Oculus Rift Tagged Articles RSS Feed | GameSkinny.com Oculus Rift RSS Feed on GameSkinny.com https://www.gameskinny.com/ en Launch Media Network Universal, Digital Domain Announce Voltron VR Chronicles https://www.gameskinny.com/0yhgz/universal-digital-domain-announce-voltron-vr-chronicles https://www.gameskinny.com/0yhgz/universal-digital-domain-announce-voltron-vr-chronicles Tue, 29 Aug 2017 16:16:42 -0400 Erroll Maas

Today, Digital Domain and Universal have announced Voltron VR Chronicles, a new virtual reality game for HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and PlayStation VR based on the Netflix animated series Voltron: Legendary Defender.

In Voltron VR Chronicles, the player will take the role of one of the paladins of Voltron to participate in space battles, solve puzzles, and complete challenges. Not much gameplay has been shown so far, but it's fair to speculate that the game will be a brief experience similar to Batman Arkham VR and PlayStation Worlds, due to its $14.99 price point. The game will be released on September 26, but PS VR owners who pre-order it today will get a 20% discount.

The first season of Voltron: Legendary Defender premiered on Netflix on June 10, 2016, with the second season premiering on January 20. The third season, which is half the length of the previous two seasons, premiered on August 4 and the fourth season will premiere on October 13. The series is notable for being made by some of the same people and the same animation studio behind Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra.

Stay tuned to GameSkinny for more news and information on Voltron VR Chronicles as it develops. 

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Age Of Heroes VR Hits Kickstarter https://www.gameskinny.com/vhgf7/age-of-heroes-vr-hits-kickstarter https://www.gameskinny.com/vhgf7/age-of-heroes-vr-hits-kickstarter Sun, 07 May 2017 19:07:34 -0400 UltimateWarriorNot

We recently covered the announcement of OmniGames new MMO-inspired virtual reality title Age Of Heroes VR. Just over a week later, the developers have launched a $10,000 Kickstarter campaign to expand the scope of the title. Age of Heroes VR looks to bring a multiplayer raid experience to virtual reality players.

The developers are seeking to improve the game's core content and have several stretch goals that go in depth about potential features for the title. However, should the game not get funded on Kickstarter, all is not lost. 

OmniGames stated: 

"We have the private resources that will allow us to deliver the core product. Actually, we expect to release the early access of the game this May. Then why Kickstarter? The answer is actually very simple. We want to make it even better with more raids, more classes, and more game modes. And only with your voice and support could make this happen. Kickstarter builds the bridge to connect us directly to you, our most valuable players." 

This means that the core game will be hitting Steam's Early Access platform incredibly soon, which likely explains why the Kickstarter campaign is only six days long. Age Of Heroes VR is set to provid features like multiplayer raids, an actual body movement system, and RPG character progression. Regardless of the Kickstarter, it won't be long until players can see the game in action on Steam.

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What Even Is McOsu? Because It's Not Osu! https://www.gameskinny.com/mhaa0/what-even-is-mcosu-because-its-not-osu https://www.gameskinny.com/mhaa0/what-even-is-mcosu-because-its-not-osu Tue, 18 Apr 2017 12:00:02 -0400 ThatGamersAsylum

Throughout the years most of us have had some experience with rhythm games. Whether it be the peripheral invasion and subsequent living room takeover of Guitar Hero and Rock Band respectively throughout the 2000's, or the dominance of dancing games like Dance Dance Rev coming full circle with Ubisoft’s Just Dance games that utilized motion tracking. During much of this time, a rhythm game has been quietly building and maintaining its own niche audience: Osu!

In order to truly understand what exactly McOsu is, you must first understand what Osu! is.

Osu! is an open source rhythm game for PC and Mac, with derivative games released on mobile platforms such as iOS, Android, and even the Windows Phone. The gameplay itself is based on various rhythm games, such as Ouendan/Elite Beat Agents. But perhaps the official website puts it best:

While keeping some authentic elements, Osu! adds huge customization via skins/beatmaps/storyboarding, online rankings, multiplayer, and boasts a community with over 500,000 active users! Play the way you want to play -- with your own music -- and share your creations with others.

A tutorial to give you a basic feel for Osu!

So OK: What the Heck is McOsu, Then?

McOsu's (Short) History

Interestingly, McOsu was founded in this same spirit of open-ended customization. McOsu plays the exact same way as Osu! It uses the same notes, sliders, and spinners, too. You even use the same beatmaps you would otherwise load into standard Osu! The only substantial difference between the two is all of the extra mods that have been added into McOsu that are not in the base game, which I will get to in a bit.

First, it is important to realize the context in which McOsu was created. Its development started before Osu! became open source, and its alpha was released around the same time that Osu! went open source.

Reading through the Reddit announcement, which was posted onto the Osu! subreddit, you can see a conversation between McKay, the creator of McOsu, and Peppy, the creator of Osu!, in which they discuss the future of their respective games in a little bit more detail.

But the TL;DR is that Peppy doesn’t seem bothered by the existence of McOsu, even going so far as to inquire about McKay eventually helping with work on Osu as a community contributor.

McKay seems dissatisfied with the potential shackles of doing something like that, however. Working on an official product like Osu! comes with certain boundaries that are not so easily circumvented. Adding in certain features that he wants and has included in McOsu might be harder while keeping a clean, or intuitive UI.

McOsu's McUses

McOsu's biggest reason for existing is to practice. This is stated by McKay in both his Reddit announcement and on the game’s official storefront pages on both Github and Steam. It's also backed up by many users. They want to be able to practice songs more easily. The most prominent features for McOsu assist with this.

Options, Options Everywhere

Speed

In McOsu, you can change the speed of songs more easily and with greater finesse. For instance, changing the Beats Per Minute (BPM) will make the song go faster, but will not change the Approach Rate (AR), how fast the circle closes in on the note, or the Overall Difficulty (OD), the number of milliseconds you have to click the circle when it meets up with the note. Changing the Speed Multiplier, however, makes everything faster.

Scrubbing

You can scrub through the song to get to certain points that you might be struggling with. McKay even mentioned that he had been getting requests to create a bookmark feature, so that players didn’t need to scrub, but so that they could automatically skip to the place they wanted to practice. However, I do not think this feature has yet been added.

Rotation

You can make the screen rotate while you are playing, which some say helps them more naturally react to the notes rather than just use muscle memory to naturally get better at hard beatmaps.

Skipping 

You can skip past parts in a song that have no notes. Many argue that this helps them keep their flow going.

Novelty

FPS, Rainbow Notes, and VR

The game also features a lot of novel features too, like turning all the notes rainbow colored. Or a first person mode where the screen moves around and you “shoot” the notes.

Perhaps most intriguingly is the fact that the game supports VR play for the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift. This is particularly noteworthy since the VR market is so starved for content that any game is welcome. A solid adaption of a successful, quality rhythm game, like Osu, which has a huge database of user-generated content is all the more welcome.

NO Note Locking

One of the more notable changes in McOsu is the absence of note locking. Note locking is where the game requires you to play the notes in a particular order. The reason this is a problem in Osu! is that missing a note can cause the game to not register that you attempted to hit that note, meaning that when you move on to the next note it won’t register it because you didn’t hit the prior note. This, in turn, can cause you to miss a whole string of notes, which can possibly make you lose on a beatmap, especially on harder difficulties.

