We are living in the future, ladies and gentlemen. It’s getting harder and harder to look at futuristic movies and say “Ah, that will never happen.” Think about it, our phones are ridiculously more powerful than computers were years ago, and also ridiculously smaller. Touch screens and 3D TVs have taken over, and as an industry which revolves around technology, gaming has felt the impact. Kinect, Move, and Wii-Motes are all results of an industry looking for new ways to interact. Virtual reality, though, is something we all strive for, but has yet to be accomplished. Well, I’m here to tell you that, if all the chatter is true, we are on the verge of a game changing product (pardon the pun).
If you are truly interested in the forefront of gaming tech and theory, the name John Carmack is one you should know. This man is literally a genius and is the father of Doom and Quake. Virtual reality, or VR for short for those of you who aren’t tech savvy, is a technology that allows us to perceive an environment as if it were a 3D world, with the help of a nice headset. There are plenty of headsets on the market, but they are either ridiculously expensive (like the $10k range) or they just can’t give VR the attention to detail it deserves. So if Carmack gets behind a project, there is a reason. In comes the Oculus Rift, the newest Virtual Reality headset. The original Kickstarter can be found here and ended up being a huge success; it is a good reminder of how amazing projects can thrive by being consumer funded.
For those of us who have been keeping our eyes out in the gaming scene, you may remember a lot of buzz around Mr. Carmack and a makeshift VR headset not too long ago. The video above shows Carmack and a reporter fiddling with what seems to be a pair of skiing goggles with some wires duct taped unto it. People had nothing but good things to say after they tried it though. I guess I should mention that the reason Carmack is involved in this is because the one game that is going to be Rift-ready at launch is Doom 3: BFG Edition. By now though, other games may have gotten the VR treatment for launch (like Hawken), so it will be exciting to see what they have in store.
I’m excited to see where this technology goes. The SDK that is included, if you pledged a certain amount of money to the Kickstarter mentioned above or pre-ordered, is supposed to be easy to get into. It’s also said to include “well-documented code, samples and tutorials”, and they say they are working on an out-of-the-box integration with engines like Unreal and Unity. The fact you are going to look down-right stupid while wearing it won’t be a problem for you, because I’m sure you will be too immersed to care.
If you’re interested in getting your hands on the Oculus Rift, you can pre-order one from its official site.
Leave your comments, concerns, and suggestions for future topics in the comment section below, and as always, thanks for reading, stay tuned, and stay sweet!