At the dawn of a new reality

Soon virtual reality technology will be as accessible as familiar to us Soup type of monitor or telephone. However, it will not be any unexpected revolution or fiction, which we have seen in the movies. At least not in the coming years. Try to understand how things will evolve VR technology, what problems to solve and some of the current trends is a greater chance of further life.

How come Soup h4> Helmets virtual reality actually exist for a long time. But the first time I was able to fulfill his childhood dream and immerse yourself in this reality, only in the 2007m year (expensive and heavy, several thousand $). And I must say - I was terribly disappointed. In fact it was just a stereo cinema where you sit in a big black room and you see a small screen somewhere in the dark.

Many VR Soup in the gaming industry, originally come from the expensive devices used in serious games. And in this area, you can quite often see, what "new products" can be expected in the future. So Oculus such innovation is actively used for the establishment of military trainers in the United States. A "software" for these simulators are often based on existing popular shooters.

Working in this direction for several years, I have also had the opportunity to visit the virtual reality room (Cave), try the gloves, all kinds of VR Soup and, of course, play with Augmented Reality. Working under these Soup mainly conducted on expensive engine Virtools and other outlandish software.

But I did not wrestle with how it's all you can use in game development, anything sensible out of this never happened. And finally just returned to geymdev. Also on the horizon loomed Unity (at that time purely for Mac) and it was an order of magnitude more interesting. Next iPhones and iPads took over the world, went on sale Kinect and other happy things. And in the 2012m finally came out on Kickstarter Oculus Rift. And then, I once again felt that "the future is already here".

Virtual reality is still very low h4> With a light hand of Russian businessmen emerged around some ozhiotazh Oculus. There are more attractions on this basis. At this wave, people often spend their money, waiting for something supernatural. But so far, alas, I feel in the shoes Lawnmower fails. And after a while the helmet goes on the shelf until better times.

Intelligent projects are still few, and current big games simply are not suitable for long-term use of helmets. For a comfortable game is not enough just to connect Oculus SDK. Much more important is the right to consider usability and gameplay. So let's face it - play is hardly what. And the most interesting projects are usually very small or are in the early stages of development.

But time does not stand still, and soon will be quite a few interesting projects. In general, I am also now developing games for the VR. And in order to be closer to this area, even at the time he moved to California and try to attend relevant activities obschatsya insiders etc. But while it is still experimental and direction in the development process there are many nuances and questions. Habitual solutions do not work here.

At the same konfeferentsiyah mostly show a frank trash. Yet few big and serious companies are doing anything on the VR market. A dull student crafts did not add some color to the picture. Though the press and indie romantic of them in a strange delight. I hope the world of virtual reality will not build it.

management problems still Reshin h4> There are many different attempts to create the same "killer device" for the VR, which again will solve all the problems with the management. But until now, except for Leap Motion, it looks more like a BDSM paraphernalia, which has a very small chance of becoming a mass product. Many of the devices certainly impressive (such as platform to move), but usually it's just a "toy" and pumping money from unscrupulous investors.

Actually, the most interesting virtual reality can be multiplayer projects. After all, this is what many dream - joint "adventure" in a sort of parallel world. But you need to first solve the existing problems with the management of nausea and quite common.

It is still expensive and cumbersome h4> At the moment, there are helmets that only show the image and track the position of the head, sometimes transmit sound (such as the Oculus Rift, Project Morpheus, Microsoft Project Neo, etc.) and a fully fixed "mobile" helmets.

The main advantage of the plug-helmets that you can play in the "big" game, and to control the use of a gamepad, or any other available devices. But with the inclusion of a VR mode FPS drops significantly and many of the games as a result of decent brakes (making it impossible to play a helmet). It often affects the quality of existing projects (gameplay easier to show than a pretty picture).

In addition, the connection of these helmets are not rarely have to spend time setting, in addition to still get another bale wires from the computer to the helmet (and in the case of camera Oculus DK2). Plus, here you can add a headset that dress on top of the helmet. Facilities in this not at all, but to develop quite amiss. And many of these questions necessarily solved in a future release.