Reception

It is hard to tell how many people actually use McOsu. Parsing the subreddit it seems as if some people really love it and yet others used it for a little while but went back to just inefficiently practicing in Osu! A very common complaint is that McOsu feels different. Not worse, but different. Some people feel that playing McOsu throws them off when they return to playing Osu!, others just say something feels slightly off. Some discussions have said that McOsu seems easier and/or smoother than Osu! In short, I would suggest testing out McOsu for a while to get your own reactions on the game.

Development Proceeds...

According to GitHub, development seems to continue at a steady rate. Although the developers have done a poor job of communicating with the fan base. For instance, the only major announcement I can find seems to be associated with the Alpha 20 release, which didn’t feature the Osu! Databases for loading beatmaps, meaning loading beatmaps was slow. Well, Alpha 25 added in Osu! Databases. Yay! That’s a pretty big deal. Yet their GitHub still uses the same feature video for Alpha Release 20. And that video was done in one take; I know because they say so in the video.

So what do you think about McOsu? Is it useful, or just treading too closely to Osu! (which itself could be said to tread too closely to its predecessors)? Had you ever heard of Osu!? If not, are you now interested in these games now? Both games are free, so if you have an interest in playing them there's no reason to not try*. 

You can download Osu! from their official website.

While you can download McOsu from Steam or GitHub

*Please note we are in no way affiliated with either of these games. I am merely making it easier for our readers to find these niche games. 

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Ten Oculus Rift Games All Oculus Owners Must Play https://www.gameskinny.com/uknqm/ten-oculus-rift-games-all-oculus-owners-must-play https://www.gameskinny.com/uknqm/ten-oculus-rift-games-all-oculus-owners-must-play Mon, 02 Jan 2017 03:00:01 -0500 sknau002

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The Oculus Rift went through some strange times between their announcement and release, such as being bought by Facebook. Many people weren't sure that was a good thing for the future of the virtual reality headset, but it hasn't seemed to get in the way of its success.

\n

This was our definitive list of games that should absolutely be played on the Oculus Rift. We made sure to only include games that are available now and not games that are currently being developed, so if there are any you're looking forward to, or any currently available games you feel that we missed, let us know!

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/76493c6f7c8dcf36053b75eaa6bc33b6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/76493c6f7c8dcf36053b75eaa6bc33b6.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10117","description":"

Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes

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By: Steel Crate Games | $7.49 | Oculus Store
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If you watch any YouTubers, you probably know about this game. The goal is to disarm a bomb. But you don't have the instructions to make it happen. Your friends, however, do.

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This game was originally not on Oculus Rift, but now that it is, it absolutely adds to the tension of the game. You can't peek over at your friend's instructions for one, and on top of that, not everything is right in front of the player, so scrambling for the right tools may easily happen.

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The best part of Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes is that it's multiplayer. There aren't many multiplayer VR games, especially in the couch co-op category, but this game handles it cleverly, by requiring only one headset to play. This is definitely a required Oculus Rift title for anyone who plans to game with friends.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/7fde5e4e4ba6c8edf33e7641a0f01b06.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/7fde5e4e4ba6c8edf33e7641a0f01b06.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10116","description":"

AirMech: Command

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By: Carbon Games | $24.99 | Oculus Store
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Just to keep things shaken up, here's another recommended Oculus Rift game that isn't from the first-person perspective.

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AirMech: Command is a real-time strategy game played from the perspective of a typical RTS game, but now the camera is controlled with the players head. It makes looking back and forth from different battles and bases easier. The defining concept is where the player is watching from: Their Airmech. It's the ultimate war machine that can be used in-game to turn the tide of battle, but during regular combat, it's the perch from which the player watches and commands the battle. 

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There are nine Airmechs to control that have varying abilities, allowing different types of gameplay -- shaking up the misconception that virtual reality games can't offer variation.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/2782cbadf196ea1bb9519cce237d7e8b.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/2782cbadf196ea1bb9519cce237d7e8b.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10115","description":"

Lucky's Tale

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By: Playful | $Free | Oculus Store
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Lucky's Tale is a Third-person game. Right from the get-go that sounds awful for a virtual reality game. But surprisingly, it works really well.

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The player's head is the camera and can look and peak around the game while the controller actually controls the main character, Lucky. It plays like a typical third-person platformer from the Nintendo 64 and Gamecube days, but with some VR tricks up its sleeve. It's free on the Oculus store, so once again the barrier of entry is nonexistent -- assuming you have the headset of course.

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For those looking for fun for all ages, Lucky's Tale is definitely a good one for this.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/e3904f3573eb64e6c83c093ed0a15790.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/e3904f3573eb64e6c83c093ed0a15790.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10114","description":"

Chronos

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By: Gunfire Games | 24.99 | Oculus Store
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Some have said they don't want VR because they think it's a gimmick; that "real" games won't use VR. Chronos is here to disprove that. The dungeon crawling RPG, aims to be that first Oculus RPG that sets the standard for others. It has a unique mechanic that plays with time. Every time the player dies, they age a year and your skills and abilities also change, making every new attempt at the dungeon different.

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The game plays like a fantasy RPG, but the game is actually set in a distant future where an apocalypse has sent humanity back to the days of swords and shields. It plays similarly to a Zelda game in the puzzle solving, but the battle mechanics are something of their own.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/01311cf98d8880717c36675233b4c5f6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/01311cf98d8880717c36675233b4c5f6.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10113","description":"

The Climb

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By: Crytek | $33.49 | Oculus Store
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Have you ever wanted to go rock climbing, but you're afraid of heights? Same. But with The Climb from Crytek, this goal suddenly becomes much easier.

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Become a rock climber without the threat of dying from a fall (in real life anyway) in this beautiful simulation. Seriously, most of this game could probably be spent just looking around. Despite Crytek's recent issues, they still have a beautiful looking engine -- the CryEngine.

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The Climb is also tense as hell when you're about to fall off a ledge, but instead of it being a character about to fall, it's you. Don't worry, in reality, the worst thing you could fall on is a carpeted living room floor (unless you have wooden floors).

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/307f93b5afd51c65d7c37473292759b3.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/307f93b5afd51c65d7c37473292759b3.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10112","description":"

The Gallery: Call of The Starseed

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By: Cloudhead Games | $14.99 | Oculus Store
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This game is its own special kind of game. It's not a first-person shooter, but it's also not a walking simulator. It's somewhere in the middle, solving environmental puzzles to progress.

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The game draws inspiration from 80's fantasy films and places the hero in a world where he must find his sister through a strange journey and a constant "sinister presence" according to the Steam description. From the Steam page, one can see that The Gallery started as a HTC Vive game, but has recently come to the Oculus Rift as well. It was a bestseller for the Vive, and it can only be predicted to see the same success on the Oculus.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/125d3435af702a48492d7ef8b0ae1ebb.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/125d3435af702a48492d7ef8b0ae1ebb.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10109","description":"

The Unspoken 

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By: Insomniac Games | $29.99 | Oculus Store
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With the Oculus Rift and the Touch controller in mind, The Unspoken game takes it to the limit of what can be done with these peripherals. This is one of the games that makes people think this new virtual reality attempt isn't just another fad.

