The Highs and Lows of Gaming in Virtual Reality

The Highs and Lows of Gaming in Virtual Reality

Yahtzee dives face-first into the world of VR.

Read Full Article

Since Yahtzee, who is in general firmly against the general trends gaming is following actually likes VR, this suggests it may suffer some problems on full public release...

I've often chuckled quietly at friends that get sick from fps games. Recently, I got sick watching a let's play of one (to be more accurate, Yahtzee's Let's Drown Out of Quake 2), and I wondered if I'm getting old. Makes me a little apprehensive about VR.

I hadn't even thought of not being able to see the controls in relation to the headset before. Maybe that would be a good use for the Steam Controller since it has a bunch more programmable buttons on the back. I think I could get used to it, but I'd have to remap keys around the idea that I couldn't see the keyboard for games where I'd need it. Reminds me of when I had my keyboard hidden under a desk and I couldn't look at it.

flying_whimsy:
I've often chuckled quietly at friends that get sick from fps games. Recently, I got sick watching a let's play of one (to be more accurate, Yahtzee's Let's Drown Out of Quake 2), and I wondered if I'm getting old.

It's always worse to watch than to be in control.

flying_whimsy:
I've often chuckled quietly at friends that get sick from fps games. Recently, I got sick watching a let's play of one (to be more accurate, Yahtzee's Let's Drown Out of Quake 2), and I wondered if I'm getting old. Makes me a little apprehensive about VR.

VR is a whole other ball of wax. It's intentionally designed to confuse your senses, so your body reacting unfavorably is not really some sign of weakness.

Thanatos2k:

flying_whimsy:
I've often chuckled quietly at friends that get sick from fps games. Recently, I got sick watching a let's play of one (to be more accurate, Yahtzee's Let's Drown Out of Quake 2), and I wondered if I'm getting old. Makes me a little apprehensive about VR.

VR is a whole other ball of wax. It's intentionally designed to confuse your senses, so your body reacting unfavorably is not really some sign of weakness.

Its something to do with the inner-ear and eyes connection I think. The eyes sense motion but the inner-ear doesn't detect shit and thus makes your body basically say "WTF?"
Happened to me when I got to play with a very early prototype VR headset at Full Sail college in Orlando, Florida. I demo'd the tech and about a minute in I was disoriented and feeling sick and when the headset came off I was weirded out by the real world for a few minutes.
I like the concept of VR, but I'm not sure if we can overcome the body's need to connect movement with feeling movement, at least not with today's tech.

"I find it really difficult to un-learn the old instinct to use the mouse to look around, when now I can just look around to look around. "

And then I LOL-ed so hard... thanks again, mate!!! :D

You should look into VoiceAttack. It lets you bind keys to voice commands (even gives you a nice computer voice for feedback) and it works really well. I don't usually use it when I play on my monitor but with the oculus it's pretty much mandatory. Very immersive too. I say "Retract landing gear" and the nice computer voice in my cockpit says "Landing gear retracted, commander."

Juan Regular:
You should look into VoiceAttack. It lets you bind keys to voice commands (even gives you a nice computer voice for feedback) and it works really well. I don't usually use it when I play on my monitor but with the oculus it's pretty much mandatory. Very immersive too. I say "Retract landing gear" and the nice computer voice in my cockpit says "Landing gear retracted, commander."

On the same vein as this (and pardon me: I don't own Elite: Dangerous), can you remap the right analog stick to other functions, like the landing gear? If that's a ridiculous suggestion, I apologize.

Is it weird to hear Yahtzee basically gush about the Occulus? Like, to hear him say anything positive about hardware? I'm not disagreeing with what he said about it, but I'm wondering if I woke up in Bizzaro world.

Darth_Payn:
Is it weird to hear Yahtzee basically gush about the Occulus? Like, to hear him say anything positive about hardware? I'm not disagreeing with what he said about it, but I'm wondering if I woke up in Bizzaro world.

