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Koyasha
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Reply #35 on: January 06, 2016, 10:39:22 PM

The question I still have is whether or not the direction adds anything interesting when it comes to actually playing games. I'm sure it's a cool experience and novelty, but at the end of the day I don't know that this is really how I want to be playing games all the time.
I think VR would add to playing games even if nobody designs anything specifically to take advantage of it.  Just seeing the game as full-view instead of on a screen is a pretty big jump in immersion I think.  I'd like it for that alone.  I'm not sure what games could do to take advantage of VR specifically beyond that, but that on its own would be quite a bit.

And I really hope it's not just first-person games that take advantage of it.  Yes, it helps a lot for first-person immersion, but it'd also be cool in third person games.  I don't mind having a floating point of view and I do really like third person view games like Mass Effect or playing Elder Scrolls games in 3rd person where I can see my character, etc.

If I can afford one, once they're out, there are reviews about which seems highest quality and such, and it doesn't require more than my computer has, I'll definitely get one.

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Reply #36 on: January 07, 2016, 03:18:38 AM

Personally I'd love to try Minecraft in full VR. Heavily modded MC is already very immersive for me, and I suspect that in VR it'd be a pretty epic experience. And my current PC should have the oomph for it, although a video card update might be needed at some point.

But at nearly 1000 euros including controllers and the ridiculously overpriced postage they've gone with to Europe? Haha, that's so far away from my upper estimates of what I would have considered paying that I've now just completely dismissed the idea for the forseeable future.

I think anyone who's been developing games for VR over the last few years is probably crying into their cornflakes this morning and polishing up their CV.

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jth
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Reply #37 on: January 07, 2016, 05:57:15 AM

In theory I'm interested in these, at least once the prices go down, but as far as I know none of the first generation consumer kits will have diopter adjustments so sadly they are not very usable for me.

Last year I had cataract surgery for both eyes (at age 42, unlucky genetics) and have monofocal IOL's, so my eyes have fixed focus. Somehow I don't think these sets will really work with progressive lenses, so I would have to get custom glasses just for this, no thanks.
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Reply #38 on: January 07, 2016, 07:30:34 AM

I think VR would add to playing games even if nobody designs anything specifically to take advantage of it.  Just seeing the game as full-view instead of on a screen is a pretty big jump in immersion I think.  I'd like it for that alone.  I'm not sure what games could do to take advantage of VR specifically beyond that, but that on its own would be quite a bit.

The problem is that games have to specifically take advantage of VR for them to work.  If you put just any old FPS into OR you will get motion sickness, guaranteed (especially if you strafe, that will really fuck your stomach over).  There's a difference between a "full view screen" and "2 screens that move with your head and are only a few inches from your eyes" in how that will work with most games.  You are really going to need games that are designed around the VR experience to keep the experience smooth.
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Reply #39 on: January 07, 2016, 09:21:04 AM

Personally I'd love to try Minecraft in full VR. Heavily modded MC is already very immersive for me, and I suspect that in VR it'd be a pretty epic experience. And my current PC should have the oomph for it, although a video card update might be needed at some point.
Damn you.

edit: quick reading shows the java version (and all our lovely mods) will not be officially supported. There is a mod, but I wonder if MS will knock it down, given their recent shenanigans with Win10 pushing/nagware/stealth install and Office registration (bye bye OEM/per machine licensing).
« Last Edit: January 07, 2016, 09:38:53 AM by Sky »

Jeff Kelly
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Reply #40 on: January 07, 2016, 09:42:59 AM

You need a PC with a recent broad well or skylake core i5 and a 980 TI on top of that. Min spec is a rig that can drive two 1080p screens at 90 Hz.

So we're at 2,500 to 3,000 for the full VR experience if you have to start from scratch.

The Wii had the advantage that it was cheap and so people could try out the novelty risk free. No one except the extreme hard core will spend 3,000 on something that still has no clear cut use case or benefit
Jeff Kelly
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Reply #41 on: January 07, 2016, 09:44:51 AM

Pricing it at that price point basically killed any momentum Oculus VR had. 300 yes, 700 no fucking chance
MisterNoisy
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Reply #42 on: January 07, 2016, 10:09:02 AM

You need a PC with a recent broad well or skylake core i5 and a 980 TI on top of that. Min spec is a rig that can drive two 1080p screens at 90 Hz.

So we're at 2,500 to 3,000 for the full VR experience if you have to start from scratch.