But the main drawback connected helmets likely will remain a price. Not every user will be decided to spend several hundred dollars on a miracle. Discount for Russia, much less to be expected. And who knows how much time will pass before this decision will be a truly massive.

Coming soon just basically helmets will buy hardcore gamers (for major PC and console games). This will be a particular niche, but hardly something more (for consoles before helmets were of the same type of Eye-Trek). Another toy for gamers such as Kinect.

But there is hope h4> The smartphone market has grown quite rapidly and will continue to grow a decent pace even further. IPhones, iPads and Androyd have become more of a necessity than a luxury. That is why, mobile virtual reality helmets have the potential to become a mass product. And for most people, this will be enough.

Even at recent conferences, Samsung Gear company Oculus clearly demonstrated how higher priority device. After all, he Oculus is based on the same screen. And I must say - it looks fine, though, and requires long as Samsung Note.

One of my favorite development in this direction is the Cardboard. Helm, a couple of tens of dollars, can not give a good viewing angle and not as convenient. However, developing and small demonstrations and primary VR experience - is more than enough. Yes, and I do not mind if suddenly something scratched or broken. While many of its still not taken seriously.

Another significant moment - the number of downloads. In top on the page Oculus is an average of 20 000 units. While VR applications from Google Play without any problems gaining of 500,000 units. While full of games almost Andoid / iOS not. But it is only a matter of time. Recently, for example, it has been shown Temple Run for Samsung Gear. A demo Tuscany looks better and runs on Samsung Galaxy, rather than the Mac Air.

By the way, some of the best projects for mobile phones is now our compatriots, Fibrum. It's all right, and the graphics and control. A few days ago they appeared on the shelves Soup Re: Store. That is already a good tool for Oculus 40tr Avito or on eBay.

Generally, since this is a new trend, users experience the most important thing, the gameplay if you want. At this stage, it is more important than the graphics, as in the case with Wii. For example, often the game from the third person look more interesting than the first. And the range of projects is not limited to games. Educational and business applications, 360 videos and maybe even social services. All of this gives people a new and interesting experience, and hence will be in demand.

On step behind h4> But, unlike plug helmets, mobile is still not resolved the issue with full tracking. As in the Oculus Rift DK1 - tracked only turns heads, the position of the space is ignored. This leads to a rather strong restrictions in the design, since any unnecessary movement inevitably leads to nausea. But to solve this probelmy by external camera, in any case, it is not very convenient. And I hope will soon come up with a solution that is suitable for both types of helmets.

Things to management at the mobile helmets also are worse. All these external gamepads will not solve the problem. Ideally, in my opinion, now it is necessary to use the camera phone itself. Let it will not give an accurate tracking of hands, but it was flapping motion of the main track and definitely not a problem. And the situation of the people (or other helmets) nearby.

Third, no less important issue - it is overheating. After 10 minutes run some decent applications - smartphone overheats. It does not create discomfort for the head, but the benefit is not accurate. And the game is greatly limits.

I think an interesting option for hardcore players could become VR streaming. That is, if the same Steam has made it possible to use mobile helmets as a monitor (with data tracking and camera on a PC and the possibility of external tracking). For long-term use cell phone could be connected with a single cable to recharge. Then I decided to many questions and everyone would be happy.

A lot will be decided in the coming year h4> I do not know how much okozhus rights in their forecasts, and suggested ideas. However, what exactly can be said of virtual reality be very soon. Insiders predict that the above-described problems, solved in the next couple of years. I hope that it will be like that. Since then you can add here tactile communication, smells and other factors affecting the degree of immersion.

I am against togogo to this new world has been an alternative to the existing one. But interesting and useful it can be for sure. And while the market is still evolving and have not taken the big players - it's time to create something cool in this direction and get a first laurels (as it was with the AppStore). I hope that my own country over time there more developers who will be the heroes of virtual reality.



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