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What do you really think of virtual reality?

By midian182 ยท 68 replies
Apr 15, 2016
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  1. You can guarantee that almost every day will bring at least a couple of news stories involving virtual reality in one form or another. Just today, Huawei became the latest in a very long line of organizations to unveil a VR-related product. But despite the huge number of companies claiming that virtual reality is the future, not every consumer loves the technology as much as Mark Zuckerberg and Luckey Palmer.

    Despite being a strong advocate of VR, I accept that it still has plenty of issues to overcome: PC-powered headsets are prohibitively expensive, there still isn’t a huge amount of content available, and using them for long periods can cause problems for many people.

    For this weekend open forum, we want to know what you really think of VR. Do you love it or hate it? Will it inevitably become integrated into our everyday lives, or will it end up a fad that falls out of fashion? Does VR need time to evolve before more people adopt it, or will it forever remain a bit of a niche market? Whatever your thoughts, let us know.

    Permalink to story.

  2. m4a4

    m4a4 TS Evangelist Posts: 1,458   +1,034

    Referring to the Vive (with the motion controls), it's the best arcade style action I've had the pleasure of using so far.

    As for VR in general, it's good for interactive/demo scenes. But because of the limited movement, I don't see it being good for full fledged games or anything more than casual.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2016
    NimbusTLD likes this.
  3. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,376   +72

    A lot of you should believe what I say. I could go see it at chuck e cheese's in darien, il where I live where they have the oculus rift, but I haven't gone to that crowded place for quite a while. Didn't see it, but it would be the acid test for my newly repaired eyes. Probably beautiful.
  4. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 5,384   +3,774

    You know, like any other technology, it will most certainly have it's own nitch ... but being the know all and cure all is not very likely. Of course, we'll just have to see how it develops and if the software companies are foolish enough to forgo all other things until this one has run it's course .....
  5. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 2,709   +2,509

    To the average person virtual reality is useless, expensive and impractical nonsense just like 3D TV. The consumer electronics biz is getting desperate now that tablets are old hat. People aren't buying new eco-waste as as quickly as they used to because tech has essentially plateaued. 4K? Only a big deal to obsessive hard-core gamers. If you've bought a flatscreen in the past five years you won't need a new one till the old one breaks. This isn't to say VR can't have its uses..their just not in the consumer realm. Industry, education, science - that's where it belongs until it's no more cumbersome than a pair of sunglasses or a walk to your local VR arcade. In fact, I could actually see VR making arcades a hot ticket again. Other than movie theaters there really aren't any good hangouts for the teens and and families these days. I think a modern, revamped arcade could be extremely popular. Too bad the Samsungs and HTCs of the world are too myopic to realize this. If these kinds of VR venues actually exist outside of amusement parks or Vegas, I haven't heard about them.
  6. treetops

    treetops TS Evangelist Posts: 2,558   +548

    I'd love to go to a vr arcade, I tried vr in the mid 90s at six flags, thought was pretty amazing for it's time. They had this thing where you walked in place with a giant headset. As someone who lives in apartment my money could be spent on better things... I'm happy just to have a gaming rig that can max out 99% of games at 1080p.
  7. emmzo

    emmzo TS Addict Posts: 181   +75

    For some reason I`m not comfortable keeping a couple of radiating monitors few inches of my eyes, add to this the cumbersome gear, nausea and headaches after less than 2 hours of use. It`s sure a cool experience the first time you use it, the novelty you know, but so was 3D. It gets old really fast and I doubt clever software implementations can ever make a huge difference. I bet in a short while, to the average consumer the only reason to buy this for Christmas will be porn.
    trgz and BSim500 like this.
  8. Zoner1501

    Zoner1501 TS Enthusiast Posts: 55   +18

    To be fair porn has driven the success of media such as VHS , DVDs, Bluray, Internet; and after trying it out you'll never go back to watching on a monitor again.
  9. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 3,991   +3,479

    Maybe if you're allowed to be stark naked with a bucket over your head for long periods of time with no one to interrupt. Fun fact, You talk louder when you can't hear your own voice. You can't hear what you're doing with a VR helmet on so I expect that people will naturally make allot of noise. Combine that with no awareness of what's around you and you have a recipe for another American Pie movie. VR porn is really only going to appeal to single guys who live alone.
    Raoul Duke, BSim500 and mrtraver like this.
  10. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,364   +5,001

