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VR unexpected results

Posted By: DM

VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 03:56 PM

So in another thread Coot asked this question:
Originally Posted by Coot
I can't imagine what it would be like in VR. Seems like some of those tense O2 management risks would feel quite suffocating. I've never tried a VR system. Do you all that use them get interesting dreams after playing in VR?


So I bought a VR headset recently, a Pimax 4K with a NOLO spatial tracking solution. After a few back & forths with faulty products (on the NOLO side), I eventually got VR on my rather old system, which was surprising in itself.

I bought it ostensibly to play Elite Dangerous, I was currently really enjoying that game and I had heard that it was sublime in VR. As I run Windows 7 Pro, the Pimax was the only solution available to me, and as I live in a country that allows consequence free returns on products I felt safe in trying it out. It is indeed sublime, the sense of volume and solidity of the cockpit is incredible, heavily augmented by the fact that as I use a hotas, and the ingame avatar also uses a hotas, the immersion was very real. I was IN that game, not "in" that game.

So one of the things you can do in Elite Dangerous is land on a planet/moon, and deploy a Surface Roving Vehicle (SRV). It's a neat little 8-wheeled vehicle that has a vaguely spider-like appearance and is good for romping off and doing a little "off-road" type activity. In 2D this is fun, but in 3D it was.... different. I drove up steep inclines, jumped over ledges, and descended insane slopes and what VR gave me was head spinning, stomach turning and heart racing experiences, I luckily don't get motion sickness so that's not what I'm describing, I'm describing a level of visceral enjoyment that I have not felt for a VERY long time in a video game, so I was quite pleased with that. It was pretty much more than I was hoping to get.

As good as Elite is in VR, you're essentially sitting in a 3D cockpit with a 2D view outside, as for the most part everything outside is too far away to be visualised in 3D. Aside from planet exploring of course, when the ground is within the human range for 3D visualisation. I thought about this and wondered how a racing sim would be, I'm still in a cockpit, but also everything I need to deal with is in a human 3D range, the road, other vehicles etc. I was not wrong, I bought Project Cars 2 and tried it out (using Steam's 2 hour/2 week return policy as a cushion against wasting my money). I was so impressed I bought a force feedback wheel to see if it improved again, it did. I bought a stick-shift to augment the wheel & pedals.

Now I'm not really a racing sim kind of guy, but I am always looking for a great game experience, and I feel this setup provides it. I'm not really much good at it, by by crikey it is enjoyable. And as luck would have it, I found out that Project Cars 2 is a particularly good example of a racing sim VR implementation, it is outstanding. I don't use the NOLO for this, just the headset, it has it's own gyroscopic 3DOF implementation that is perfect for cockpit-based gaming, I don't need to lean or wander around. (NOLO is the part of the package I bought that adds 6DOF to the Pimax's 3DOF. It tracks your headset and gives you two reasonable VR controllers, and is a single-basestation solution, so good for games that you can play 180 i.e. not 360 degrees around you.)


But there's a weird thing that happened also. I discovered something about myself: I can get freaked out by some VR experiences. I downloaded Valve's The Lab to play some free high-quality content, and one of the experiences is that you get to wander around a fantasy shop, like a wizard's apothecary or something. I set up my SteamVR playspace and was wandering around the shop, looking at things, picking them up, reading books, spinning globes etc. All nice & lovely.

Then this..... character comes into the shop that I was NOT expecting. A caricature of an Arabian/middle eastern/Mediterranean stall salesman, overly friendly and familiar, flattering, you know the thing. But it was his appearance, he was proportioned oddly, like a Pixar character or something, he was rather fat, his hands were too big, his head was too small, his lips and nose too big, small piggy darting eyes. On a 2D monitor I'd have no problem here, I've seen far worse. But in 3D I felt every hair on my body stand on end, he was in my space (or rather, I was in his) and was really pretty freaked out. I stayed on my side of the shop and watched him very carefully, not wanting to get close. As part of his script, he tried to give me something, coming closer & offering it out in his hand. I thought: if he comes for me I'm just going to fill my pants here. I stayed put, and eventually he placed it down, said some more stuff,and wandered back out of the shop.

After I was sure he wasn't coming back I went to the table where he put the article, it was some sort of lamp, or light source. I expect it was something I'd need to use at some point in a dark place. After I picked it up and turned around, where I was a few seconds ago was a large Jack-in-the-box. About a meter in size, with a large handle on the side. I thought: That was definitely not there just now, it has appeared. Then the handle started to turn around by itself.

