Once upon a time, not so long ago, there was only one VR gaming treadmill out there: the Virtuix Omni. Wearing a pair of super-slick shoes, gamers experienced the ability to walk around in virtual worlds for the first time. But now that VR gaming is officially becoming a thing, it was only a matter of time before a competitor arrived. Introducing the Virtualizer, the Omni's worst nightmare.
Strangely, the team behind the Virtualizer doesn't even seem to know that their competition over at Virtuix even exists. Maybe that's because they're a rag-tag bunch of students and researchers from the University of Vienna. Maybe it's because the Omni doesn't ship until next year, which coincidentally is just about when the Virtualizer is slated to hit the market.
With thousands of preorders already placed, you might think that the folks over at Virtux couldn't be bothered by an upstart competitor. In the case of the Virtualizer, however, that would be a serious mistake. With an adjustable harness height, the Virtualizer is designed to fit nearly any gamer like a glove. That adjustable harness also means that gamers will be able to crouch and take cover just as naturally as they would in real life. The Virtualizer also tracks run-speed all on its own, something the Omni needs a little professional help to get done. Oh, and you don't need a pair of special shoes to hop into the Virtualizer — socks will do just fine.
The team at the University of Vienna even claim that they have eliminated the nausea-inducing lag prevalent in most VR gaming rigs today. Sensors in the plate below the user's feet and attached to the harness feed directional data to your VR headset almost instantaneously. If this claim is true, then the Virtualizer really is an Omni killer.
As of the writing of this article, no pricing information is available for the Virtualizer, but the team behind it have pledged to keep the eventual sticker price as low as possible. if they somehow find a way to undercut the $499 it'll run you to preorder an Omni, then the writing really will be on the wall for Virtuix.