Virtual Reality Becoming a Realty?

Kopin and 3001 AD to Bring Virtual Reality to Xbox, PlayStation and PCs on GameInfoWire (thanks Mike Martinez) announces virtual reality goggle technology from 3001 AD that looks to fulfill the long failed promise of better VR for gamers. Here's a bit on the low cost low resolution future:
Kopin Corp., the largest U.S. manufacturer of microdisplays for mobile consumer electronics, today announced that virtual reality gaming developer 3001 AD, LLC has incorporated the BDM-230K into its Trimersion virtual reality system, which for the first time will bring virtual reality gaming to the Microsoft Xbox, Sony PlayStation and PCs. 3001 AD unveiled Trimersion last month at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), the world's largest gaming exposition.

Trimersion brings full immersion and 360-degree head tracking to home gaming, and is the only system to deliver high-quality, cross-platform virtual reality for this market. The Kopin BDM-230K, a complete binocular video subsystem, delivers crisp, full-color, QVGA-quality (320 x 240 resolution) video with a virtual image equivalent to a 35-inch display viewed from a seven-foot distance.
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41.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 13:22
41.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 13:22
Jun 25, 2005, 13:22
 
Orogogus: OK, now I think I see what you're saying. The problem is that moving your head is actually a very poor mechanism for controlling anything beyond general point of view. So HMD's are great for being able to "look around" intuitively in a game, but are terrible for actually controlling the game (as in flying a spaceship, or controlling an FPS). People are very used to controlling things with their hands (like a car, bicycle, or even a mouse), and hands are very naturally adept and making finely controlled movements. Your neck muscles aren't nearly as adept, as they're only used to get your head pointed in the right general direction. After that, your eyes do all the work.

Well, yeah. I think that's been hashed over in this thread. FPSes might be okay if the free reticle is reintroduced, but the #1 application should be games where sitting down and looking around is the natural mode of use. I don't want to use it to steer the spaceship, but to look around and have situational awareness come from the environment, instead of from the instruments. Focusing on FPSes as much as this company seems to be doing is a mistake, I think, but probably the selection of sim and simmish type games with POV control built-in is too small to be marketable.

(snip)

But if you're interested in controlling POV more intuitively, check out TrackIR. I hear it's quite good, and racing and flight sim enthusiasts swear by it. And it's only about $100 IIRC.

I looked at that before, and thought it seemed kind of gimmicky. It might be a superior controller, but it doesn't seem like it would necessarily improve immersion since apparently you have to keep your eyes focused on the monitor while you move your head around.

40.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 12:37
40.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 12:37
Jun 25, 2005, 12:37
 
Heh...I gotta be more carefull what I type I only played HG2...it was slightly too difficult for me, but the whole atmosphere and diversity (ground based AND spacebased!) was so cool. Played it quite a bit with a couple of friends over a LAN, back in the day ...great fun. I just wish I could get it to work properly on winXP.

I wonder where Dream Pod 9 is now? I did a google, and up pops this tabletop RPG site...These guys should get back into the PC gaming world

This comment was edited on Jun 25, 12:59.
39.
 
No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 12:29
39.
No subject Jun 25, 2005, 12:29
Jun 25, 2005, 12:29
 
Orogogus: OK, now I think I see what you're saying. The problem is that moving your head is actually a very poor mechanism for controlling anything beyond general point of view. So HMD's are great for being able to "look around" intuitively in a game, but are terrible for actually controlling the game (as in flying a spaceship, or controlling an FPS). People are very used to controlling things with their hands (like a car, bicycle, or even a mouse), and hands are very naturally adept and making finely controlled movements. Your neck muscles aren't nearly as adept, as they're only used to get your head pointed in the right general direction. After that, your eyes do all the work.

I tried playing Quake on those old VFX 3D googles and it was horrible. VERY difficult to control with any precision. It'd be better to control with the mouse, and have the visor change your point of view independent of the aiming reticule. Also, see someone else's comments about having to spin around in your chair just to turn around ingame.

But if you're interested in controlling POV more intuitively, check out TrackIR. I hear it's quite good, and racing and flight sim enthusiasts swear by it. And it's only about $100 IIRC.


Awesome Spume: For the rest of us dummies, I think you're going to have to explain how a 35" screen is like a 14' sphere. And what good is a spherical display anyways, unless you're sitting inside of it? Otherwise you're only seeing a fraction of the screen.



Awesome Spume

38.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 12:10
38.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 12:10
Jun 25, 2005, 12:10
 
Man, they should make a sequal to Heavy Gear...that game had promise with it's military atmosphere.

