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DAILY MANIFESTO

Oculus Rift's Virtual Reality Made My Head Feel Like A Spaceship

Posted on Friday, August 30 @ 21:30:41 Eastern by

Playing a game with an Oculus Rift Virtual Reality headset on is a lot like you'd expect, so I'm going to do my best to describe the experience as abstractly as I can. If you want a more straightforward and detailed summary of the experience, be sure to check out Jonathan Leack's hands-on from E3 (covering CCP's EVR space demo) or this triple-threat "heads-on" preview from the middle of August (which gave Nick Tan and others a shot at playing Hawken in virtual reality).

I also played Hawken, hence this slightly different shot at summarizing the experience in text-based word form. Without further delay, I'll just say that playing video games with an Oculus Rift is like…

  • staying home sick and robotripping through your favorite game.
  • snorkeling deep into a 3D world.
  • falling, all the time, everywhere and every direction.
  • inducing a headache to make a game "better".
  • the most disorienting way to enjoy video games.
  • distracting yourself with motion controls while still holding a regular controller.
  • looking into the back of your computer and discovering that all the fans have been replaced with portals to another universe.
  • strapping a brick to your face to ensure your posture never feels healthy.
  • freeing yourself from ever needing a second analog stick to look around.
  • jumping up and down without jumping, while sitting.
  • everything should be blurry because that's how it is in-game.
  • the video game world got 10 times smaller while your head has grown 10 times bigger.
  • the Virtual Boy never died and in fact has dominated video games for over 10 years.
  • going back to 1996, as the president's son, and running away from home to meet Mongoose12 at the mall.

In all seriousness, I did feel a little sick while playing, but not too much. Because the screens you're looking at are truly very small, there's a lack of spectacle to it (though that might have also just been the relatively dumbed-down Hawken demo I played). 100% honesty? I don't think I'll ever want to play with it again. Even if you got completely used to the effect, the sensation, and the weight you have to strap to your face, it's still not the most comfortable way to play a video game.

But not as uncomfortable as you'd be if someone walked in while you were enjoying the Oculus Rift sex game with headphones covering your ears and sexy virtual reality stuff obscuring your vision.

Related Games:   HAWKEN
Tags:   Oculus Rift, PAX


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