Full games — not tech demos — are coming to the Oculus Rift. Oculus, the company behind the impressive Oculus Rift virtual reality headset announced it will be co-publishing EVE: Valkyrie, the first full-size game possibly slated for later this year.
While we've seen tons of Oculus Rift tech demos since the company made dev kits available for purchase, the fact that a full-featured game is coming is exciting news. It's a signal that developers should finally start getting serious about virtual reality. Rift might not have a consumer model available yet, but if a real game is coming, it hopefully means they're close to finalizing hardware.
Since last year's E3, Oculus has trotted EVE: Valkyrie, a game that puts you in the cockpit of a spaceship as you dogfight your way through space. When we tried EVE: Valkyrie on the 720p Oculus Rift dev kit, we were wowed by how realistic (and dizzying) it was to look around the virtual cockpit (and at a body that isn't real).
At last month's CES, we were treated to an improved version of EVE: Valkyrie demoed on the Crystal Cove version of Rift. With low-persistence (reduced motion blur) and positional tracking, the game demo only felt more realistic.
Creating games for virtual reality isn't as simple as porting a console or PC game over. It requires completely new groundwork, just as shooting a movie in proper 3D does (as opposed to a conversion), as outlined by EVE: Valkyrie programmers Robert Clarke and Sigurður Gunnarsson:
"We strongly believe the best VR experiences are going to be the ones built from the ground up for VR, and we’ve kept that in mind whilst developing Valkyrie. We wanted people to really feel like they were there – to sense the vastness of space, feel the confined area of the cockpit and get that adrenaline rush as you see an exploding fighter whizz past your head."
We know John Carmack recently left id Software so that he could work full-time at Oculus. We've got a feeling he's working on some VR games over there. Hold on to your butts guys, VR is coming soon. Real soon.
Via Oculus VR