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The developers describe the game as an "urban magic fight club" where players fight friends and strangers in the streets of a city using 25 different spells. These spells can be tuned to either hand too, leaving the creativity literally in your hands.

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Spells aren't just offensive skills either. They can also be defensive and traversal! Leaving room for custom strategies.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/253a32f270831b3d8b78aa05d35fd8de.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/253a32f270831b3d8b78aa05d35fd8de.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10108","description":"

SUPERHOT VR

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By: Superhot | $22.49 | Oculus Store
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Man, Superhot is awesome. It originally released as a non-VR title, but has since released to virtual reality. It genuinely feels like it was meant to be a VR title the whole time.

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Superhot is a title that questions what's real. The story puts a computer hacker into the chair of a computer before pulling them into a simulation that feels a little too real... Is it real? Or is technology just playing tricks on us?

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The world only moves forward when they player moves, making them able to guess everyone's moves and plan accordingly. But remember, one shot is enough to kill you. Health doesn't regenerate, ammo is limited to what's in the magazine, and way too many enemies to plan out a strategy in one go. Good thing restarts are instantaneous. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/d8aaed23d0da3c1817bfea10ae0f2c1c.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinny/d8aaed23d0da3c1817bfea10ae0f2c1c.jpg","type":"youtube","id":"10107","description":"

Bullet Train

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By: Epic Games | $Free | Oculus Store
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We really wanted to put Robo Recall on this list, but it's technically not out yet for the public. So Bullet Train is the next best thing! It's a free game from Epic Games that actually serves as a proving grounds for Robo Recall, the next game from Epic.

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The premise is simple: You get off a train and are attacked by futuristic police. Why? We don't know, it's a free tech demo that is actually way more fun than it should be.

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You can teleport and manipulate time, much like the next title on this list, but with a few differences. For the price tag of $0.00, it's definitely worth checking out.

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ADR1FT

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By: Three One Zero | $19.99 | Steam
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ADR1FT is a virtual reality game played with the Oculus Rift that takes place in zero gravity. It's a game based heavily on exploration, but players have limited resources such as oxygen as they navigate a destroyed space station.

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The player must solve puzzles which consist of fixing up/navigating the damaged space station. Audio logs of the incident that destroyed the station can be found throughout the game, as well as artifacts from those who were not lucky enough to survive.

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According to the game, there are two main objectives: "to survive and to return home safely."

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_360,w_640/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculus-86e4f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,h_85,w_97/e_sharpen:100/f_auto,fl_lossy,q_auto/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculus-86e4f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"146278","description":"

The Oculus Rift was the first real player in this current-day virtual reality arms race. Announced back in 2012, it's what sparked other companies to compete -- bringing in the PlayStation VR and HTC Vive.

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With both the competitors launching with motion controls (the Vive using it's own, and the PS VR using the Move controllers), the Oculus Rift was a bit behind, but has recently released the Touch controllers (at $199) for all your reaching needs.

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When it finally released to consumers in March 2016, it had a library full of experimental games during its long development process. Thanks to that, some have been formed into fully fledged games, while others provided the groundwork for others. This is a list of 10 games all Oculus Rift owners must play.

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7 Virtual Reality Headsets Core and Casual Gamers Can Buy Right Now https://www.gameskinny.com/w6j33/7-virtual-reality-headsets-core-and-casual-gamers-can-buy-right-now https://www.gameskinny.com/w6j33/7-virtual-reality-headsets-core-and-casual-gamers-can-buy-right-now Mon, 12 Dec 2016 08:16:03 -0500 Jonathan Moore

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There's no question about it. The virtual reality revolution has begun. 2016 was a watershed year for the industry -- and it's only going to get bigger and better in the coming years. 

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And it won't just be headsets that will be taking into video game worlds. From increasingly state-of-the-art haptic controllers to the evolution of haptic VR rigs like the Virtuix Omni (pictured above) and the crazily futuristic Teslasuit (which provides real-time full-body feedback for VR environments), we'll soon be entering what Ready Player One calls, The Oasis. And boy, will it taste oh, so good. 

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Which VR headset are you planning on picking up? Do you already have one? Or did we leave one of the list? Let us know in the comments below!

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/g/o/o/google-cardboard-bead9.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/g/o/o/google-cardboard-bead9.jpg","type":"slide","id":"144338","description":"
Google Cardboard
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Rating: 3.8/5 (138 reviews)

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Price: $15.00

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Buy it on: Google Store

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No virtual reality headset list would be complete without taking a (real) look at Google Cardboard. Sure, on the outside it may not look like much, and it might have a small (and more physical) barrier to entry in that you actually have to "build" the darn thing, but hear me out: You'll want to know why Google Cardboard could be the perfect entry point for anyone wanting to try out virtual reality.

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Google has a pretty stellar offering of apps that let you experience virtual reality right from your phone for about the price a decent afternoon meal. From Youtube to InMind to Star Wars VR and Google street view, Google Cardboard is an awesome little gadget(?) that gives you a lot in return -- for cheap. Most of the games come in under $5. 

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And wouldn't you know, this thing actually works fairly well for what you're paying to get it -- the field of view isn't bad and it's not terribly uncomfortable. 

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Problem is: Google Cardboard doesn't have a lot of games right now. Mainly, the VR experiences are apps and well, experiences. Now, there are games like

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Now, there are games like Proton Pulse, Wizard Academy VR, End Space VR and Hardcode that are smashing fun, but the number of out-right games on the device(?) comes in at a small handful. 

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And, we shouldn't have to say (just look at the picture above), but Google Cardboard has ZERO bells and whistles. It's as minimalist as you can possibly make your VR-game. 

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Who's Google Cardboard For? 

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ANYONE curious about VR that also has some cash to burn. There are some truly amazing things you can do with Google Cardboard; you're just not going to get anything like the Oculus or PSVR here. This is foot-in-the-door only. Only the casual of the casual VR enthusiast need apply. 

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Specifications

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    \n
  • It's a headset
  • \n
  • It has lenses
  • \n
  • It lets you see VR with your phone
  • \n
  • It's cheap
  • \n
"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/o/m/homido-2c4dc.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/o/m/homido-2c4dc.jpg","type":"slide","id":"144295","description":"
Homido V2
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Rating: 3.8/5 (74 reviews)

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Price: $79.99

\n

Buy it on: Best Buy

\n

Another budget model for mobile devices, this virtual reality headset offers a 100-degree field of view, and, unlike the Samsung Gear VR, is compatible with iPhones (the latest version of the headset is compatible with iPhone 6S Plus and older). 

\n

But what really sets the Homido V2 apart from the Samsung Gear VR is that it's more lightweight, can be played on smaller mobile screens (a 4.0" minimum screen width vs the Gear's 5.1" minimum screen width), has Inter Pupil Distance controls, and is almost $50 cheaper than the Gear VR -- with negligible differences in graphical prowess. 

\n

The downside? The Homido V2 doesn't sport some of the flashier bells and whistles (at least not of this writing) that the Gear VR does, like USB-Type C functionality and a standard control system. What's more, it doesn't have the catalog of games and apps that the Gear VR does -- although that seems to be changing as more developers embrace the hardware. 

