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Topic: Valve Index
Posts: 16908
Location: Cairns, Queensland

OK, you got my attention GabeN.
Posts: 12309
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
*Half Life 3 included

Posts: 19196
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
and these are probably the controllers coming with it.

Posts: 16909
Location: Cairns, Queensland

Yeh, I guess we know now why Knuckles have taken so long to be released.
Posts: 12383
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

What is it...
Posts: 2948
Location: Queensland

Some sort of Mixed reality head set I assume. Looks like there is a few camera/sensors on the front of it.
AGN Admin
Posts: 39775
Location: Other International

Is it AR or VR or still to be announced? I've had a look around but haven't found something that seems definitive
Posts: 1257
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
I wonder if this is why I started getting totally unexpected Oculus "ads" on facebook mobile today. I say "ads" because they appeared more like facebook System messages, and weren't the type of ad that is available to orsthe.

I've never bothered to look into VR - but may have a look at this!
Posts: 6187
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

I'm looking to dive into VR(sim racing but also keen on shooters) very shortly but trying to gauge whether to wait for something around the corner.
I would rather wait for high quality image and smooth refresh rate if that is soon(/now)?
otherwise will grab whatever is the best now.
Posts: 2187
Location: Canberra, Australian Capital Territory

That might be a part of it, I’m reasonably sure Oculus is overdue to release a new model of VR kit too.

If you’re planning on ‘diving in’ there’s nothing wrong with the current offerings, though there are some limitations to what you can expect (and I don’t anticipate these problems going away in the short term).
‘Screen door effect’ is present in all of the current VR offerings, which in combination with the fixed lens geometry basically make reading small text on games next to impossible.

Jump on an Oculus Rift CV2 or a HTC Vive when they’re on sale. I bought a Vive in an EOFY ebay deal last year for sub $700. I’m happy with what I got for the price.
Other than that, make sure your GPU is up to scratch. I’d Recommend at least a GTX 1070.

The bigger problem is that I’m yet to find that ‘killer app’ to sell VR as an experience for everyone.
I’ve got loads of VR tech demos and they’re fun for an hour or so, and I’ve also got a few conventional games which have APIs to integrate VR headsets (Dirt and Project Cars are both a blast in VR)

Without a larger customer base, VR is teetering on a ledge atm, and without more VR specific titles, it’s kinda stagnant at this minute
Posts: 18543
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
The Index has already sold out, less than a day after opening pre-orders. The full set costs $1000 USD ..

I already have a vive, so I am just going to get the controllers when they are available to Aus, the controllers are definitely the best controller interface (that isn't a haptic glove by an obscure company that may or may not be supported properly by developers).

Beat Saber is pretty damn awesome.

The screen door effect isn't actually a big 'presence' killer. Often it is when a sensory modality is too incongruent to what is being experienced in VR.

That and a person's natural level of empathy. Empathy towards the environment is a big predictor of level of immersion from virtual environments (empathy to environment is usually at a similar level of empathy to others, affect empathy .. not cognitive empathy or empathic concern).
Posts: 980
Location: Other International

Does this mean valve will be porting or creating VR games? cause this might turn the tide...
AGN Admin
Posts: 39782
Location: Other International

If they want to sell a lot of them presumably they can just say "hey so HL3 is now an Index exclusive".
AGN Admin
Posts: 39783
Location: Other International

I have heard Beat Sabre come up a few times & Toll finally reminded me to Google it. It looks cool but fkn hard, at least this one:

Posts: 19199
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Does this mean valve will be porting or creating VR games? cause this might turn the tide...

apparently they're working on 3 VR games and they've indicated that one will be released by the end of the year.
Posts: 1031
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

One of the key part of every VR headset is its display subsystem. The Valve Index is equipped with two LCD screens featuring a 1440x1600 resolution per eye (2880x3200 combined resolution), an up to 120 Hz refresh rate (as well as 144 Hz in overclocked mode), and an expanded field of view of around 130°. The screens are equipped with new optics featuring adjustable dual element canted lenses that ensure optical sharpness across the entire surface and enable users to look around using their eyes, not only the head. The optics also feature interpapillary distance and lens-eye distance adjustments to ensure the maximum viewing comfort.

I assume they mean 2880x1600. I expect that will be fixed soon.
Posts: 18544
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Trog, it may initially look pretty hard however because it is essentially a rhythm game if you get into the groove of the song it's heaps easier to anticipate when to swing. On top of that, there is a kind of 'standard' of block placement patterns that just work out well with human movement and all the people that make good custom maps seem to understand this for the most part.

The more hidden part of what makes this game so great is that there is a big modding and custom content community.
Most (if not all) of the best songs and most satisfying beatmaps (beatmap being the custom made block placement for songs) are user created. There is a really great website called BeastSaber.
It's worth having a quick check over now to get a good feel for just how many custom maps there are and the broad range of music genres are there too. They have ratings, curated playlists etc, that really make it easy to get new songs to play.
AND there is a mod for the game that lets you browse for these things using in-game menus.
Plus a few other great mods that really give it that extra bit of kick for what was already a damn fine game.