The Wii had the advantage that it was cheap and so people could try out the novelty risk free. No one except the extreme hard core will spend 3,000 on something that still has no clear cut use case or benefit

I think I've read that a GTX970 or equivalent is the base spec - basically anything that can push 9K or better on FireStrike, which is still a pretty pricey box.  For me, I'd rather spend the $600 asking on a new Pascal/Polaris GPU when those come out, though.

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Reply #43 on: January 07, 2016, 10:31:24 AM

Damn you.

edit: quick reading shows the java version (and all our lovely mods) will not be officially supported. There is a mod, but I wonder if MS will knock it down, given their recent shenanigans with Win10 pushing/nagware/stealth install and Office registration (bye bye OEM/per machine licensing).

I dunno, MS have taken pains to not interfere with the existing modding scene and they seem to be very aware of how easily they could fuck it up. The Win10 version is, so far, no more than a curiosity and only of appeal to the non-modded players. Time will only tell if modding the Win10 version ever becomes possible, but without mods it'll never be very popular.

Either way I think VR modded Minecraft will become a thing, unless VR dies on its feet this year because of the costs.

If they were launching the Oculus Rift in a time of global economic prosperity when the idea of more luxury entertainment goods wasn't such a pipe dream for most of us I could understand it. But wages are stagnating, productivity is collapsing, many national economies look set for another round of severe crashes as a result of austerity and unregulated financial speculation, etc. It's a really, really bad time to put huge price tags on consumer goods.

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Reply #44 on: January 07, 2016, 12:18:13 PM

Valve/HTC Vive instead? It will let you see people and things in the room behind the screen if you so prefer. Wish we knew the price of that. Coming in April.

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Reply #45 on: January 07, 2016, 12:38:28 PM

I think I've read that a GTX970 or equivalent is the base spec - basically anything that can push 9K or better on FireStrike, which is still a pretty pricey box.  For me, I'd rather spend the $600 asking on a new Pascal/Polaris GPU when those come out, though.

I'm going by the system requirements for the HTC/Valve Vive. Firstly because Valve so far has been pretty open about their product and more importantly because its the only VR headset so far where people don't complain about motion sickness or headaches. Even people that got sick using the Oculus or Morpheus don't seem to get those issues with the Vive.

Valve says that the minimum specs are a PC that can drive two 1080p displays at 90 Hz each. They also claim that the 90 Hz refresh rate per display is a huge factor why people don't get motion sickness or headaches. I tend to believe them because they actually address the complaint in their marketing/communication and don't just handwave it away like Oculus does with its "it will be fixed in the finished product" approach to issues people had with the dev kits.

Right now this pretty much requires a 980 TI or a Titan and probably more than 4 GB of VRAM. A 970 is pretty much only good for one 1080p display and for 1440p and over a 980 is the recommended card. It also pretty much requires a processor that can handle the memory bandwidth necessary to shovel all of that texture data to the card. So we're looking at a rig with DDR4 memory capabilities which pretty much only leaves haswell and skylake processors.

So a Core i5 Haswell or Skylake processor with DDR 4 memory and a Geforce 980 TI which will set you back another 1,500 to 2,000 dollars depending on what you have and can reuse.
Jeff Kelly
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Reply #46 on: January 07, 2016, 12:45:05 PM

Given that I own a 3 year old Macbook Pro as my only computer I'd have to pay about $3,000 for the privilege of enjoying VR. I'd also need a new apartment. My apartment is too small to use a kinect and given how all of the VR suppliers promoted their products - basically putting people in a big empty room and making sure they don't trip over and hurt themselves - means that most people won't have both the money and the space to use VR.

A price I'd probably not be willing to pay even if I'd knew what games were planned and knew they were awesome.
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Reply #47 on: January 07, 2016, 01:56:01 PM

Pricing it at that price point basically killed any momentum Oculus VR had. 300 yes, 700 no fucking chance
Except that they're selling like hotcakes and I imagine the devs will want the brakes on somewhat on it as it's still early in the game and they want to ease production issues and temper mainstream reaction to the paucity of release title compatibility. Let the rich kids play with the toys and in a few years the rest of us reap the rewards, same as every technology push. I don't think the pricing is at all out of line for this, in fact it would be silly to charge less and leave the money on the table.

Jeff Kelly
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Reply #48 on: January 07, 2016, 03:01:46 PM

We're living in a world where people pay $10,000 for virtual spaceships in a game that isn't finished. I'm not saying they won't sell any of them. Given that limited preorders are a marketing staple though to make it seem as if more people are interested than there might be I won't necessarily agree that they're selling like hot cakes though.

