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VR headset

Riding the Rift photo
Riding the Rift

Watch me get queasy with an Oculus Rift!


Don't do a barrel roll!
Jun 29
// Jed Whitaker
[Update: Stream is over. Embedded the replay below in case you missed it.] So I broke down and got an Oculus Rift DK2 after finding one for a decent price on Craigslist. I've been toying around with my Rift for a few da...
cOculus Rift photo
cOculus Rift

Which VR headset will win? Porn has already decided


Porn, porn always changes
Jun 25
// Jed Whitaker
There is plenty of debate about which virtual reality headset will "win the war" and be the last one standing, but porn has already decided. Where porn goes so does technology, as can be seen in VHS vs. Betamax and Blu-ray v...
Headmaster photo
Headmaster

Headmaster is NOT a VR porn game for Morpheus


Though its lessons may cross over
Jun 22
// Steven Hansen
"Though its lessons may cross over," get it? Crossover, like the soccer move? (We kicked it and I scored, soccer game). Because Headmaster is (sort of) a weird soccer game and not about giving virtual blowjobs (you'll only g...

Summer Lesson photo
Summer Lesson

Summer Lesson looks like everything I want from virtual reality right now


S-sign me up?
Jun 17
// Josh Tolentino
OK, real talk: That headline makes me sound like a giant creeper because, in case you didn't know, Summer Lesson is a Sony Morpheus-based tech demo that involves you just sitting beside a girl, listening to her, an...

E3 2015 Preview: Pink eye and treadmills, VR is here

Jun 11 // Jed Whitaker
Tell me which of the following has you pumped for the future, as you surely are: ANTVR KIT - The All-IN-ONE Universal Virtual Reality Kit (ANTVR KIT), was independently researched and developed by ANTVR, launched on kickstarter, and raised over $260,000 -- exceeding its goal. The ANTVR headset features a 100 degree field of view, tracks head movements 360 degrees, provides vivid 3D images, and produces a non-distorted immersive virtual reality effect. It is compatible with PC/PS/XBOX and other platforms, as well as existing 3D/2D games and movies. TAW - TAW is a foldaway VR headset for smart phone which can bring you into the virtual world anytime while working with a smart phone of 4.5-6 inches. ANTVR Camera - ANTVR Camera is a 3D sports camera featuring 3D shooting with a 180 degree viewing angle and first-class image. It can be used with a VR headset. Guided Meditation VR - Experience an endless virtual vacation with Guided Meditation VR by Cubicle Ninjas. This virtual reality application provides powerful relaxation in exotic locations across the globe. Find your happy place as our "Relaxation Artificial Intelligence"walks through proven meditation and mindfulness techniques. Virtualizer - The Virtualizer is an advanced omnidirectional treadmill that allows users to walk, run, strafe, jump and crouch in virtual reality. Based on its third generation design, the Virtualizer is the first to offer 360 degree tangle-free rotation and a vertical free-motion ring for full freedom of movement in VR. Manus Data Glove - A data-glove for the common man. The Manus is an affordable data glove that tracks hand movement through various sensors integrated in to the glove. This data is then sent to our software -- which allows the user to play any game. With our open-source software you can program the Manus for other uses such a controlling drones, mobile games and more of your favourite devices. All of the above are real products that will be at E3 next week. Add these to Valve's Vive, Sony's Morpheus, and the Oculus Rift, and I assume you become The Lawnmower Man. Personally I'm looking forward to the Power Glove made for man ass. But for real, as cynical I've been about all this I'm very excited for E3, for the potential of VR, and to making as many informative (read: silly) videos I can from the show floor next week!
Yay eye cooties photo
The future is awesome?
As E3 approaches we here at Dtoid have been getting our inboxes filled with emails wanting us to check out new games and products, a large portion of which are virtual reality based and not just of the headset variety. O...