\n

Who's the Homido V2 For? 

\n

As it stands, the Homido is a great VR headset if you're looking to get your feet wet in the virtual reality space. Really, it's no more than a glorified phone-holder with lenses right now. But the company is steady at work to change that, as a slew of new peripherals is set to hit the system in the very near future.

\n

But, if you're looking for a more tech-savvy headset, pay a bit extra and pick up the Samsung Gear VR. 

\n

Specifications

\n

Oddly, very few specifications for the Homido V2 can be found. However, here's what we were able to dig up: 

\n
    \n
  • Display technology: Low-persistence OLED
  • \n
  • Resolution: Smartphone resolution
  • \n
  • Refresh rate: Smartphone refresh rate
  • \n
  • Field of view: 100 degrees
  • \n
  • Sound: Smartphone sound
  • \n
  • Controller input: Conductive button
  • \n
"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/o/s/v/osvr-hdk-c680f.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/o/s/v/osvr-hdk-c680f.jpg","type":"slide","id":"144284","description":"
Razer OSVR HDK 2
\n

Rating: N/A

\n

Price: $369.99

\n

Buy it on: Newegg

\n

This headset is a bit different than the others we’ve showcased on this list so far. Why? Well, the Razer OSVR HDK 2 is an open-source VR headset. That means it’s super game-developer friendly.

\n

And one the very best things about this headset is that its display is on-par with that of the Oculus and Vive, something that developer Razer is very proud of, as the company is aggressively pushing the open source virtual reality movement in hopes to empower game developers across the board, both large and small.

The newest version of the headset, the HDK 2 improves on the original’s design in many ways, including adding a second screen (one for both of your eyes) and boosting the frame frequency to 90 FPS from 60 FPS.

\n

Essential reading: How Game Developers Can Win in the Virtual Reality Market

\n

However, if you’re looking for a VR headset that’s comfortable, you probably want to look somewhere else, because while the HDK 2 is highly customizable, its current features make donning the headset an obtuse affair. 

\n

Who’s the Razer OSVR HDK 2 For?

\n

At its heart, the Razer OSVR HDK 2 is for the game dev community. Whether you’re a game dev noob or a seasoned veteran, this headset, while certainly not as powerful as the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift, is a great entry point to the technology.

With a relatively low price and sporting such easy-to-use development tools (games and apps developed for the HDK 2 can also be ported to other VR platforms, making the HDK a great device to get your feet wet), the Razer OSVR HDK 2 can get you up and running in considerably less time than its cohorts.

\n

What’s more, if you’re just an average-Joe gamer, this headset is worth checking out, too, especially at its current price point. Many of the games found in the Vive's content catalog can be found for the HDK2, too. 

\n

Specifications

\n
    \n
  • Display technology: Low-persistence OLED
  • \n
  • Resolution: 2160x1200
  • \n
  • Refresh rate: 60-120hz
  • \n
  • Field of view: 110 degrees
  • \n
  • Connection: Sensor hub with accelerometer, gyroscope
  • \n
  • Sound: Surround sound audio codec
  • \n
  • Controller input: Third-party
  • \n
"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/p/s/v/psvr-sony-b85ca.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/p/s/v/psvr-sony-b85ca.jpg","type":"slide","id":"143932","description":"
PSVR
\n

Rating: 4.6/5 (469 reviews)

\n

Price: $399.99 (headset); $459.98 (with PlayStation camera) 

\n

Buy it on: BestBuy

\n

At a decent price-point, the PlayStation VR is one of the (very) few consumer-centric virtual reality headsets that gives gamers a relatively high-end virtual reality gaming experience for an affordable price. In other words: While the PlayStation VR is cheaper than the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, it still packs one hell of a punch. 

\n

One thing that sets the PlayStation VR apart from the previous two entries on our list is that it was pointedly made with gaming in mind, specifically the plug-and-play culture that surrounds console gaming. As such, the PSVR is one of the easiest-to-set-up headsets on this list. 

\n

Essential reading: PS VR Bundle Review: A Whole New (Virtual) World

\n

What's more, it's also one of the most comfortable virtual reality devices on the market today. Looking like something straight out of Star Wars, the PSVR is ergonomically friendly in almost every possible way. From the way it shifts weight to the back of the head to the easy one-button release, the PSVR is leagues above the competition in comfort. 

And the best part? This sucker's got one of the absolute best content developers in the gaming world behind it. Already, Sony has some truly amazing games and experiences out on the PSVR. 

\n

The downside is that the PSVR doesn't have the same resolution or field of view that the Vive and Rift offer. However, it's a small price to pay for saving about $300. 

Note: If you're planning on buying a PSVR, make sure you already have or plan to buy a PlayStation camera. The PSVR requires the camera to operate. 

\n

Who's the PSVR For? 

\n

If you're a console elitist, or have a console and are looking to get a damn good virtual reality headset for a reasonable price, you can't go wrong with the PSVR -- or it's content lineup. 

\n

Specifications

\n
    \n
  • Display technology: OLED
  • \n
  • Resolution: 960x1080
  • \n
  • Refresh rate: 90hz
  • \n
  • Field of view: 100 degrees
  • \n
  • Connection: Tracking via the PlayStation camera
  • \n
  • Sound: 3D audio via headphone jack
  • \n
  • Controller input: Dualshock 4 controller of PlayStation Move
  • \n
\n

 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculusrift-consumer-ab731.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculusrift-consumer-ab731.jpg","type":"slide","id":"144677","description":"
Oculus Rift
\n

Rating: 4/5 (3 reviews)

\n

Price: $599.99 (for the headset); $789 (for the headset and controllers)

\n

Buy it on: Newegg

\n

Alright. So we're coming down in price (sort of), but we're not coming down in badassery. At the end of the day, the Oculus Rift is another amazingly cutting edge piece of virtual reality technology.

\n

Developed and manufactured by the geniuses over at Oculus VR, the Oculus just went on sale to the public back in the summer. And although it supports about half the number of games that the HTC Vive does (more than 250 to 106), the Oculus Rift is much easier to set up than the Vive; sports more ergonomically sound controllers; has better, crisper sound; has a greater field of view; and has a much sleeker overall design. 

\n

Who's the Oculus Rift For? 

\n

If you're keen on getting a relatively high-end virtual reality gaming experience -- without all the hassle of set-up -- you're going to want to seriously consider the quickly growing Oculus Rift. 

\n

What's more, with solid developer support and a recent acquisition by tech and social media giant Facebook, the future for the Rift doesn't look to just be a flash in the pan. 

\n

Specifications

\n
    \n
  • Display technology: Pen-tile OLED
  • \n
  • Resolution: 2160x1200
  • \n
  • Refresh rate: 90hz
  • \n
  • Field of view: 120 degrees
  • \n
  • Connection: HDMI 1.3; USB 3.0; USB 2.0
  • \n
  • Sound: Integrated 3D audio headphones
  • \n
  • Controller input: Xbox One game controller or Oculus Touch (sold separately)
  • \n
"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/t/c/htc-vive-22766.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/t/c/htc-vive-22766.jpg","type":"slide","id":"143930","description":"
HTC Vive
\n

Rating: 4/5 (39 reviews)

\n

Price: $799.99

\n

Buy it on: Newegg

\n

Developed by Valve, the makers of Half-Life 2 and Team Fortress, and manufactured by hardware giant HTC, the HTC Vive is a VR headset meant for near-total immersion. In other words, like the Oculus Rift (which we'll get to shortly), the Vive is built for serious virtual reality gaming. 