    In its current state, worthless.
    BSim500 likes this.
  11. In short: No thanks. Don't need VR. I prefer real-life. Watching movies is about the most ficticious thing I do, and when it comes to games, well - I'm still stuck in those grand old days when a game took up just a few MB on the Harddrive. Wolfenstein for DOS is still my absolute favorite game, and still playable via DOSBox. Needless to say, I seldom play games. I think VR is one of those new worthless technologies that eventually will fade away again, just like 3D tv's and curved TV's have done here in my country. The general public simply don't need it.
    BSim500 likes this.
  12. BSim500

    BSim500 TS Evangelist Posts: 607   +1,222

    What do I think? Exactly the same as what I thought of it when we had the same question two weeks ago. It worked OK when I tested it, but there's no way I could play for anywhere near the length of time I could a regular monitor. It wasn't motion sickness but "Vergence-Accommodation Conflict" and heat build up around the forehead / eyes that made it uncomfortable and unnatural for me as explained in link. And the "games" on it weren't "more fun" than 2D, just different.

    I don't think it'll die out. I do think advocates who are experiencing that "novelty honeymoon phase" along with the industry are 'talking up' general interest in it for the sake of hype / out of fear of it "fizzling". Many gamers who prefer to flop out on the sofa with a controller (because they find even sitting at a desk with a keyb & mouse is 'too tiring' ) are hardly going to start running 10-20 miles a day on a VR treadmill in a multi-hour FPS battle. Again, there are some valid exercise / keep-fit applications, but just like the Wii Balance Board, people are wildly talking up general interest of "an entire nation of keep fit enthusiast gamers" beyond what will be used 6 months after purchase.

    You can also tell who lives alone by how they're promoting it. "OMG - the new VR will be a true 6-axis mobility living room experience". Funny thing is, when you have a wife and kids or share a house with several other people, you soon realise why laptops and tablets exploded in popularity vs a single household desktop in the first place (and why almost half of all kids have a games console in the bedroom, not the living room) - when other people use the living room TV for watching TV on during peak evening hours, the ability to take a device into another room trumps everything. Some people who stick a high-end PC in the living room, attach an expensive alternative display device (VR headset) may well think "the future" is to go back to the old days of the 90's in forming "living room breadline queues" for chaining a device to one single room then allowing one person to use it at a time, but a lot of us know better. Many people have desktop PC's in smaller rooms, bedrooms, etc, and full room experience is going to be limited by the reality that households usually work in different ways to the BS glossy sales brochures which portray a small convention centre sized living room (usually in white) devoid of all furniture and populated by just 1-2 models with overly cheesy smiles...

    Same goes for "360 degree movies / porn", etc. I can't quite see how being able to look at the cameraman / boom operator / producer or see the edges of the set, the railtrack / crane / platform / buggies the camera is mounted on, see the second / third cameras, lighting equipment, gaffer's equipment, set vehicle's / tents (outdoors), stunt coordinator, extra's, etc, is going to "add immersion" (because that's exactly what's "out of shot" behind the camera). It's almost like people pushing this stuff still don't understand how movies / TV shows are actually filmed. Likewise, sitting on your own in a fake movie theatre whilst your head heats up over 2hrs makes no sense vs buying a larger TV that other people can actually use at the same time without needing anything on their heads (half the reason 3D-TV flopped). There's generally a reason why most living rooms have more than one seat in front of the TV...
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2016
  13. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    What do I really think of VR? The same thing I thought when I bought a used IO Systems PC3d with no head-tracking and poor contrast LCD so fuzzy I couldn't play much other than Serious Sam 2nd encounter: It's amazing.

    Been a DK2 user since last year and it was pretty much what I expected. I knew just from spec how it would be in terms of visible pictures and providing life-size 3d graphics. It hasn't disappointed at all.

    Project Cars, Elite Dangerous, DCS World and a whole lot of other games and experiences.

    Adr1ft was initially a disappointment but the more I play it the more I appreciate the sense of floating through the space station ruin.

    A percentage who have never tried it or who have limited understanding of VR tend to be hostile towards it - I find that utterly stupid. Do those same people complain bitterly about IMAX movie theaters and say IMAX is a gimmick? VR provides a much more compelling experience than any VR theater so there is nothing to complain about.

    Pixel res: yes, a percentage who don't understand the history and development of VR tend to focus solely on pixels and field of view and declare first gen VR unusable.