Oculus' Henry photo
Oculus' Henry

It's the '90s again! Henry the hedgehog ships with Oculus Rift


If it were claymation he'd be Clay Henry
Jun 03
// Steven Hansen
I've been saying Oculus needed a mascot since 2014. I was thinking an anime girl. But I guess a hedgehog could work, too. Everything is cyclical. Henry is a VR movie from Oculus Story Studio directed by Ramiro Lopez Dau, an ...
Newstoid #1 photo
The day is finally here!
The moment you've all been waiting for that has been months in the making, Newstoid is finally officially here! We have all the hot scoops, hot hosts, and side-splitting laughter you could ask for. Not to mention the hot bea...

Arizona Sunshine photo
Arizona Sunshine

Arizona Sunshine: The (Steam) VR revolution will, unsurprisingly, have zombies


Virtual reality zombie shooter
May 21
// Steven Hansen
I sometimes feel like I'm less on board with VR than most. It's a fun novelty to show a family member for 20 minutes, not something I'd like to be cocooned in for hours . Maybe that's why there's expectation of it doing gang...
Oculus photo
Oculus

Oculus has something to show us in June


Step into the Rift
May 20
// Vikki Blake
Oculus is inviting selected press to a special event in San Francisco on June 11. The plain invites merely bear the words "Step into the Rift" and an image of an Oculus Rift headset. What exactly the event will cover remains ...
Free 2 porn photo
Free 2 porn

Oculus won't be blocking virtual porn


Ecosystem as open as your Friday night
May 19
// Steven Hansen
While I still haven't gotten my own anime mascot, one more surefire thing happened: the Oculus Rift bore a lot of porn experiments. There were fake boobs to grab, real-life sex toys to hump in calibration to the anime girls g...
Oculus Rift photo
Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift expected to ship to consumers in early 2016


A 'first quarter window'
May 06
// Chris Carter
Have you been waiting patiently for an Oculus Rift? You'll get your chance to snag one early next year, it seems, as Oculus VR has just announced that the final consumer product will be ready in the first quarter of 2016. It ...
HoloLens demo photo
HoloLens demo

Microsoft HoloLens looks like the future


Make your games follow you!?
Apr 29
// Jed Whitaker
Holy shit! Call me a nerd, but this makes me excited for the future. Picture this: yours truly walking around the house naked while my videogame follows me -- a virtual pet here, a leaderboard of my friends scores there, a l...
Oculus Rift photo
Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift probably won't be on your face this year


Looks like you'll be be-rift of VR this winter
Apr 27
// Joe Parlock
It's a busy time for virtual reality at the moment: the HTC Vive gearing up for an end-of-year release, and Project Morpheus should be ready to go at the start of 2016. Surely this means the ancient Titan that is the Oculus R...
HTC Vive photo
HTC Vive

Devs can put their eyeballs inside the HTC Vive for free


Did no one see Sword Art Online? This won't end well
Apr 23
// Joe Parlock
Life is cruel sometimes. I’m almost blind in one eye and can’t see in 3D, so most 3D and virtual reality headsets don’t actually work for me. I’ve tried the Oculus Rift, and it was just like being sat ...