Since its unveiling in 2015, the Vive has won more than 22 awards for everything from innovation to design. What's more, it won Wareable's inaugural VR Headset of the Year Award just a few weeks ago, meaning its performance and design have a lot of people talking. 

\n

Who's the HTC Vive For? 

This one's for the serious virtual reality aficionado. Setting up the Vive can be tricky as it's a whole-room affair. Using more than 70 sensors to generate it's truly immersive virtual reality experience, the Vive is best played in an area that's at the very least 5 feet by 6.5 feet. That's not to mention that the light towers (the devices that track your real-world movements in a virtual space) cannot be more than 16ft apart -- and need to be at least 6ft in the air, pointing down into the play space ... 

\n

Still with us? 

\n

Ok, good. Because the trade-off is truly incredible. The HTC Vive is one of the absolute best VR headsets on the market today. It's the only VR headset to let you go full-room-scale and punch, kick and duck about a virtual space right out of the box. And the rendering capabilities of this bad boy are just off the charts. 

\n

So if you're serious about VR gaming (and diving into more than 200 games and virtual reality experiences), this is going to be a headset you're definitely going to want to check out. 

Specifications

\n
    \n
  • Display technology: Pen Tile OLED
  • \n
  • Resolution: 2160x1200
  • \n
  • Refresh rate: 90hz
  • \n
  • Field of view: 110 degrees
  • \n
  • Connection: 1x HDMI; 1x USB 3.0
  • \n
  • Sound: 3.5mm audio input jack
  • \n
  • Controller input: SteamVR wireless motion controllers
  • \n
"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/p/s/v/psvrhero-image-359a1.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/p/s/v/psvrhero-image-359a1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"144796","description":"

Let’s face it: Virtual reality is here to stay. From treating PTSD in veterans across the globe to helping architects remodel cityscapes and whisking tourists away to unbelievable virtual vacations, VR technology is quickly reinventing and reshaping our world – whether we like it or not.

\n

Needless to say, applications for the technology are steadily growing. In 2015, virtual reality technology earned more than $2 billion for companies worldwide, with that number set to increase to more than $5 billion in revenue in just two short years -- by 2018.

\n

One of the biggest markets for emerging VR technology is gaming (obviously). From Microsoft to Google to Sony, technology and gaming giants, as well as several indie powerhouses, are jumping on the paradigm-shifting bandwagon – and holding on tight.

Earlier this year, GameSkinny found out how gamers really feel about VR gaming (spoiler alert: They're really liking it).

\n

So what does that mean for you, fearless consumer? It means that virtual reality technology, and specifically virtual reality gaming, is only going to (keep) getting better in the months and years to come. Like a fine wine, most technology only gets better with age, which means if you have yet to buy one of the many virtual reality headsets currently on the market, you’re in luck. Not only are prices waning, but capabilities and experiences are getting better – and there’s more and more software coming into the market to support the cost of one of these bad boys, too.

\n

Essential reading: Tips for Building a VR Ready PC

\n

So without further ado, let’s strap in and take a look at the 7 best virtual reality headsets you can buy right now with your hard-earned cash, and still have some left over to buy some snazzy virtual reality games, too!

"}]]]>
Five Industry Figures That Will Make You Feel Unaccomplished https://www.gameskinny.com/54vzu/five-industry-figures-that-will-make-you-feel-unaccomplished https://www.gameskinny.com/54vzu/five-industry-figures-that-will-make-you-feel-unaccomplished Mon, 28 Nov 2016 03:00:01 -0500 Lampstradamus

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/9/5/2/9520dc2c45e35c402888ff86a945fbff-a10e7.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/9/5/2/9520dc2c45e35c402888ff86a945fbff-a10e7.png","type":"slide","id":"142536","description":"

Young or old, industry veteran or garage genius, the gaming industry has a whole slew of interesting industry figures.

\n

Some may develop games, some may write, some may invent or some may just sell, but they all have a part in this industry.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/p/a/l/palmer-cf1fe.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/p/a/l/palmer-cf1fe.png","type":"slide","id":"140702","description":"
Palmer Luckey
\n

Founder of the company Oculus VR and developer of the Oculus Rift, Palmer Luckey is recognized as one of the big pioneers in the VR world.

\n

Luckey created the original prototype for the Oculus at age 18 in his parents’ garage, and he would go on to sell his 6th generation unit as a DIY kit to fellow enthusiasts on Kickstarter. Later, Luckey ran Kickstarter campaign to fund the development of the Oculus Rift. The campaign would raise $2.4 million, or 974% of its original goal, cementing Luckey as the face of VR gaming.

\n

In 2015, Forbes magazine estimated his net worth to be $700 million.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/j/u/s/justin-matthew-davis-407c5.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/j/u/s/justin-matthew-davis-407c5.png","type":"slide","id":"140684","description":"
Justin Ma and Matthew Davis
\n

This duo not only founded the company Subset Games but also created the hit indie title FTL: Faster Than Light. Raising $200,000 dollars on Kickstarter to make FTL, the duo have won many awards for it since.

\n

Before Subset Games, both were former 2K China team member alongside Justin Ma. Meanwhile, Justin Ma was a games design consultant for 2K China, a junior games designer for 2K and a graphic designer for Blue Whale Studios.

\n

Games that he has previously worked on include: Bioshock 2, and Top Spin 4 Wii.

\n

The two would leave the 2K team to work on an indie game inspired by board games like X-Wing and Battlestar Galactica. Their game was named as a finalist at the Independent Games Festival China competition in 2011, after which interest in the game started picking up.

\n

The duo would eventually turn to Kickstarter to fund their game after realizing that the development time was longer than originally anticipated. They asked for a mere $10,000 and received $200,000.

\n

Their game would go on to receive critical acclaim and be regarded as a hit.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/j/o/h/john-graham-a5723.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/j/o/h/john-graham-a5723.png","type":"slide","id":"140661","description":"
John Graham
\n

Co-founder of the widely popular website Humble Bundle, John Graham's creation contributes to the video-game market by allowing users to buy bundles of miscellaneous games at whatever price they choose -- and then letting customers choose where their money goes, whether it be to charities or the developers.

\n

Graham is not only the co-founder of Humble Bundle, but he is also the founding member of the game developing studio Wolfire Games. He and the team developed various indie games over the years, many that would also find their ways onto Humble Bundle.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/b/2/fb2d6cc1317c9e9691feae3d37adb5c4-ded7f.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/b/2/fb2d6cc1317c9e9691feae3d37adb5c4-ded7f.png","type":"slide","id":"140631","description":"
Davey Wreden
\n

Co-founder of Galactic Cafe, Davey Wreden wrote and co-created the award-winning indie title, The Stanley Parablewhich has been praised for its brilliant and unconventional storytelling and writing.