    Meanwhile those of us who use it on a daily basis come to the conclusion that we don't want to return to gaming on a tiny 50 inch display with flat, compressed imagery.
  14. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    Thanks for speaking for everyone. The general public isn't stuck on Wolfenstein or DOS so your speaking for us all is bizarre. Also the sales of anything VR related including new kickstarter projects suggest your narrow perception of the gaming world is as out of date as your hardware.
    alabama man likes this.
  15. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    Used it then have you or is this just a random thought?
    alabama man likes this.
  16. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    Yes, but it's odd that the sales don't reflect your negative perception of VR. Look on youtube at the countless videos of people using it regularly... The comments about VR are shifting across forums from hostile to positive. Sure there are sites like this one that attract a largely hostile crowd but I've seen a massive shift of opinion on gamespot.com and Steam as people become more educated about the tech.

    Your perception of this tech doesn't tally in any way with sales. Head over to frontier forum (elite dangerous) and look through the VR section. Not one VR user there will go back to a triple monitor 4k setup for gaming. Or how about DCS World? Sitting in a cockpit with everything life-size and real is very significant.

    The fact that so many PC gamers became angry at CV1 price announcement proves your perception is wrong.

    The fact that sales of CV1 even at the higher than expected price prove that your perception is wrong.

    The problem with anti-VR rhetoric is that it never amounts to more than cliche arguments and misconceptions and has no interest in actual user opinions.

    You're basically dismissing a technology that outperforms the largest imax experience and fits on your head. VR is more compact, weighs less and is cheaper to run than an imax theater. Are you also telling people imax has limited use?

    VR would be better served in arcades? No. The appeal of HMD VR is that people can have a holodeck experience in their homes.
    alabama man likes this.
  17. alabama man

    alabama man TS Guru Posts: 563   +355

    Lot of people seem to complain not having room for this or not wanting to move. Real games ported to vr (elite, project cars, assetto corsa, subnautica....) don't require you to move at all, only the shovel ware games that are made to showcase possibilities of vr require you to move. If you want to be sure you don't need to move buy oculus. Also if you have limited space and not enough tv's this will actually help you, and if you have small kids you can play adult games before you put them to sleep.

    Ill buy vive from store when possible, don't trust delivery companies, tried to steal my stuff last time.
  18. gigantor21

    gigantor21 TS Maniac Posts: 172   +233

    Generally, I feel like VR's real potential will be seen in non-gaming applications like scientific research, medicine, porn, etc.

    As to my personal level of interest? I'll tell you when I actually get to try one of the damn headsets myself. I'm not buying any of them blind at those prices.
    Raoul Duke likes this.
  19. Cycloid Torus

    Cycloid Torus Stone age computing - click on the rock below.. Posts: 4,059   +1,186

    Unready as yet - that's me, not necessarily it. I think I will be a 'late adopter' - definitely behind the curve..
  20. Nobina

    Nobina TS Evangelist Posts: 1,936   +1,485

    I am not interested in it and I don't like trading in reality for the virtual one.
  21. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,281   +527

  22. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 11,364   +5,001

    I don't have to use one to know that when I sit down to relax, I don't want a box (I won't call it a brick this time) on my head. And just so we are clear relaxation is the goal when I play games. Its like jumping in a fire. You don't have to jump in a fire to know you won't like it. I don't like wearing **** on my head. I have to way too frequently as it is to get things done.

    And unlike some, I don't want to loose sight of what is happening around me. I'm always listening and watching. So from this perspective I will never like VR, but that doesn't mean it will not evolve and allow us to keep track of reality. At this point though I think the goal is to get as far away from reality as possible, and that does not interest me as all.

    Like I said in its current state it is worthless. And that was the question, "What I and everyone else thought".
  23. feathers632

    feathers632 TS Member Posts: 59   +14

    Yes, you fall into the high anxiety category... Have to see what's around you at all times. Well you're right...if you have anxiety issues you probably don't want anything setting you off.

    My experience of VR is that it can be incredibly relaxing depending on the application.

    Sounds like VR is indeed worthless to you.
  24. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,286

    I've tried it and I'm not as blown away by it as others. Don't get me wrong, I was impressed, and nauseated at the same time, but it's just a fad right now, an expensive one, but that's not to say it won't gather momentum and become more mainstream in the future. It'll definitely become better and cheaper in the long run and that'll be the time to blow money on it.
    Only early adopters and must haves need apply right now.
    BSim500 likes this.
  25. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,540   +918

    What's holding me back...

    -Having to wear the headset and the wires and controllers you have to deal with
    -Too many headsets (Rift, VIVE, Gear VR, PS VR, with more coming)
    -Could be a fad

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