Narcosis explores the horrors of the deep ocean with intense VR gameplay

Apr 14 // Alessandro Fillari
[embed]283983:56360:0[/embed] Narcosis (PC)Developer: Honor Code, IncPublisher: Honor Code, Inc  Release: Fall 2015 Set at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean at an underwater research center, you play as an industrial diver who must fight for survival after a sudden and catastrophic accident leaves him stranded and alone. With the research center mostly destroyed and its crew killed, the lone survivor must retrace his steps and find a way to the surface. But with horrifying underwater predators roaming the surroundings, and a damaged diving suit with diminishing oxygen, the diver must keep a strong head -- or else nature or even his own wavering psychological state could overcome him. Referred to as a "slow-burn" experience by the creatives behind the game, this 'survivor-story' features a more atmospheric take on traditional horror titles, blending the show-don't-tell school of storytelling from Gone Home with the dread and somewhat other-worldly feel from Silent Hill. Humanity has only explored a small percentage of our planet's oceans, and with many aquatic environments and creatures left undiscovered, it's an incredibly interesting and captivating place to explore for a horror experience. On the surface it seems just like the film Gravity set underwater, and while that's not too far off, there's a strong focus on setting and interaction with the elements. We don't really get too many games set in the depths of the ocean, let alone a horror game taking place on the sea floor. And Narcosis definitely does a lot to play up the mystery and isolation to a very tense and anxious effect. Speaking with David Chen, the lead writer for Narcosis, he spoke at length about how they sought to convey their interpretation of survival horror. "We're kinda struggling to label the game, as it has many of the hallmarks of survival horror," said lead writer David Chen. "There are no zombies or a viral outbreak, it's really about seven or eight hours of this guy trapped at the bottom of the ocean. So we think it's a really, relatively unique premise for a game, as a lot of other titles have you saving the world, revenging your family, or bottling up some ancient evil -- but here, you're trapped alone in the dark on the bottom of the ocean." While underwater gameplay is almost notoriously awful in most games, Narcosis does the smart thing by keeping it simple. Movement is slow and hulking, which makes sense as you're wearing a heavy diving suit under large amounts of pressure from the ocean. Walking is your top-speed, but with the aid of charge pack, you can boost for short-distances. As you maneuver around the ocean floor and the ruins of the research center, you'll have to be mindful of your surroundings as there are many dangers ahead. With only your suit lights and some flares giving you clear vision, you'll often times find yourself in total darkness. Moreover, you'll have to monitor your oxygen and health levels, which can be restored by pickups found in the debris. By far the biggest threat is the presence of underwater predators. Resembling nightmarish squids and over-sized crabs, these creatures stalk for prey, and they see the diver as their next target. Some creatures are large in size, which may require you to evade their gaze. While you have a knife to defend yourself, attacking with it is slow and somewhat clunky -- which of course is by design, as the weight of the ocean and your suit makes movement slow. During one encounter, I came across a squid creature that nearly destroyed the diver's helmet with its powerful tentacles. Using a well-timed knife attack, I was able to strike it down as it charged at me. But of course, there's yet another issue to contend with. Given his perilous situation, and the fact that the diver only has his thoughts to keep him company, his psychological and emotional state can often become compromised. As you maneuver through the disturbing, alien landscape of the dark and claustrophobic ocean floor, and through the horrific aftermath of the destroyed research center, the diver's mental state will begin to decay, which gives rise to horrifying hallucinations. During my exploration of the research center, I had to trek through the remains of the station to look for clues to reach the surface -- all the while avoiding predators that have taken up residence, and finding the floating remains of the scientists and divers that died in the accident. With oxygen getting low, and finding many empty diving suits eerily standing up in hallways, as if they were looking at me, I finally came to a small room which housed four suits. Once I stepped in, I looked around for any clues, but I soon realized that the door had disappeared, and I was suddenly surrounded by diving suits, all staring back at me with their blank and empty helmets. As I kept turning, looking for a way out, I found that the room had suddenly given rise to a narrow hallway, with parallel rows of diving suits on each side. Each of them were facing each other in a somewhat ceremonial fashion, as if they were greeting me or welcoming me back home. Once I reached the end of the hallway, I finally found my destination: a small room housing computers with sensitive data. Once I turned around, the hallway and many diving suits weren't there; the lone survivor had just simply stepped into the room. Referred to as "Narcosis moments," there will be times when the diver's paranoia warps his perception, resulting in surreal moments that blur the line between reality and imagination. Bare in mind, I playing with the Oculus Rift during the demo, which made me so incredibly anxious. Moreover, this was all happening in real-time with no cutscenes or breaks. It was like witnessing some strange trip that wouldn't end. As I got more nervous, the sense of dread kicked up significantly, which made exploration all the more tense. While Narcosis is totally playable without the use of virtual reality, the developers found that the new technology helped to amplify a lot of the visual and atmospheric moments they created. "We describe it as a very understated use of VR, as in it's not flashy or flamboyant, but the core fiction of the game really lends itself to the use of VR as it accurately shows your limitations," said Chen while discussing their use of the tech. "It really lends itself to the sense of immersion, a sense of place, and the feeling of suspense." "It's a narrative-driven game, it's a story-based game, so we want to have appropriate emotional beats," Chen continued. "It's not intended to be a relentless freakout, but as the game has developed with VR, we discovered ways to try new things with it, as opposed to the more obvious 'aaaaaahhh' [motions jump-scare] moments. [...] While we definitely have some freaky stuff, we're trying to be more tasteful." Even during my fairly brief session with Narcosis, I was quite impressed with the VR. As opposed to relying on horror tropes and gimmicks, such as jump scares or stalking foes that appear all-knowing and invincible, this title lets the environments and its clever visual tricks do all the talking. I felt nervous during key sections, and knowing that only a few hits from predators could destroy my suit, simply hesitating and watching my oxygen meter sink was stressful. Set for release later this year, Narcosis is an intellectual and subdued take on survival horror. Which isn't all that common today, given that we're often using guns and other gadgets to overcome enemies. Going more for a general experience rather than a super 'gamey' affair, it seeks to show that the horrors of the deep ocean, and nature itself, are an uncaring and unwavering force that outmatch man on nearly every level. And there's certainly no greater foe than nature itself.
Narcosis preview photo
Deep deep down
Last year during Game Connection Europe, Steven had some special hands-on time with developer Honor Code, Inc's upcoming underwater survival horror title Narcosis. As a psychological-horror survival game, players find themsel...

