Fantastic Contraption  Tagged Articles RSS Feed | Fantastic Contraption  RSS Feed on en Launch Media Network Steam VR, the HTC Vive, is finally here! Sat, 09 Apr 2016 05:37:26 -0400 Chrisator

HTC have finally released their much anticipated Virtual Reality system, and it looks quite amazing! If you checked out our In-depth comparison of upcoming VR Devices: VIVE, PS VR, Oculus Rift, and more, you'll certainly be quite familiar with the device, so I won't bore you with too many of the technical details. I will show you the awesome looking teaser, however!

The device will run you $799.00 (£689.00), and can be bought directly from HTC's website, right here. There are a plethora of games already available for the device on steam, with Job Simulator, Google's Tilt Brush and Fantastic Contraption all included with the device. There are also quite a few free and in development games you can get your hands on. All in all, there are currently 159 VR specific games available on Steam.

You will also remember the Steam Desktop VR feature we discussed in our article, which basically allows you to play all your Steam games in a VR setting with the use of the Game Theater option. Steam have also announced some cool looking features for their own games, with a spiffy video of a DotA 2 being viewed in theater mode.

If you're still on the fence about this cool new hardware, check out the full details and a bunch of great videos, including the ones above, on the SteamVR main page.

If you're thinking of buying the game, or are lucky enough to have one already, let us know what you think about it in the comments section below.

Fantastic Contraption coming to Vive is going to change what you think of VR multiplayer Thu, 27 Aug 2015 11:59:38 -0400 Destini Islands

Fantastic Contraption is a 2008 Flash-based physics game based on building and puzzles. While official server support ended February the creators have announced something much greater - it's coming to virtual reality.

Raising the bar to a whole new dimension (three dimensions, to be exact), Fantastic Contraption is going to be a full, room-scale game for the Vive headset. Developers Radial Games and Northway Games are partnering for the project, which will be revealed at PAX and be available for demo.

Why Vive? And the assumptions of multiplayer

Fantastic Contraption isn't just another game riding the hype of the incoming VR revolution. According to the trailer, the Vive headset was necessary for FC because the game requires hand interaction for building. The people in the trailer help the main player and have a fun time watching the screen.

What's seen in the trailer is different from the usual imagery surrounding multiplayer in VR. When people imagine the future of virtual reality, they tend to go to extreme media examples. They envision downloading consciousness into a digital body or isolation inside a bubble. Or, they think of bumping into household objects, being unable to hear danger, or generally becoming a hazard.

The difference in the FC trailer compared to most other VR game trailers is the inclusion of friends helping each other; in other words, physical interaction with players.

These are legitimate concerns. With every new technology, there are unknown factors and unique problems. But, all these are on the basis that there are no physical bodies around.

The importance of human presence

With the influx of VR game development, it's easy to get caught up by the idea that VR is a single-player experience unless you're playing with or against other users. Fantastic Contraption is a sigh of relief in that it not only encourages local multiplayer, but in a low-stakes, casual environment - not like the more ambitious VR projects that need extensive space and equipment.

Encouraging human presence, notably human presence that isn't equipped in expensive VR gear, is far more likely to make it into everyday homes.  Fears about taking the next step of introducing VR into a home can be alleviated if family-friendly ideas like FC become commonplace.

To crush precaution is to crush the idea that VR is an isolated beast reserved for hardcore gamers. Instead, envision as a multiplayer experience that is still appropriate for the living room. There's not always a need for graphic realism and concentration in gaming. Sometimes, the best games are the ones anyone can have fun in.

Take it from the trailer:

"Building things is the most human thing you can do."