They did - HG2 came out in '99, I think, and it got great reviews, but it tanked.


“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
Avatar 17185
37.
 
No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 11:40
37.
No subject Jun 25, 2005, 11:40
Jun 25, 2005, 11:40
 
" but we can't just jump past progress..."

Alamar, I think the problem is that in the case of VR, it has too. VR failed once due to to heavy/bulke equipment and bad gfx/bad games. The only way VR is gonna work is if they come out with lightweight goggles and perfect motion tracking (I'm thinking OLED screen with decent resolution).

As far as screen size goes...in VR3D, it shouldn't be an issue: the eyes only focus on a tiny part of what's in front of them...many true flightsims (as in what they use to train pilots with) use this fact with a projection system which only has what you're looking at in high rez whilst the rest of the screen is fuzzy. Seeing as here the view moves with your head, in effect (as someone already pointed out) your screen size is basically all around your head anyway.

And I too would want a VR system just for the (pre crappy 4)Battlemech games, or Freespace/Starlancer/Tiefighter sims...or (if anyone remembers this) the Heavy Gear sim-type games. Man, they should make a sequal to Heavy Gear...that game had promise with it's military atmosphere.

36.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 10:43
36.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 10:43
Jun 25, 2005, 10:43
 
I don't know about you guys, but I am too old for my wife to catch me sitting at a computer with some giant visor-gizmo like Luke's Blast Shield helmet on my head!

My computer is in the living room, for God's sake! All of my kids' friends coming through the house would see me and think I was some freak or something. (Well, I am, but I do my best to hide it...)

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
Avatar 17185
35.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 08:48
35.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 08:48
Jun 25, 2005, 08:48
 
Orogogus, you seem to be missing the point. As cool as an immersive VR experience would be (which is to say VERY), this ain't it. If you're unsure (snip)

I got that point back in the first 5 posts in this thread, but I think it as the crazy talk of lunatics who'd rather play numbers instead of games. The main barrier to immersion when I play Freespace or Mechwarrior is the fact that I'm essentially controlling my vehicle via a remote camera, and throwing more pixels and inches at the problem isn't going to help. You could throw the same numbers out to prove that TIE Fighter was a quantifiably inferior game compared to, say, Starlancer, and it would convince me not at all. It's like telling me that the sound in one game is done better than another game's, because it's louder.

Anyways, I've heard elsewhere that the 3D effect of these goggles is hard to discern, which is pretty much what I thought of stereoscopic shutter glasses, so that's too bad. I'd still like to see some flight sims, space shooters, mecha games and combat racers adapted for it, but somehow I doubt that this company has that kind of vision in mind. Oh, well.

This comment was edited on Jun 25, 08:49.
34.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 07:31
34.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 07:31
Jun 25, 2005, 07:31
 
I still remember System Shock 1 supporting stereoscope glasses

So did Quake 1. Back in the day when I earned obscene amounts of money for my age and had no idea what to do with it at the time, I bought a VFX 1. Playing Quake in full 3d was a very different experience. In the end I sold it as it was an impractical piece of hardware with such a small viewing area, low resolution (at the time 3d accelerators had just started to move in) and latency.

I think playing an FPS with one of these things in the future would drastically change gameplay, slowing it down a lot. I agree with StreetPreacher. At the very least the range of view needs to be increased.

33.
 
Re: VR
Jun 25, 2005, 04:43
33.
Re: VR Jun 25, 2005, 04:43
Jun 25, 2005, 04:43
 

When will companies wake up. True immersion doesn't lie within an HMD.

http://www.planetquake.com/meanarena/blog.html#true_immersion

32.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 25, 2005, 02:41
32.
Re: No subject Jun 25, 2005, 02:41
Jun 25, 2005, 02:41
 
My vision went from 20/20 to 1600/1200. Don't know exactly how that happened. ????

Too much hand lovin? Boom boom.


Aren't these "my monitor is bigger than god (though my dick is tiny)" people missing the point that: the 35" view from 7 feet away is how much you get to see of what can effectively be a sphere 14ft across, the surface are of which is therefore 4 x pi x (d/2) sqrd, which equals 615 square feet of screen. Beat that.

31.
 