\n

Wreden began working on his first game (which would be the first version of The Stanley Parable), at the end of his undergraduate course in film school. Soon afterward, he then started fiddling around with Valve's Source Engine (yes, the first version of The Stanley Parable was a Half-Life 2 mod).

The mod blew up online and became an overnight sensation. Wreden teamed up with William Pugh to form Galactic Cafe and released a high-definition version of The Stanley Parable only two years later.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/a/m/i/amir-rao-d2a0e.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/a/m/i/amir-rao-d2a0e.jpg","type":"slide","id":"140621","description":"
Amir Rao 
\n

Co-founder of Super Giant Games, Amir Rao has gone on to co-create two highly acclaimed and beloved games, Bastion and Transistor.

\n

Rao originally worked at Electronic Arts, where he was responsible for design on Command & Conquer 3: Tiberium Wars and Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3. In 2009, he left EA and formed Supergiant Games with his partner, Gavin Simon.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/n/y/c/nyc-office-0be56.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/n/y/c/nyc-office-0be56.jpg","type":"slide","id":"141447","description":"

When it comes to the gaming industry, there are many AAA developers and publishers that might come to mind. Whether it be Cliff Blieszinski, Peter Molyneux or Tim Schafer, there are many industry heavyweights who we regard as successes.

\n

However, there are always other industry figures who have made great products or done great things that we may overlook. 

\n

Here are five industry figures that you may or may not recognize -- but should definitely get the credit they're due.

"}]]]>
Nine Coolest Things That Happened in Gaming 2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/kgjea/nine-coolest-things-that-happened-in-gaming-2016 https://www.gameskinny.com/kgjea/nine-coolest-things-that-happened-in-gaming-2016 Sun, 27 Nov 2016 16:30:24 -0500 Lampstradamus

[{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/3/2/0/320620db2255fb42e27f77c2682e8d7b-089b9.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/3/2/0/320620db2255fb42e27f77c2682e8d7b-089b9.png","type":"slide","id":"142493","description":"

In 2016, many new things appeared and excited gamers, while many old things popped up out of their graves and surprised us. Some of these trends might continue into 2017 and some might not. Let's hope a majority do. 

\n

We can't predict everything that is going to happen, so we can just wait and enjoy what is to come. 

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-95fc6.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-95fc6.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142490","description":"
Second Lives for Old Games
\n

There are many games that try to make a mark on the field of gaming and sometimes, it just doesn't happen. Games fail to make a mark and simply disappear and die off. The fan bases for those games are often left without much else and have to move on. However, we saw something different happen this year: Evolve got a second life.

\n

Released back in 2015, Evolve was a highly hyped game but left many disappointed. The game had a big player base that died off a few weeks after its release, and the game was proclaimed dead by the gaming community. 

\n

But Evolve went free to play in 2016, giving it new life. Turtle Rock Studios opened the floodgates and tried to resurrect their dead game -- and it actually worked. There was a massive influx of new players wanting to try out Evolve as well as an influx of returning players wanting to see what was new.

\n

Though 2k is stopping production of the game even after the resurgence of interest, this little experiment shows us that dead games don't have to stay dead. Maybe developers could resurrect other old gems, too.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/f/i/n/final-fantasy-logo-4fe4b.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/f/i/n/final-fantasy-logo-4fe4b.png","type":"slide","id":"142487","description":"
"Development Hell" Games Releasing
\n

The only wait that seems as long as waiting for VR to become a thing is the eventual release of a "development hell" game. Several games that many gamers have been waiting years for are finally releasing (or have a release date).

The world will finally get their hands on games like Final Fantasy XV, The Last Guardian and Persona 5. Many gamers have been waiting for these games since the last generation of consoles and though Persona 5 is releasing in 2017, we have do (finally) a release date for it.

\n

The wait will finally be over.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/g/t/x/gtx1080car-678x452-e0b69.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/g/t/x/gtx1080car-678x452-e0b69.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142486","description":"
Nvidia Geforce 1000 Series
\n

Though this is more relevant for the PC gamer, the fact that Nvidia managed to develop and release an entirely new line of graphics cards is great. The Geforce 900 series released back in 2014, so the release of the 1000 series is a nice upgrade for those of us looking for new tech.

With the 1000 series being more affordable than Nvidia's Titan Xs, gamers can look forward to cards that won't completely break the bank. And even if you don't want to buy a 1000 series card, the 900 series of cards will obviously go down in price, since they are no longer the latest tech on the market.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-6bd76.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-6bd76.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142485","description":"
Cross-Platform Play
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Cross-platform play is something that many gamers have wanted for quite some time. From some wanting to crush players on other platforms to prove console superiority, to others just wanting to play with friends who own other platforms, cross-platform play is something that many gamers thought may never actually happen.

\n

But in 2016, it did. 

With Microsoft pushing integration between Windows 10 and Xbox One and with Rocket League opening up cross-platform play with PCs and consoles, the barriers between platforms are slowly but surely crumbling.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/b/f/bbf7ef9d6083d44dae11928cb11f2ea0-3206c.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/b/f/bbf7ef9d6083d44dae11928cb11f2ea0-3206c.png","type":"slide","id":"142484","description":"
Class Based Team Shooters
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From Overwatch to Paladins and Battleborn to Paragon, any gamer can see the interest in team shooters increased in 2016. After the release of the last really memorable team shooter, Team Fortress 2, there had been a drought of class-based team shooters. 

Though a couple of these games haven't been fully released (some are still in beta) and Battleborn having basically died, it can be seen that there's an emergence of interest in team shooters from gamers and developers alike.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-53ab1.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-53ab1.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142481","description":"
FPS Resurgence
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The first-person-shooter genre had been in sort of a rut for a while. With many gamers swapping genres, sticking to staples such as Counter-strike, or just downright bemoaning about the lack of innovation, the FPS genre was thought to be in decline.

So when several excellent FPS games released in 2016, everyone was surprised. DOOM surprised many gamers with its excellent single player campaign. Battlefield 1 excited players with its World War One setting. And TItanfall 2 gave gamers an interesting campaign, which built upon the polished gameplay from the first title.

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In a nutshell: 2016 has been a good year for the FPS genre.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculus-rift-matt-set-right-800x533-779c7.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/o/c/u/oculus-rift-matt-set-right-800x533-779c7.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142480","description":"
Virtual Reality Gaming
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Virtual reality is finally here. After decades of dreaming and waiting, virtual reality is finally in the hands of people. Though it may be more for enthusiasts at the moment, virtual reality and virtual reality gaming exists, and it isn't completely terrible.

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Of course, there are issues with virtual reality, but it is still young. From the pricier headsets and setups on the PC with the Vive and Rift, to the the first console headset in the PSVR and the affordable Gear VR and Google Cardboard, VR is here to stay -- and we can look back on 2016 as the year it really took off.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-8370c.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/h/e/a/header-8370c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"142479","description":"
Japan Embraces the PC
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For the longest time, if you wanted to play an English port of a Japanese game, you'd have to get it on a console. But since 2015 Japan has been porting more and more games to the PC.