I was still a little freaked out by the shopkeeper so I went "Nope. Nope. Nope" and took the headset off biggrin

So there you go. I did not know that I could be freaked out by VR, while still enjoying other aspects so much.
Posted By: MarkG

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 04:22 PM

Very cool. thumbsup

I tried VR once a couple of years ago, it belonged to my niece's husband. I forget the details but it was on a console and I was flying an X-wing fighter around Star Destroyers. I'm sure it's improved since (no screen door effect) but even then, I knew I'd never want to own something like this as it would become addictive (the nature of my personality). I distance myself from most current technology for this reason (just too easy for me to neglect my real-world with a virtual one), but I'd love to experience VR again in small doses on someone else's system, especially as it improves.

I can't imagine the porn implications VR will eventually have (with an added mechanical device, I assume). I'm keeping away from all of it, and envy those who have and enjoy it in moderation.
Posted By: F4UDash4

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 06:00 PM

I'm fully committed to VR. I've not played a non-VR flight sim in months and I fly BOS in VR a couple of hours per week minimum. I would love to try some driving games but I can't put any money into wheel/pedals right now (just replaced my home HVAC to the tune of six grand) so that will have to wait.
Posted By: Mark Aisthorpe

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 08:07 PM

Originally Posted by F4UDash4
I'm fully committed to VR. I've not played a non-VR flight sim in months and I fly BOS in VR a couple of hours per week minimum. I would love to try some driving games but I can't put any money into wheel/pedals right now (just replaced my home HVAC to the tune of six grand) so that will have to wait.




Do you have an XBox controller ? Euro Truck Sim and American Truck sim although better with a wheel are very playable with a pad and there great in VR.
Posted By: Crane Hunter

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 08:09 PM





Revolutionary for sure.

I'm definitely going to build my next gaming system with VR in mind, although at this point I think it'll still be another couple more years before its polished.

Posted By: F4UDash4

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 08:31 PM

Originally Posted by Mark Aisthorpe
Originally Posted by F4UDash4
I'm fully committed to VR. I've not played a non-VR flight sim in months and I fly BOS in VR a couple of hours per week minimum. I would love to try some driving games but I can't put any money into wheel/pedals right now (just replaced my home HVAC to the tune of six grand) so that will have to wait.




Do you have an XBox controller ? Euro Truck Sim and American Truck sim although better with a wheel are very playable with a pad and there great in VR.



I do. But I tried it with one racing sim and didn't care for it and truck driving sims don't peak my interest. But thanks!
Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/22/19 10:05 PM

My VR experience started with Elite as well. I’ll never forget the first time I lifted off from a station pad and rolled to align to the mail slot. My WHOLE WORLD rolled. That was when the immersion of VR hit me. My initial experience with the SRV was gut wrenching, as I got a bad case of motion sickness aka VR sickness. I did manage to acclimate myself, but I do need to close my eyes when the SRV goes tumbling down a hill or spins out.

I’ll also second IL-2 as a quality experience. The first time loaded up a flight, I looked down and had that same feeling I have looking down from a tall building or bridge. The experience is amazing! DCS was breathtaking as well. The feeling of being IN the cockpit was amazing! It’s much more cramped than sitting on a chair in front of a monitor!!

I’ve tried some of the VR movie shorts that are in the Oculus store, one in particular is called “The Crow” and it was really a different experience to be in the scene of a movie; even a Pixar-esque one like that. I almost felt like I had to sneak up on the characters so as not to disturb them.

Another excellent experience I’ve had is a game called “Transpose,” which is an escape room/puzzle type game game that has you on some futuristic structures and again, the environment is all around you.

If you’ve used TrackIR or an equivalent, you are familiar with the idea that almost every movement of your head is translated into camera movement. Real,life vision isn’t like that thoug, you can turn your head slightly and not have your entire field of view shift. VR is like that - very natural feeling.

As far as adverse effects, we’ll aside from the aforementioned queasiness and a little “Oculus face” from a prolonged session or two, I haven’t noticed much. I will say though that in Subnautica when I getting low on air and I’m rushing either to the surface or some safe haven I have caught myself holding my breath now and then though. I also got the pants scared off me a few nights ago as a rather large creature came out of nowhere and attacked. Thesethings didnt typically bother me in flat games, but VR seems to have suspended disbelief a little more thoroughly.
Posted By: Coot

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/23/19 03:42 AM

I would love to try VR for flight simming as it sounds pretty amazing. Has that done away with Track IR? I remember perusing their product page around 2004 around the time I bought FS2004. I was amazed at what I saw and when I was able to myself "lean outside" my biplane cockpit I was amazed. I'd be afraid of getting hooked on other games like fantasy games or what have you and getting too lost. I also can't imagine playing something like Resident Evil 7 in VR! I'm reluctant to play that game in regular mode as it is. I'm convinced this technology can be a doorway to negative things if entertaining the wrong kind of gaming software but that goes for movies and books too.
Posted By: DM

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/23/19 08:39 AM

Originally Posted by Coot
I would love to try VR for flight simming as it sounds pretty amazing. Has that done away with Track IR? I remember perusing their product page around 2004 around the time I bought FS2004. I was amazed at what I saw and when I was able to myself "lean outside" my biplane cockpit I was amazed. I'd be afraid of getting hooked on other games like fantasy games or what have you and getting too lost. I also can't imagine playing something like Resident Evil 7 in VR! I'm reluctant to play that game in regular mode as it is. I'm convinced this technology can be a doorway to negative things if entertaining the wrong kind of gaming software but that goes for movies and books too.


Well, speaking for myself, I packed away the NOLO part, so all I have is the headset part. This means I only use it for cockpit based games like racing or piloting. My regular 1st person games I still use monitor ( plus TrackIR where I can). I did briefly try Arma 3 in VR but it was very unsatisfactory. As was Skyrim VR. It gets consistently high scores but I found it to be less of a game, not more.
Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/23/19 01:06 PM

Originally Posted by Coot
I would love to try VR for flight simming as it sounds pretty amazing. Has that done away with Track IR? I remember perusing their product page around 2004 around the time I bought FS2004. I was amazed at what I saw and when I was able to myself "lean outside" my biplane cockpit I was amazed. I'd be afraid of getting hooked on other games like fantasy games or what have you and getting too lost. I also can't imagine playing something like Resident Evil 7 in VR! I'm reluctant to play that game in regular mode as it is. I'm convinced this technology can be a doorway to negative things if entertaining the wrong kind of gaming software but that goes for movies and books too.


By and large yes, my TrackIR is rarely used. I’ve done some non-VR simming only occasionally and only when I need to flip through a manual for training. That is a drawback to VR. With the headset on you can’t really pause and look up something in a manual without taking the headset off and frankly I can’t be arsed. There is a way in the Rift to putt a browser window in game, but you can’t interact with it. I can pause and do the the VR version of alt-tabbing (pulling up Oculus Home and using the browser) but it is cumbersome.

Other games I’ve spent an appreciable amount of time in are mainly puzzle games like Transpose, A Fisherman’s Tale (which I play roomscale so you walk around a bit, kinda cool I won’t lie), And Talos Principal; a strategy game or two - Final Assault (WWII RTS), Brass Tactics (RTS), and Robo Recall (arcade FPS I got for free). I would imagine an FPS player would get a lot out of VR, but I’m not really into that. The other game I’ve got a ton of time in is Subnautica which I’ve found to be fantastic. I’m also eagerly awaiting the next No Man’s Sky update, which has a VR implementation. That promises to be quite outstanding.
Posted By: Crane Hunter

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/23/19 08:47 PM



LOL.
Posted By: James McKenzie-Smith

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/24/19 09:26 PM

Originally Posted by JohnnyChemo
By and large yes, my TrackIR is rarely used. I’ve done some non-VR simming only occasionally and only when I need to flip through a manual for training. That is a drawback to VR. With the headset on you can’t really pause and look up something in a manual without taking the headset off and frankly I can’t be arsed. There is a way in the Rift to putt a browser window in game, but you can’t interact with it. I can pause and do the the VR version of alt-tabbing (pulling up Oculus Home and using the browser) but it is cumbersome.


Get yourself some voice powered game controller like VoiceBot on Steam. You just need half an hour or less to assign words/statements to key strokes, then play your sims with a microphone on, and you are good to go. It just feels so much better in-game to say something like "wingman, regroup", than hitting TAB, then the 1 key and then 2 key, or something like that.

To those automotively inclined...VR changes things a lot. Door to door racing actually feels like door to door racing. I can particularly recommend the deafening 1988 F1 mod for rFactor2, and the DTM DLC pack for Raceroom Racing Experience.
Posted By: K6_Scorpion

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/25/19 12:18 AM

If you're playing Elite Dangerous in VR, try out VoiceAttack... if you want to add a celebrity voice to that and map most of the commands at the same time, you can buy an HCS Voicepack(s) to crew one or multiple stations on your ship. Some of my favorites are Vasco (Brian Blessed), Eden (Idun Vik), Obsidian (Obsidian Ant)

I've been nearly exclusively gaming in VR since the release of the Oculus DK2 in July/2014...it's nearly ruined pancake gaming for me. DCS, IL2 Sturmovik, Assetto Corsa, Dirt Rally, Project Cars/PC2, Elite Dangerous. Love the open wheel/open cockpit racing and the DCS helicopters. IL2 has Flying Circus in early release right now and I love flying those old planes.
Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/25/19 11:21 AM