No subject
Jun 24, 2005, 23:31
31.
No subject Jun 24, 2005, 23:31
Jun 24, 2005, 23:31
 
Orogogus, you seem to be missing the point. As cool as an immersive VR experience would be (which is to say VERY), this ain't it. If you're unsure, mark off 35" on a wall with tape or something and then go stand 7 feet away. It's a tiny little postage stamp in your field of vision. That's not virtual reality... that's a virtual tiny little screen. By comparison, I sit about 1 1/2' away from a 24" monitor, and it doesn't even cover 1/2 of my field of vision. And the resolution? Pathetic. 320x240 vs. 1900x1200 on my current monitor. For those of you keeping track at home, that's 3% of the pixels on my current monitor. No thank you.

This product is doomed to fail until someone can make a better, lighter HMD with a higher resolution and larger field of vision. My personal favorite technology (which is still in it's infancy, and VERY expensive) is the one that skips the screen altogether, and uses low-powered lasers to draw the picture direcly on the back of your retina. Now THAT's the way of the future!

This comment was edited on Jun 24, 23:36.
30.
 
1st Gen Trimersion vs. TrackIR
Jun 24, 2005, 22:05
30.
1st Gen Trimersion vs. TrackIR Jun 24, 2005, 22:05
Jun 24, 2005, 22:05
 
This "Trimersion" sounds like a 1st generation mess unless I'm vomiting pea soup and spinning my head around to get the full 360-degree.

For flight sims(like IL2, LOMAC) the TrackIR system is something that you can't turn back from once you've tried it. Some flight simmers refuse to fly any game without it.

But I think "Trimersion" is going to require a generation or 2 before users and developers known when and when not to use it. Especially with users who are less technically sophisticated than flight simmers.

29.
 
higher rez
Jun 24, 2005, 19:57
29.
higher rez Jun 24, 2005, 19:57
Jun 24, 2005, 19:57
 
They gotta make it higher rez imho. With a mic for voice com, and 5.1 surround sound builtin. And as huge a screen as possible.

This comment was edited on Jun 24, 19:59.
28.
 
No subject
Jun 24, 2005, 19:46
28.
No subject Jun 24, 2005, 19:46
Jun 24, 2005, 19:46
 
When I saw the title with "Virtual Reality", I thought it was going to be something about Virtual Reality. Instead, it's display goggles.

Avatar 12787
27.
 
Re: Never mind
Jun 24, 2005, 18:48
27.
Re: Never mind Jun 24, 2005, 18:48
Jun 24, 2005, 18:48
 
The display specs sound bad, but they're actually fairly nice in practice. When i put it on i didn't think "wow, that must be 320x240." It looked good.

26.
 
Never mind
Jun 24, 2005, 18:24
26.
Never mind Jun 24, 2005, 18:24
Jun 24, 2005, 18:24
 
I'm stupid
This comment was edited on Jun 24, 18:27.
Avatar 22908
25.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 24, 2005, 17:52
25.
Re: No subject Jun 24, 2005, 17:52
Jun 24, 2005, 17:52
 
My vision went from 20/20 to 1600/1200. Don't know exactly how that happened. ????

24.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 24, 2005, 17:45
24.
Re: No subject Jun 24, 2005, 17:45
Jun 24, 2005, 17:45
 
"with a virtual image equivalent to a 35-inch display viewed from a seven-foot distance.

Which my friends = the SUCK!
Right now I'm almost 3feet from my 21" monitor.
You do the math."


As I said, I think the lot of your are nuts. I don't know how you guys can look at the possibility of playing an X-Wing or a BattleMech game, and being able to look out the cockpit or side windows, and just think, "Pffft, the viewscreen is too small." Or play a combat racing game with side- and rear-mounted weapons that are actually useful since you don't need to keep reorienting your reticle.

As has been pointed out, FPS games are a terrible fit for this, but I would pay $500 in a heartbeat to play VRified versions of play TIE Fighter or Mechwarrior 2 in their original 320x200 polygon glory with no textures or gouraud shading. People who don't think this way, and keep yammering on about 10 inch monitors and whatnot must be, no offense, girls.

23.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 24, 2005, 17:25
23.
Re: No subject Jun 24, 2005, 17:25
Jun 24, 2005, 17:25
 
"with a virtual image equivalent to a 35-inch display viewed from a seven-foot distance."

Which my friends = the SUCK!
Right now I'm almost 3feet from my 21" monitor.
You do the math.

22.
 
Re: No subject
Jun 24, 2005, 17:18
22.
Re: No subject Jun 24, 2005, 17:18
Jun 24, 2005, 17:18
 
I'm still waiting for ACTUAL REALITY. It's going to make VR look like kiddie fare.

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
- Mahatma Gandhi
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