We don't know how many preorders were actually available and how many people really paid the $599 for it. The hard core crowd will buy it of course and the crowd that has too much money.

VR won't be a success though if you only get they early adopter and enthusiast crowd even if it's 100,000 people. I'm not optimistic though that the general public will fork over $599 for what is essentially a novelty you need a beefed up PC for. As I said I could see it taking off for $399, even given the hardware specs necessary, not for $599 though.

Even many enthusiasts were being cautious about VR and were waiting for a price announcement before they'd make a decision. Charging people the equivalent of a 980TI though might make this a tough sell without a killer app. VR continues to be a solution looking for a problem and the current price doesn't help at all.
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Reply #49 on: January 07, 2016, 03:37:24 PM

Oops, forgot who I was replying to for a second there.

Jeff Kelly
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Reply #50 on: January 07, 2016, 03:56:35 PM

What do you mean?
Jeff Kelly
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Reply #51 on: January 07, 2016, 05:02:39 PM

OK maybe the early adopter crowd is profitable enough for Oculus to milk them. After all you usually harge the highest price you can get away with.

What's the endgame though?

There's no killer use case for gaming. There's no killer use case for entertainment. The closed off opaque nature makes those VR headsets unsuitable for professional augmented reality application (Hololens would be a better fit for that). All we have is a set of highly curated and manufactured by marketing experiences and a lot of promises of "awesome content".

None of the players can subsidize the hardware because they don't have a platform only a peripheral and so they can't offset initial losses on HW with licensing fees or SW sales. None of the players have a platform and so they can't even control what type of SW gets created and for what system making it so they are entirely dependent on developer goodwill for a system that has no customer base.

On top of that we're on the brink of yet another format war with three companies vying for the same set of customers.

So what's the plan? Build it and wait if or when developers figure it out? That's a large gamble for the amount of money riding on the success of those systems.
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Reply #52 on: January 07, 2016, 05:19:06 PM

Training simulations.

Edit: headed to CES tomorrow, so I'll poke around and see if I can try one of the retail units - not likely! Line was huge last year.

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Torinak
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Reply #53 on: January 07, 2016, 07:25:47 PM

Training simulations.

Edit: headed to CES tomorrow, so I'll poke around and see if I can try one of the retail units - not likely! Line was huge last year.

Training for what? It has to be a profession where having a bulky opaque box on your head doesn't interfere with the immersion, where you don't need any peripheral vision, and where you don't have any controls or interfaces you can't manipulate by touch only. I've done work on immersive simulators before, and everyone dreamed about head-mounted displays but couldn't make use of them for these reasons (plus the hardware power really wasn't there back then). Piloting, driving, and telepresence surgery were all right out. Missing or incorrect kinesthetic cues make a lot of "obvious" applications not work in practice, as the VR research from the late 90's demonstrated.

Based on what I've read so far, I think this will be almost as successful as Google Glass--a big splash among the more-money-than-sense Silicon Valley crowd, maybe one or two demos that are sexy enough to get the blogosphere excited, and then a big thud shortly thereafter.

If it were a third the price, and every existing game "just worked" with it, then maybe.
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Reply #54 on: January 07, 2016, 10:55:37 PM

I don't think it's even the price as much as the compatibility. The main reason I didn't use 3d Vision all the time was compatibility. It was awesome when it worked, but it didn't work a lot (mostly UI elements or devs who cheat, 3d showed a ton of visual hacks and shortcuts).

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Reply #55 on: January 07, 2016, 11:18:08 PM

People talk about the price because that's all they can really talk about. That's because the pricing is the only concrete aspect of the product. Which should be a concern for Oculus.

No one actually knows what this thing is good for except maybe a vague feeling that this might be great. The general public still hasn't been able to experience the system first hand and no one has produced a compelling experience that makes people "get" VR.

The hope for an affordable price was what kept many people invested. In a "I don't really know what this'll be useful for but if its cheap enough I might by it" kind of sense.
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Reply #56 on: January 08, 2016, 01:16:53 AM

Cost is one thing...and it will be a problem for most people, undoubtedly.

Still, the thing that deflates my boner is the fact that only specifically designed games will work for it.  That makes it basically Kinect 3.0.  If I could plug it in and walk around Skyrim, load up a bit of GTA5 or play a round of (insert shooter name here), I would probably buy one sooner rather than later.  Could you imagine something like MSG5 for something like this?  Sounds like we are still many years away from this.