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is a brilliant asymmetrical game

Mar 08 // Patrick Hancock
The player with the Oculus Rift can manipulate the bomb by rotating it or by choosing one of the many different sections on the bomb to interact with. There are many different possibly sections that could be on the bomb, but the simple ones consist of a series of wires or symbols, or even just one single button with some text on it. The game allows for players to mess up two times. After that, the bomb detonates. Bombs are randomly generated each time, so it's not feasible to memorize what to do in specific situations. Plus, the sections themselves change so it would take a ton of memorization. The player with the binder has a series of instructions that need clear communication as to what the bomb actually shows. For example, one section of the beginner bomb has a set of about six wires. However, depending on what colors those wires contain will affect which wire needs to be cut. The binder will say something along the lines of "If the section contains any yellow wires, cut the third wire." It becomes a constant back and forth between players in a race against the clock that is absolutely exhilarating. [embed]288752:57653:0[/embed] After beating the beginner bomb on day one of PAX, my partner and I decided we were up for the harder bomb on day two. We were not. The first obstacle on the second bomb brought us all three strikes. It was a more complicated series of steps that also included memorization. I was not prepared to keep notes while frantically communicating, but that's exactly what I had to do in order to win. Step five would say "If the number display is a four, press the position of the button you pressed in step two." What the hell did we press in step two? BZZZT-BOOM! Well, shit. Apparently there are even harder bombs. As I was perusing the binder of information, I saw steps that were entire pages long, something called the "Who's on First" section, and mazes. Mazes! Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes looks like it would be a perfect party game for just about anyone. This may be the first and only game ever to bring me back every single day of PAX!
Asymmetrical Oculus photo
Great use of the Oculus Rift
In Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes, a game originally developed at a game jam, one player wears the Oculus Rift and sees a bomb that needs to be defused but doesn't know how to defuse it. Their partner only has a binder...