I agree - pancake gaming is hard to go back to!
I've got VA and a few different HCS voicepacks - those are musts IMHO, so much more immersive!
Posted By: PanzerMeyer

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/25/19 11:43 AM

I might get VR some day but I play plenty of games that can't use VR for obvious design reasons so I could never go exclusively VR.
Posted By: F4UDash4

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/27/19 10:12 AM

Originally Posted by James McKenzie-Smith
Originally Posted by JohnnyChemo
By and large yes, my TrackIR is rarely used. I’ve done some non-VR simming only occasionally and only when I need to flip through a manual for training. That is a drawback to VR. With the headset on you can’t really pause and look up something in a manual without taking the headset off and frankly I can’t be arsed. There is a way in the Rift to putt a browser window in game, but you can’t interact with it. I can pause and do the the VR version of alt-tabbing (pulling up Oculus Home and using the browser) but it is cumbersome.


Get yourself some voice powered game controller like VoiceBot on Steam. You just need half an hour or less to assign words/statements to key strokes, then play your sims with a microphone on, and you are good to go. It just feels so much better in-game to say something like "wingman, regroup", than hitting TAB, then the 1 key and then 2 key, or something like that.

To those automotively inclined...VR changes things a lot. Door to door racing actually feels like door to door racing. I can particularly recommend the deafening 1988 F1 mod for rFactor2, and the DTM DLC pack for Raceroom Racing Experience.



I just bought VoiceBot on sale at Steam, $4!

https://store.steampowered.com/app/374400/VoiceBot/
Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/28/19 12:04 AM

I had cause to jump into Subnautica in flat mode recently and I was struck by how...small... everything seemed. It was like watching a video of walking through your house on TV vs actually walking through your house.
Posted By: Alicatt

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/28/19 08:11 AM

Have any of you tried Adr1ft on VR? on normal 2D it's pretty breath taking I just wonder what it's like in VR



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gdNRR92_QdI
Posted By: JohnnyChemo

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/28/19 04:58 PM

Never tried it, but it’s only $5 on the Steam sale so I might just give it a shot.
Posted By: Mark Aisthorpe

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/29/19 12:26 AM

I played and enjoyed it for what it is. It an old game in VR terms now and came out before the Oculus touch controllers came out so its gamepad only but would definitely benefit from touch support, unfortunately I doubt that will ever happen.

It can be a bit frustrating at first due to the very limited oxygen supply, even more so than Subnuatica but that improves as the game progresses.
Its also quite short and a bit repetitive, you basically perform the same set of missions four times but its still fairly enjoyable.
Posted By: goon

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/29/19 10:23 AM

Originally Posted by F4UDash4
I would love to try some driving games


I bought a Rift in January and driving with it is a total revolution. I’ve had triple monitors and TrackIR for years, but the effect of depth perception and total immersion is an easy 2 -3 seconds a lap on any circuit. I can’t imagine doing it without a wheel and pedals though.
Posted By: Docjonel

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/29/19 06:23 PM

A lot of people complain about the lack of AAA games for VR.
The two games I play the most in VR are non-VR games I was playing long before I got my Rift last Christmas- iRacing and Battle of Stalingrad- Great Battles series.
Even though the resolution is less than my flat monitor, I will never play them again in 2D. In iRacing I am sitting in the car! I drove the Nurburgring at speed at night recently and it was a heart pounding white knuckle experience!
The IL-2 cockpits and planes look solid and convincingly life-like. I found my self constantly craning around in my seat checking my six and realized I was doing exactly what the WW2 pilots had to do.

Another cool and free experience is 1943 Berlin Blitz by the BBC. They took audio recorded by a BBC reporter during an actual raid on Berlin and combined it with surprisingly good graphics to give you a real feel for what one of those 8-9 hour missions were like. My favorite moment is on the return when the English coast is in sight and the pilot relaxes and starts singing. Cool stuff that really can't be experienced any other way.
Posted By: DM

Re: VR unexpected results - 06/29/19 06:34 PM

Originally Posted by Docjonel
A lot of people complain about the lack of AAA games for VR.


I suspect it will be a while before we see anything like a AAA game for VR natively. I suspect GTA would be kind of cool in VR (done properly - not the hacks we have so far which are a very poor experience IMO). Red Dead Redemption 2 would also lend itself well to VR, as everything in that game that you need to deal with is within human range for 3D (100 - 200 meters lets say).

I feel though that the golden app for VR has not yet been made, the one that will grab everyone and will set the gold standard, and will in retrospect be obvious. There are some games that... somewhat come close, your Beat Sabers, Elite Dangerous, Skyrim VR etc. (Although I did NOT like that last one, but I have to concede to overwhelming high reviews that it's just me.)
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