It's fun watching people new to VR have a go at it. Watching them be all gumby because their brain hasn't learned to modify its peripersonal space to encompass the tools used via the in-game UI, but instead covers just the controller they first saw in real-space.
Then after a few songs watching them rapidly gain understanding and then they start getting into the game and you can totally tell when most people hit 'flow'.
Oh yeah, this game is excellent at inducing the state of Flow in people, it's probably one of the biggest factors for so many people really liking the game.

The Base game only comes with a small handful of tracks which are OK .. but for most people won't be their most favoured taste of music. So the custom songs really, really are needed to get the most out of it, for the most people.

Posts: 16915
Location: Cairns, Queensland

Does this mean valve will be porting or creating VR games? cause this might turn the tide...

Valve has confirmed 3 'full game' titles in development, one being a half life port/remaster IIRC.

The headset is OK but not light years beyond the Vive Pro as far as I can tell.

Looking forward to buying some Knuckles when they become available in AU.
Posts: 18545
Location: Brisbane, Queensland

Does this mean valve will be porting or creating VR games? cause this might turn the tide...

They have created the odd VR experience, and they do a really good job at what they have done. Whilst simplistic in content (yet fun and engaging) they have shown excellent understanding of VR space and how to try maximize the sense of presence with the equipment available, and not doing things that are likely to interfere with that sense of presence.

They are said to be working on 3 different titles, one of which is probably Left for Dead VR.
There may have been a mention by a Valve person about a Half Life title. Although that may have been in the context of a remaster of what there already is ... which in itself could be pretty awesome ..

The biggest, currently 'unsolved' issue for VR is movement.
Due to the simple fact that our bodies strongly sense inertia when we move and that those senses are strongly tied into the limbic system, our sense of presence in the VR world is heavily affected by any non-congruent movement. By that I mean any movement that doesn't have a matching real-world movement.

So if you 'walk' forward in the VR world and you body doesn't actually move similar enough to walking forward (so ZERO sense of inertia) many people get thrown off by this and sense of presence rapidly diminishes and for some, feelings of nausea, etc increase. Most people get that movement sickness for the first couple of VR sessions of games with such movement. However many people, including myself, rapidly gain tolerance to that and it not longer affects them, the nausea aspect. The drop in sense of presence remains tho.

So there are several different types of movement techniques that are in use, trying to find a way that works well enough to heavily reduce that negative impact to the Sense of Presence. Teleporting is the simplest option and most games use it to some extent (some exclusively use it, others use it as a last resort method of reorienting the game world for the users play-space).

The other most used option is to use the control pads for player movement, this causes a sense of movement in the brain without the accompanying inertia sense from the body. Some games even use this incongurency as a directed experience as part of the game which can work quite well, but limited in usability and frequency.

There is an awesome Steam/OpenVR program called Natural Locomotion, it is an experimental, evolving set of options for VR games for movement in the VR worldspace. They have a stack of different features and movement options that go beyond what is offered in games. These movement options from Natural Locomotion can override the in-game movement. Of course this can be used to do unintentional things, however the majority of people using VR and definitely those using this MOD are chasing a solution to the movement problem in VR.

My favourite feature is their work on foot tracking. So using a tracker (they support vive trackers and controllers, PSMOVE controllers (using psmoveservice), and a couple other things I think) attached to each foot, it can be used to create additional, novel, movement options. Such as walking on the spot, which has been shown to significantly attenuate the impact to sense of presence from in-game movement not matching the bodily experience. It works much better because the body is at least giving the brain signals that the feet are moving and internal muscles are activating for maintain 'walking' balance and these signals (plus more) are reaching the brain and matching the in-game intention of movement. The brain prefers to fill in the 'blanks' rather than deal with incongurency. So the smaller the 'blank gaps' in the senses needed to fill, the better it is for sense of presence.

I love the mix of VR, physiology and psychology. It's great. Body Swap Illusions can be induced and put into interesting effects in game .. I think anyway. Few games have attempted that ..yet :)
Posts: 16918
Location: Cairns, Queensland

Yeh I've mucked about with movement-in-place and a other few bits and pieces, its pretty cool.
Posts: 18546
Location: Brisbane, Queensland
Pavlov is a great game too.

It essentially is copying Counter Strike mechanics and gameplay and adapting it for VR. Except, it's done well and isn't crap. Reloading, aiming, etc is all done with two hands, it all works well enough so that the players who tend to do well are those who play careful, etc similar to CS. Of course, bulls*** happens too so you can pull of those fun random moments of destroying the other team or everyone in DM, etc.

The only problem with it is the currently low player-base of VR means that you often have to play on international servers (US and Europe, there are South-East Asia too which is mostly Aus players .. when they are around that is). Although, even with the higher pings it still plays well enough.

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