to look at something closely it adjusts your camera closer to whatever that is. It could be behind you or above you and the camera will react the way your vision would in real life. It may sound simplistic, but when you’re in it it’s different.
So, I’m excited.
VR seems to be taking off and it honestly has way more bite than bark. Not only is it selling well, it’s also picking up even more universal steam. HTC held a conference in China where they announced a brand new investment endeavor that will likely skyrocket VR to the very top. They created an organization called the Asia-Pacific Virtual Reality Industry Alliance (APVRA) that would be tasked with accelerating the development of the VR market. Huge names involved like Warner Bros., Disney, Lionsgate, NVIDIA, Ubisoft, and more deep pockets to sweeten the deal. The project will no doubt launch many ventures into exploring the technology and building up every single use for it.
And there are TONS of uses.
VRS.org has put together a list of applications for VR and it is mind-blowing. Everything from Sports to Engineering to Film…there’s no limit to what a simulated reality could be used for. And that gets me even more excited. I’ve been lucky enough to be alive during a huge technological boom and this is just the next step upward until we have flying cars. Maybe even hover-boards for real this time?
Anyway, If you haven’t tried it out yet, some select Best Buy stores have VR to sample. I recommend it because it really doesn’t do it justice just seeing Markiplier play around with it. Inside that world it is a fulllworld that will captivate and hold you. It’s real and once we start developing environments that look like our own, you might not even recognize the difference.
Got thoughts or expectations on VR? Where do you think it will take us and are you excited to find out? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter.