EVE in Virtual Reality

EVE in Virtual Reality

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Ever wonder what it might be like to dogfight in the cockpit of an EVE fighter?

Part of the CCP corporate structure is the freedom to devote a percentage of time to work on side projects, and for a few dedicated developers the dream was to bring EVE to the Oculus Rift. For those unfamiliar, the Oculus Rift is a low cost VR helmet funded by Kickstarter.

Now before you start salivating over seeing a to-scale Titan in 3D or zooming around in your favorite EVE ships, it's not quite that. It's a pretty spartan set-up, with players dogfighting in fighters launched from super-carriers, but what it might lack in scope this little demo more than made up in heart.

EVR, the name of the demo, was just a joy to play and absolutely dripped of nostalgia for the yesteryear of games like X-Wing vs Tie Fighter and Wing Commander. I even got a heavy vibe of The Last Starfighter, for those of you old enough to remember that film.

At a press preview, we got the chance to demo the game before it was revealed to the rest of the FanFest conference. In EVR you're inhabiting the pilot in the first-person, but your head is being independently tracked instead of fixed forward. You can look around your cockpit, see your legs and flight panels, but more importantly is you can look out the canopy of the fighter to see your surroundings. Quite simply, you can be flying in one direction and looking in another just by twisting your head.

An enemy fighter might scream past you, and you can naturally follow it with your eyes, while aligning your fighter for the kill. Each fighter had two weapons, fixed forward lasers and homing missiles. The lasers did a lot of damage, but required the most precision to line-up. The missiles however were just more fun, as they also followed the head tracking. Pulling the missile trigger and then holding your view on an enemy fighter would lock-on to them regardless of their orientation to you, and then you could let them fly to track the target on their own.

Spiraling around in space, flying off at angle to a target that you're firing missiles at and also while desperately trying to boost and out maneuver enemy missiles was just an unbelievably fun and natural experience.

Currently, EVR is just a proof of concept. There are no plans for it, so far.

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I cannot wait to tell my grand children that all we had when I was a child was silly hand-helds with gimmicks of "touch screens." Then they'll call me old and laugh me out of the room while playing with their virtual reality rooms and holograms.

Can we, perhaps, have some screen shots of the game in question? I know I can just Google it but I think that article would benefit from some hyperlinks.

Here is the gameplay video

There has been a lot of talk about allowing the dustbunnies to pilot carrier fighters. Nothing may come of it but it is neat none the less.

Here is the trailer for EVR

synobal:
There has been a lot of talk about allowing the dustbunnies to pilot carrier fighters. Nothing may come of it but it is neat none the less.

There's been allot of different ideas about increasing interactivity between EVE pilots and dustbunnies, including the idea of allowing them to meet up in space stations.

Right now, it's impossible, because the two games run on separate graphics engines; Dust 514 uses the Unreal 3 engine, while EVE runs on a home made engine.

Now, one of CCP's future plans is to develop and launch a World of Darkness MMO. The idea is to build that game with the same engine that's being used to run EVE online. That's actually the reason why there exists such an intricate character creator for EVE, along with the ability to step out of the ship and into Captains quarters; they were testing the elements that they're using to build WoD. As they develop this aspect of the engine more, they will introduce communal areas in space stations, in the EVE universe, which will both serve as a way to enrich the EVE gameplay and provide testing ground, while they're working out the kinks and ensure a smoother WoD.

Unfortunately, Dust players will be left in the... well... dust, really. They won't be able to experience concepts like visiting said space stations or dogfighting in space unless CCP is willing to redo the entire game with their home brewed game engine or find out some sort of way that allows Dust players to port themselves into the EVE game and back, thus effectively jumping between game engines. Although, I don't know if Playstation 3(and 4?) will support the CCP graphics engine.

Oh man this sounds bloody amazing! I can only hope we see this same sort of tech in Star Citizen considering the amount of work that's been put into the cockpits of those spaceships.

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synobal:
There has been a lot of talk about allowing the dustbunnies to pilot carrier fighters. Nothing may come of it but it is neat none the less.

There's been allot of different ideas about increasing interactivity between EVE pilots and dustbunnies, including the idea of allowing them to meet up in space stations.

Right now, it's impossible, because the two games run on separate graphics engines; Dust 514 uses the Unreal 3 engine, while EVE runs on a home made engine.

Now, one of CCP's future plans is to develop and launch a World of Darkness MMO. The idea is to build that game with the same engine that's being used to run EVE online. That's actually the reason why there exists such an intricate character creator for EVE, along with the ability to step out of the ship and into Captains quarters; they were testing the elements that they're using to build WoD. As they develop this aspect of the engine more, they will introduce communal areas in space stations, in the EVE universe, which will both serve as a way to enrich the EVE gameplay and provide testing ground, while they're working out the kinks and ensure a smoother WoD.

Unfortunately, Dust players will be left in the... well... dust, really. They won't be able to experience concepts like visiting said space stations or dogfighting in space unless CCP is willing to redo the entire game with their home brewed game engine or find out some sort of way that allows Dust players to port themselves into the EVE game and back, thus effectively jumping between game engines. Although, I don't know if Playstation 3(and 4?) will support the CCP graphics engine.

Honestly I'd not be surprised if CCP eventually did abandon the unreal 3 engine. They've made a similar move with eve over the years when they changed engines. That said it is kinda all up in the air. That said CCP are nothing if not ambitious.

synobal:
Honestly I'd not be surprised if CCP eventually did abandon the unreal 3 engine. They've made a similar move with eve over the years when they changed engines. That said it is kinda all up in the air. That said CCP are nothing if not ambitious.

The main thing that can complicate that process is that we're taking about a graphics engine that was originally designed to be a space simulator, is now being modified to include tools that allow you to make a 3rd person RPG game and then modify it further, to allow you to make a smooth playing first person shooter.

Not saying that it's impossible, but man, that has to be one hellofa versatile engine. Still, if they'd be willing to go that far, and it proves to be an engine that's easy to use, they might actually end up with a pretty valuable product on their hands.

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synobal:
Honestly I'd not be surprised if CCP eventually did abandon the unreal 3 engine. They've made a similar move with eve over the years when they changed engines. That said it is kinda all up in the air. That said CCP are nothing if not ambitious.

The main thing that can complicate that process is that we're taking about a graphics engine that was originally designed to be a space simulator, is now being modified to include tools that allow you to make a 3rd person RPG game and then modify it further, to allow you to make a smooth playing first person shooter.

Not saying that it's impossible, but man, that has to be one hellofa versatile engine. Still, if they'd be willing to go that far, and it proves to be an engine that's easy to use, they might actually end up with a pretty valuable product on their hands.

Nothing says they can't use two different engines either. Aren't a lot of big games using Frostbite engine for their multiplayer now days while using a different engine for their single player, or vice a versa? Either way I imagine CCP has plans for Evr, even if it's just a 6 v 6 multiplayer game for a console or something.

That said it looks fantastic I can imagine an entire game being built around this tech demo, and that is what it is just a tech demo. I'd love to see something wing commander ish set in the eve universe with it's own story line and such.

synobal:
Nothing says they can't use two different engines either. Aren't a lot of big games using Frostbite engine for their multiplayer now days while using a different engine for their single player, or vice a versa?

Yes. That's why I imagine it is more likely that they'll look into finding some ways for you to port your Dust characters into an environment that's using the EVE engine, during space station visits.

Bottom line, is that it's still far away from happening. The few times I've spoken with Dust developers, they've either thrown out "No comments" or I ended up speaking with some lower rank QA person who had no idea if anything of this nature was being implemented.

I have always wanted a game where you could directly fly a single seat fighter in EVE, if they bring it to Dust it make rekindle my interest in it. Like anything in EVE it would take team work and coordination to pull of well, the small number of pilots you would have available would mean that you would have to deploy them where they could have the most effect too. Like one single Supercarrier would have all the human fighter pilots and you would have them protect your fleet from tacklers or hunt logistic ships and even hunt down any enemy human pilots. If they just flew around randomly it wouldn't achieve much, give them a mission and have them work together and they could have a massive impact.

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synobal:
Honestly I'd not be surprised if CCP eventually did abandon the unreal 3 engine. They've made a similar move with eve over the years when they changed engines. That said it is kinda all up in the air. That said CCP are nothing if not ambitious.

The main thing that can complicate that process is that we're taking about a graphics engine that was originally designed to be a space simulator, is now being modified to include tools that allow you to make a 3rd person RPG game and then modify it further, to allow you to make a smooth playing first person shooter.

Not saying that it's impossible, but man, that has to be one hellofa versatile engine. Still, if they'd be willing to go that far, and it proves to be an engine that's easy to use, they might actually end up with a pretty valuable product on their hands.

you know, there is a reason unreal engine 3 is the msot popular engine ever. you can use it for pretty much anything and still make it look decent. sure a homebrew engine may cater better to your needs, but will be much more expensive as well. frankly id love if eve would cotinue o focus on spaceships - the reason i actaully play the game more, and dusties can do whatever they want, i turned off the WIS on day 1 and never want to turn it on again.

synobal:

Nothing says they can't use two different engines either. Aren't a lot of big games using Frostbite engine for their multiplayer now days while using a different engine for their single player, or vice a versa? Either way I imagine CCP has plans for Evr, even if it's just a 6 v 6 multiplayer game for a console or something.

They are not using them at the same time by making items and characters interchangable and interactive though. hence why is there 0 itneraction between WIS and spaceships other than "you can see it", you cant interact two different engines that easily. you probably coudl find a way, but i think its faster and cheaper to recode whole eve on new engine.

Strazdas:
you know, there is a reason unreal engine 3 is the msot popular engine ever.

And who's arguing that it isn't? All I said is that Dust uses the Unreal engine and that may make it more difficult for CCP to introduce communal meeting places for the two gaming groups, since they use separate engines.

 

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