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Reply #57 on: January 08, 2016, 09:29:50 AM

There's no killer use case for entertainment.

Porn.

I'm not kidding, we're talking whole different ballgame levels.

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Reply #58 on: January 08, 2016, 09:46:36 AM

Porn.
Engadget of all places had a piece about this just before Christmas.

Some parts of the article engaged my gag reflex, I'm afraid, but Bunk seems to have nailed one major application.

(Oh, and obviously that link is NSFW.)
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Reply #59 on: January 08, 2016, 10:27:38 AM

Well, for those handful that are in the market for an Oculus and a new computer, Alienware has your back. They claim that the bundle their offering saves you $200 as opposed to buying the items separately.

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Reply #60 on: January 08, 2016, 10:43:07 AM

$1200 for an X51 with a GeForce 970. Yeah I'll pass on that.
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Reply #61 on: January 08, 2016, 11:14:22 AM

Just tell them you know it when you see it  awesome, for real

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Reply #62 on: January 08, 2016, 12:06:19 PM

VR has ONE killer implementation, but it will never be used because of the low tech savvy among its audience. Visualization and Pre-construction experience of spaces or experience of spaces you'll never have a chance to visit. That's about it.

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Reply #63 on: January 08, 2016, 01:25:35 PM

600 dollars is, quite frankly, a bit less than the initial price I was expecting. This phone in my pocket right now cost nearly that much, and it's not even top of the line.

VR might be the must have device for sim enthusiasts (no, not the Sims, dammit). You either get into flght and space and, I guess, trucking and rail sims in a big way, or you don't, but if you do the ability to look around your virtual cockpit is an orgasmic experience (especially if it's a porn sim, now that I think about it).

Thing is, I'm not certain there are enough of us around to make this particular product a success, and I won't be surprised if it goes the way of 3D after all.
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Reply #64 on: January 08, 2016, 02:29:31 PM

The problems with VR in a sim experience are multiple.

1) Your controls aren't simulated, because you have no tactile feedback

2) If you build a cockpit for that tactile feedback:
  a) you don't need the damn goggles
  b) if you use the goggles you don't get the hand-eye coordination because your hands don't show-up in VR.

3) Seated applications are the good sim applications. Walking/ running/ lifting/ whatever physical interactions you might have are all gamified so it's not a real sim of an experience.

And that's just off the top of my head with no research.

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Reply #65 on: January 08, 2016, 03:50:36 PM

Just like everything else tech related, I'll let the "early adopters" aka alpha/beta testers take the plunge first and wait for the price to drop by at least half before I even think about buying.

I'll pre order you SWTOR if you let me put my lightsaber in your sarlaac cave
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Reply #66 on: January 08, 2016, 03:55:27 PM

Attempts at VR without tactile feedback AND complete sensory immersion are just baby steps on a very long fucking road. It's tech wankery.

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Reply #67 on: January 08, 2016, 05:37:00 PM

Attempts at VR without tactile feedback AND complete sensory immersion are just baby steps on a very long fucking road. It's tech wankery.

I want to see the military applications for this tech.

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Reply #68 on: January 08, 2016, 08:53:23 PM

Almost fucking zero, honestly. Drone piloting maybe?

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Reply #69 on: January 08, 2016, 11:58:51 PM

Almost fucking zero, honestly. Drone piloting maybe?

Yeah, in terms of practical applications it's pretty hard to sell it since it's more restrictive than a screen.  You're blocking out more information (the surroundings of the operator) than you're generating (depth, maybe, for some cases).  It's more a game thing than a practical tool, the only thing it brings to the table is a sense of virtual presence which doesn't have a massive amount of utility outside maybe real estate / construction or travel industries.

Though there are a ton of research projects using the things at the University here.  Research Professors who can't be arsed to learn how send one of these so-called "text messages" are apparently all familiar with the Oculus Rift due to students using them in their masters theses.

Porn.

I'm not kidding, we're talking whole different ballgame levels.

Not to derail things, but how is that possible, technically?  I didn't think there was a way for live action footage of any kind to translate in to a VR display without massively disorienting the viewer.  You need to couple a 360 lens with a binocular camera, somehow recording every possible viewing angle for every possible eye position.

I mean, unless we're just talking about CG boobs, which I'm sure are on the way (if they're not already here) but I'm not sure have the same market force behind them as the old format wars.
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