Skyworld takes unique advantage of Valve's new virtual reality tech

Mar 06 // Alessandro Fillari
For our demo, the developers led me into a closed-off room which housed Valve's virtual reality hardware. Around the room were two cameras that tracked movement and set the boundaries of the VR environment by scanning the dimensions of the room. They then handed me the headset, which still looked as if it was in the prototype phase. Wires to the headset were numerous, which required a belt around my waist to hold all of them down. Honestly, it felt like I was wearing something from '90s cyberpunk like Ghost in the Shell or Johnny Mnemonic. It was weighty, but had a number of devices working at once. I actually almost tripped over one of the wires before our demo even started. But any apprehension I had for the device soon faded once I tried out the interface and witnessed it in action. With the headset on, I was in a home menu showing a number of games and applications. The controllers they gave me, which were also connected with wires, were two wand-like devices that were somewhat like a mix between the Sony Move and Wii Remote. Similar to the headset, they were in early form. Using trackpads on the controllers allowed me to cycle through options. And just for fun, pressing down the trackpad caused a balloon to inflate from the controller in the digital space, which was amusing. It felt intuitive, and surprisingly accurate. I could look around to see the menu system with its grey, almost minimalistic background, but the Valve engineer instructed me to look towards the floor. On the floor was a box, which represented the center of the space. Once I started walking forward outside the box, I made it a few steps before a grid popped up in front of me. This grid represented the physical wall that I was about to walk into, which the camera picked up and visualized within the VR space. It was pretty cool stuff, and I felt that I could've spent plenty of time exploring the home menu, but of course, they had a game to show. [embed]288675:57632:0[/embed] Last year, the developers of World of Diving showed off an impressive demonstration for their underwater-exploration sim. The use of the Oculus Rift was well designed and featured impressive depth and range. With the success and buzz they generated with that title, they attracted the attention of Valve, leading to a partnership. But the new VR technology they were presented meant having to design something a bit different. "When they asked to work together with us to make a demo for the GDC announcement, the first thing that came to mind was that we should do something like World of Diving," said creative director Richard Stitselaar. "But that title was designed around the first Oculus, and then the DK2 came along, we had to ramp it up to seventy-five frames per second, then Valve came along and said 'guys, it needs 90 frames per second.' So we had to do a lot of optimization on the game, and we figured we should use our knowledge with VR and apply it to a new game instead." Skyworld is totally different from World of Diving. Set on a floating island that houses a small civilization, you play as an omnipotent ruler that must wage war on the opposing side. As a quasi tabletop turn-based strategy title, players use both Steam controllers as wands in game to conjure up creatures and interact with the world. Over time, you'll build your defenses and expand your resources, which will allow you to send infantry and even dragons to attack your enemies. With the left controller, I was able to pull up a magic book, which housed unit info and spells to cast. Using the right controller allowed me to interact with the elements on the table. Whether picking up units to reposition them or interacting with blacksmiths or dragons, each controller had its own separate uses that complemented the other. "First we had this interaction model where you would look at something as this dot in the middle and then select it," said Stitselaar. "It feels natural to have something in your hand that could enhance the world itself." When you think of VR, you're probably thinking of something that's a bit action-y or fast-paced, and likely not a turn-based strategy title. But Skyworld definitely makes great use of the technology. I was able to view all aspects of the environment with clarity, as zooming simply meant stepping closer. Of course, I had to let go of some very basic certainties when playing with the demo. For instance, we all know that if there's an object in front of you, then you'll likely have to move if you want to get around it. I spent much of the demo walking around the 'table,' never thinking to actually walk up to whatever object I wanted. Eventually, the engineers from Valve and Vertigo Games instructed me that it was okay to walk through the table -- it wasn't real. After attacking enemy installations and moving my infantry around, my time with the demo ended. It was fairly brief, and I felt I only scratched the surface of what I could do. Valve's technology was easily the most impressive use of virtual reality I've seen in a long time, though. Moreover, Vertigo Games' work impressed. I was pleasantly surprised to experience a title that used VR in an original way. While the technology has a ways to go before it will get in the hands of consumers, I'm excited about what the future of VR holds.
Valve VR photo
Vertigo Games talks the future of VR
We got a big shock at the beginning of the week when Valve announced its partnership with HTC to produce a new virtual reality headset. We all knew the company had ambitions to enter the console market with Steam Machines, bu...