With games such as Zero Time Dilemma, the Danganronpa series and God Eater making their way to the PC, some Japanese developers have showed that they understand that there is a market for their games on the PC and hopefully, other developers and publishers will see the same.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/p/o/k/pokemon-logo-778dd.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/p/o/k/pokemon-logo-778dd.png","type":"slide","id":"142478","description":"
Pokemon Go
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Arguably one of the most talked about games during the summer months, Pokemon Go released and took the world by storm. Anyone and everyone was talking about it. Everyone was writing about it. And everyone was playing Pokemon Go. Old players and new players all picked up their phones and installed the app, wandering the world to catch pokemon. Even if the fad has died down since, Pokemon Go left its mark.

"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/0/2/8/028237b02be91eed112d10d434fe9972-2a9d6.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/0/2/8/028237b02be91eed112d10d434fe9972-2a9d6.png","type":"slide","id":"142477","description":"

The gaming industry is always evolving and changing as the years go on. Trends always change and technology is always being invented. And despite how some people may say that the gaming industry hasn't changed or that it is in a rut, there are clear signs that great things have been happening and that the industry is trending up.

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Here are 9 of the coolest things that happened in gaming in 2016.

"}]]]>
The Future of the Arcade Racer https://www.gameskinny.com/g6brq/the-future-of-the-arcade-racer https://www.gameskinny.com/g6brq/the-future-of-the-arcade-racer Mon, 21 Nov 2016 02:00:01 -0500 Caio Sampaio

We have become accustomed to witnessing photorealistic graphics, experiencing accurate physics and exploring immersive universes in racing games. This; however, has not always been the case. It all started in 1974, when players entertained themselves standing in front of an arcade machine.

The racing genre has come a long from its conception, to its current state, but it is still possible to have fun with arcade racing games and through the use of Virtual Reality (VR), they can make their way back to the mainstream audience.  And we will tell you how.

In the 70s and 80s, there were many reasons which drew players to arcades, even after home consoles were introduced in the market. One of them was the cost. Players could pay a small fee, in order to have a short burst of entertainment. In the eyes of many, this made more financial sense than purchasing a video game system to play at home.

As technology evolved; however, consoles started to become more sophisticated and their cost decreased, becoming more accessible to the average customer.  Opting to own a console became a consensus among gamers, who performed a mass exodus from the arcades, to their living rooms.

Nowadays, arcade racing games have become a minority in this industry, but as technology continues to move forward, history may repeat itself and benefit the arcade racing genre.

While the top VR sets used in gaming remain expensive to the average crowd, many gamers crave for the opportunity to immerse themselves in virtual worlds, but cannot afford to do so. This is the opportunity arcade racing games must grasp, in order to ensure their survival.

If a developer makes the commitment of building an arcade racing game with VR support, the individuals who cannot afford to have this technology at home will head back to the arcade, in order to dive into a virtual world.

Developing this product; however, would not be cheap and would require significant resources, but as the novelty of VR is introduced and players are able to experience it, with a small cost, the profit will be made through the scale of the sales. Many people paying a small fee, equals a big profit, which as of now, is the opposite of the logic applied in the VR market, as developers sell their products with a big price tag, to a limited audience -- think microtransactions in many of the biggest games, in 2015 League of Legends earnt a massive $1.6 billion even if it's free to play.

There is; however, a limited time window to put this plan in motion. The costs of Virtual Reality will decrease over the next few years and it will not take long before it becomes financially accessible to a mass audience. By the time this happens, the opportunity to reinvent arcade racing games will have been lost, as people will not go to the arcades, in order to experience VR, if they can do this in the comfort of their homes.

We shall conclude; therefore, that the future of arcade racing games hangs in a limbo state. It is possible to reinvent the genre and bring it back to mainstream relevance, but this will take an investment and above all, an innovative drive from a developer who is willing to take the risk.

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Will VR Ever Make the Jump to eSports? https://www.gameskinny.com/9t211/will-vr-ever-make-the-jump-to-esports https://www.gameskinny.com/9t211/will-vr-ever-make-the-jump-to-esports Sun, 20 Nov 2016 08:00:01 -0500 Lydia M

Virtual reality has really blown up in the past year. Nowadays, with cell phone technology you can even create a cardboard headset, making it simpler than ever to immerse yourself into a VR experience. As quickly as the technology develops, the uses of virtual reality expand.

VR really stepped into gaming with the Oculus Rift around 2014, which was then bought by Facebook. After that, other major companies followed suit, developing their own VR rigs to adapt to gamers. With that, the potential of virtual reality eSports has started to stir. But can VR succeed in the rapidly evolving community of eSports?

It most certainly will try.

Virtuix has already created their own virtual reality system, known as ‘Omni’, going beyond just the headset and including an actual motion platform the player can walk on, which reflects the in-game environments.

They displayed their active VR experience at Consumer Electronics Show 2016 in Las Vegas and even held an FPS tournament.

The Omni is such a huge setup and while they’re available for pre-order, you would be lucky to snag one yourself.

This brings up one of the major conflicts with virtual reality and eSports: cost. As they are starting to become more and more popular, the price of the headsets or full setups are still a bit too steep for casual consumption

If VR rigs are going to be used in eSports, players need to be able to practice with them right? Dropping huge amounts of money for the VR rig alone is unlikely for a casual gamer to pick up and try competitively.

Right now, virtual reality headsets for gamers are more of a parlor trick, like the Kinect or PlayStation Eye. They’re cool to have for a few games, but not really in high demand for gamers. You’ll probably still start seeing them in every other living room (especially in the holiday season), but it’s doubtful that there will be enough buy-in by gamers that would consider VR in eSport tournaments.

While it’s not really practical that VR could be used for eSports players anytime soon, there is a good chance companies will focus more on using the technology to give fans an immersive experience during tournaments and events.

Back in the summer, Valve introduced the Dota VR Hub for users to watch live matches, replays and streams in their VR Theater from the comfort of their own home. This gave viewers a completely new experience for watching professional Dota 2. The feature is still available and can be used through your Steam account, as long as you already own a VR headset. 

This weekend, ESL and SLIVER.tv provided a similar feature at Intel Extreme Masters: Oakland for CS:GO and League of Legends. Fans were able to watch both competitions with a 360-degree view, as well as player and bird's eye perspectives. Viewers were even able to see in-game stats as they watched. The service was free and fans were able to watch it on their smartphone, SLIVER.tv or VR headset through SLIVER.tv’s platform.

This specific feature for IEM was good, in theory, but the execution was less than stellar. The quality was fairly low on the website version, and overlaying the first-person view over the bird’s eye view was less than appealing. Viewers were also unable to select anything other than your 360-view, as the map location changed based on where players were located.

Overall, it’s more likely virtual reality in eSports will excel further in relation to fans more than the players. There are already big companies behind the technology and as eSports grows, so will the technology with it. 

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Neptune Flux: A Short Journey in the Depths of the Sea https://www.gameskinny.com/0anyg/neptune-flux-a-short-journey-in-the-depths-of-the-sea https://www.gameskinny.com/0anyg/neptune-flux-a-short-journey-in-the-depths-of-the-sea Thu, 17 Nov 2016 02:00:02 -0500 Justin Michael

In the world of games development, there are a handful of important factors to take into consideration when making a game. In my personal opinion, a good game is one with solid game mechanics, a good story, and a sense of fulfillment as I interact with the game world.