Not really. As he said himself, his problem with motion controls is that they - by design - take your focus away from the game and bring attention to themselves, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in an immersive experience. HMDs, in contrast, are designed to bring your focus further into the game and make you forget the outside world. So where he rejects the very concept of motion controls, with VR it was a matter of "is it good enough to do what it is meant to?" So it's less an issue of hardware vs... whatever... and more of distraction vs enhancement of the gaming experience.

I don't think I will ever be able to get into VR. First, there are all disadvantages. Getting lost in a game, being oblivious to your surroundings, looking like a fucking idiot shaking his head around on the couch, and making your monitor/TV pretty much useless. Oh, and making you blind before your 60s. Second, there's no way I could shell out 350 for huge expensive glasses and another 400 for a console or PC. Hopefully one of my more successful friends will buy one and I can try it out then.

Bob_McMillan:
I don't think I will ever be able to get into VR. First, there are all disadvantages. Getting lost in a game, being oblivious to your surroundings, looking like a fucking idiot shaking his head around on the couch, and making your monitor/TV pretty much useless. Oh, and making you blind before your 60s. Second, there's no way I could shell out 350 for huge expensive glasses and another 400 for a console or PC. Hopefully one of my more successful friends will buy one and I can try it out then.

If you play games to look classy maybe you do something wrong.

JSRevenge:
On the same vein as this (and pardon me: I don't own Elite: Dangerous), can you remap the right analog stick to other functions, like the landing gear? If that's a ridiculous suggestion, I apologize.

Should be possible, but it would leave you with only one stick for yawn, pitch, roll and up/sideways thrust, so not really a viable option.
Personally I can only recommend my cheap Black Widow flight stick. Can't beat HOTAS in a game like this.

slo:

Bob_McMillan:
I don't think I will ever be able to get into VR. First, there are all disadvantages. Getting lost in a game, being oblivious to your surroundings, looking like a fucking idiot shaking his head around on the couch, and making your monitor/TV pretty much useless. Oh, and making you blind before your 60s. Second, there's no way I could shell out 350 for huge expensive glasses and another 400 for a console or PC. Hopefully one of my more successful friends will buy one and I can try it out then.

If you play games to look classy maybe you do something wrong.

I was joking of course. But you never know, with a family like mine, a video of me screaming and pissing my pants in horror game using VR could end up on Facebook. I was serious though about the others.

Scars Unseen:

Darth_Payn:
Is it weird to hear Yahtzee basically gush about the Occulus? Like, to hear him say anything positive about hardware? I'm not disagreeing with what he said about it, but I'm wondering if I woke up in Bizzaro world.

Not really. As he said himself, his problem with motion controls is that they - by design - take your focus away from the game and bring attention to themselves, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in an immersive experience. HMDs, in contrast, are designed to bring your focus further into the game and make you forget the outside world. So where he rejects the very concept of motion controls, with VR it was a matter of "is it good enough to do what it is meant to?" So it's less an issue of hardware vs... whatever... and more of distraction vs enhancement of the gaming experience.

OK, now I get what he means. I played with an Occulus Rift at GDC earlier this year and, despite some hiccups, was freakin' sweet! I played this secret agent jetpack game where I flew around a city, jumping on and off buildings, and picking up briefcases and film reels. I didn't even have to LOOK at my controller to know what button did what. The only problem was I had to tilt my head at funny angles to look "straight" ahead in the game.

Scars Unseen:
Not really. As he said himself, his problem with motion controls is that they - by design - take your focus away from the game and bring attention to themselves, which is exactly the opposite of what you want in an immersive experience.

Actually, this is not entirely true, despite Yahtzee's belief. I for one have always found most motion controls to be more natural and attention-shedding than button-mashing or, worse, hunting. Probably because I'm so used to the Mouse, which is motion-control. Except the stupid Xbox Kinect was stupidly far in the other direction.

Frankly, my ideal motion-controllers would essentially be a bifurcated, motion-sensitive Dual-shock style controller.

I don't think multiplayer is completely impossible, or at least coop. If the rift doubled as a headset with a mounted microphone that you could turn on with the press of a button beside your head, then communication might be possible. Are there any tech limitations that would get in the way of that?

Couldn't theoretically two people wear two headsets and play a couch co-op game?

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here