Valve in 2015 photo
Valve in 2015

Valve: Steam Link game-streaming device, controller, free Source 2, and VR in 2015


Announce ALL the things, just not Half-Life 3
Mar 03
// Jed Whitaker
Valve just announced a number of new products for 2015 along with some pricing details. (Leave it to Valve to reveal hardware with dates and pricing at the same time.) This year, the company will release: Steam Link, Steam Ma...
HTC Vive photo
HTC Vive

HTC Vive VR headset announced in partnership with Valve


Consumer version this year
Mar 01
// Jed Whitaker
HTC is partnering with Valve on a VR headset, revealed today as the Vive. The Vive will be "powered by Steam VR," which seems to be a software solution created by Valve for VR headsets. It is unclear at this time if Stea...
Theatre mode photo
Theatre mode

I can think of about one good use for Samsung's Gear VR


Get robbed on the train
Nov 06
// Steven Hansen
The Crescent Bay model of the Oculus Rift is pretty neat. Going immediately after to try out the Samsung Gear VR, which lacks the positional tracking and cool set of demos, at Games Connection Europe was weird.  There wa...
 photo

Harmonix to create a virtual reality experience for Samsung Gear VR


Visualizer for your face
Sep 05
// Dale North
Remember that new Samsung Gear VR that we told you about a few days ago? Harmonix sends word that they've signed on to create a new virtual reality experience for the device.  Harmonix Music VR is a music-listening dream...
 photo

Samsung announces Gear VR, powered by Oculus


Uses Galaxy Note 4's innards and screen
Sep 03
// Dale North
Stick a phone on your face for instant VR! We've heard that Samsung and Oculus were working together, and today we finally get to see what they've been working on. It's a virtual reality headset that uses the Galaxy Note 4, c...
World of Diving photo
World of Diving

World of Diving out now on Steam Early Access


Explore the depths with this procedurally generated underwater exploration game
Aug 26
// Alessandro Fillari
A few months ago, I got the chance to check out Vertigo Games' World of Diving. Set in a procedurally generated world, players can explore the depths of the ocean while interacting with aquatic life, uncovering lost treasure...
Half-Life 2 photo
Half-Life 2

How to reload your revolver in Half-Life 2 VR


I'm just glad it's a speedloader
Aug 23
// Brittany Vincent
Prepare for the future. As this Half-Life 2 video demonstrates, reload times in gaming may soon be based on skill instead of animation speed. In the video, reloading the revolver requires swinging the cylinder open, utilizin...
Samsung photo
Samsung

Here's the more expensive version of Google Cardboard from Samsung


Samsung's new VR headset will be a lot pricier than cardboard
Aug 14
// Brittany Vincent
Samsung has announced that it will be showing its rumored virtual reality headset, codenamed "Project Moonlight," at its upcoming product event show in early September where it is widely expected to also announce the Galaxy N...
Oculus Rift photo
Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift DK2 uses a Samsung smartphone screen as its display


This thing's got the biggest bezels I've ever seen!
Aug 01
// Brittany Vincent
During a teardown of the new Oculus Rift DK 2 unit, iFixit.com has found that the Oculus Rift uses a Samsung Galaxy Note 3 screen as its display unit. Speculation is that with Oculus trying to ship 45,000 units as well as ha...
Samsung photo
Samsung

Here's Samsung's bid at entering the VR market


It's all red
Jul 09
// Brittany Vincent
A new leaked image of Samsung's entry into the VR headset arena is making its rounds on the internet today. Known as Gear VR, it's poised to implement software co-developed by Rift creator Oculus, with screens and additional ...
South Park VR photo
South Park VR

Visit a 3D recreation of South Park with the Oculus Rift


Walk inside Big Gay Al
Jul 04
// Steven Hansen
Maybe Stick of Truth is more true to the series' 2D look, but this 3D, virtual recreation of the town of South Park is a pretty cool alternative. Characters keep their flat look and always orient themselves towards you ...
 photo

The Assembly announced for PS4 and Project Morpheus


New VR game
Jun 11
// Dale North
Good news: work on games for Sony's upcoming virtual reality headset, Project Morpheus, is fully underway. The newest announcement is The Assembly, developed by UK studio nDreams. It was written by Tom Jubert, the writer beh...
 photo

Alien Isolation gets Oculus VR support, Naughty Dog co-founder joins Oculus


Oculus starts strong
Jun 10
// Dale North
Oculus comes out with some big news early on the first day of E3. First, they've picked up Naughty Dog co-founder Jason Rubin. He will take over as Head of Worldwide Studios at Oculus VR, heading up first-...

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