Neptune Flux, the first release of Zoxide Games, puts you at the helm of a submersible working to build a habitat for colonization after the surface of the world became uninhabitable.

Neptune Flux pirate shipwreck

The Good

Overall, this is a fun, story-driven game. The graphics for the game are fairly good quality on the PC so I can only imagine how much more immersive it would be on a VR headset. The voice acting is also well done, which is important for a game based around a story-driven narrative.

Additionally, the music for this game was spot on. It was the right levels of relaxing and not so intense that it took my focus away from the exploration aspect of the game.

The Improvements

Audio - Some of the sound effects are a bit on the loud side, like the sonar ping. After awhile, it becomes kind of a nuisance which isn't good for something you're going to be using for the majority of your play.

Controls - Using the controls was a bit of trial and error since there was no mapping for controls. They felt a bit on the clunky side and  the player's field of view makes the player feel like they are smaller than they actually are which leads to you bumping into your surroundings from time to time.

Gameplay - The game feels short, very short. Even after exploring all around I had finished the game in just under 1.5 hours. I feel like the story was really rushed and there could have been some more to it. Exploration felt very concentrated as you had limited battery power for your vessel so you couldn't stray too far from your base of operations.

Price - Coming in at a base price of $14.99 I can't recommend this game to other people. It simply doesn't have the substance to command that price point. Now, if there were to be additional content added to the game in the future then I may reconsider but a more appropriate price, in my opinion, would be no more than $7.99.

Final Verdict

Overall this game was an enjoyable, albeit brief adventure. While not, in my opinion, worth the $15 asking price it is still a good game and has the potential to be a truly great adventure and exploration title with the addition of more content.

Pros

  • Quality voice acting
  • Immersive feeling
  • Interesting story concept

Cons

  • Very short play time
  • Feels rushed
  • Not a $15 title

If you're interested in playing you can find the game on the Steam marketplace and it will be coming to PlayStation 4 sometime early 2017.

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Is VR a Reset of Gaming History? https://www.gameskinny.com/h7ahe/is-vr-a-reset-of-gaming-history https://www.gameskinny.com/h7ahe/is-vr-a-reset-of-gaming-history Wed, 26 Oct 2016 06:00:01 -0400 Unclepulky

For all the complaining that gamers seem to do about gimmicks getting in the way of quality games, they never seem to stop being won over by them during their early days. Motion controls? We originally loved them! All of Nintendo's silly peripherals? We loved them too! Virtual reality? Well, huh, I suppose no one really liked that back in the 90's. The hype surrounding new VR innovations is immense... but have we been down this road before?

The concept of virtual reality originated in the 1935 short story, "Pygmalion's Spectacles" by Stanley G. Weinbaum. This story contained a set of goggles which, when equipped, allowed people to experience fictional events.

Since then, different takes on virtual reality have appeared throughout an abundance of different books, movies, and essentially every other form of media. And with each appearance of it, our appetite just got more wet.

Come 1995, and Nintendo released their newest "portable" system, the Virtual Boy. Supposedly, this was the next big step for gaming, and we were going to be more immersed than ever.

This did not end up happening.

 

The Virtual Boy was a joke in 1995, and it's a joke now. With barely any games, hideous black and red visuals, a design which made it hard to use, and the ability to cause eye strain if used for more than about 20 minutes at a time, it's known in the gaming community as one of the worst systems of all time.

Now, while no one ended up liking the thing once it came out, people were super excited about it beforehand. And while comparing modern VR devices to the Virtual Boy is like comparing Theodore Roosevelt to Donald Trump, the possibility remains that we're setting ourselves up for another let down.

The Vive, the Oculus Rift, the Playstation VR, all incredibly well made devices. But soon, like with all gimmicks, the novelty will fade away, and the systems will need quality games to support them, especially given some of their radically high price tags. And so far, for the most part, it doesn't look like developers are focusing as much on the games, as much as what cool things they can do with their device. 

 

And if we don't end up getting these games, the industry will have spent several years treading ground it already had two decades ago.

Regarding the games, there's also a chance that what ends up being done with them will be reminiscent of things we've seen before. While the Virtual Boy was a complete flop, with games that barely utilized VR, we've had quality VR games in arcades for many years. In fact, a lot of what modern VR devices offer are just perfected features of certain arcade games, mainly rail shooters.

So what could be done to keep things fresh? Well, a VR game set in a 2D environment would be something different. Maybe it could even be a little more cartoonish than other games on the platform. There's no law that says that all VR games have to contain realism, especially since at their core, video games are, and always will be, a form of escapism.

How crazy would Cuphead be in VR?

Are you a fan of any VR devices? Which one is your favorite? And do you think that VR is just a reset of gaming history? Let me know in the comments!

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Caution! VR Is Going Viral: Cases of Ocular Herpes are Spreading from "Try VR" Booths at Conventions https://www.gameskinny.com/if5lv/caution-vr-is-going-viral-cases-of-ocular-herpes-are-spreading-from-try-vr-booths-at-conventions https://www.gameskinny.com/if5lv/caution-vr-is-going-viral-cases-of-ocular-herpes-are-spreading-from-try-vr-booths-at-conventions Mon, 24 Oct 2016 17:36:43 -0400 Kris Cornelisse (Delfeir)

Virtual Reality headsets are becoming increasingly available, and the prospective applications for video games have certainly seen some interesting developments. However, those wishing to test the new technology at public conventions may be doing so at their own risk -- stories are starting to surface of ocular herpes being spread through the headsets.

The news comes from a series of Twitter DMs that passed between a few devs. The following conversation was posted by YouTuber Drift0r on his Twitter account, who made the devs involved anonymous to protect their privacy.

The messages above speak for themselves. Someone's already contracted it, it's spreading, and it's gross.

Given the anonymous nature of the post, we can't 100% verify that this is legit until someone comes forward with more evidence. But we have to admit...it's not that far-fetched.

Almost all major gaming conventions nowadays have Try VR booths with all three major devices (Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR) frequently on display. With thousands of people passing through the booths on a daily basis and trying on the headsets, it's little surprise that such infections can spread.

We caution anyone traveling to these conventions to utilize these devices at their own risk. If you believe you have a transmissible condition, please consider avoiding these booths for the benefit of others. Further information on ocular herpes including warning signs and symptoms is readily available.

With luck, it'll be this news that spreads rather than the infections -- and VR booths will start taking further precautions for disinfecting headsets soon. Because it's all fun and games...until someone gets herpes. 

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The 9 Best VR Jump Scares https://www.gameskinny.com/6cu4q/the-9-best-vr-jump-scares https://www.gameskinny.com/6cu4q/the-9-best-vr-jump-scares Mon, 17 Oct 2016 06:00:02 -0400 Ty Arthur

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For those without VR headsets, an honorable mention for jump scares you can try out is the very cheap but also very highly rated Sophie's Curse.

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At this point there's something like 30 pages of indie virtual reality games on Steam, and a pretty good portion of those are horror, so if you want jump scares, there's more than enough to be had. What did you think of our list, and what VR games have been scaring the pants off you?

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My question though, is when are the FNAF games going to get Oculus Rift or HTC Vive support? It's a match made in animatronic jump scare heaven!

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Slender The Arrival: Screen Spasms

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Seeing the screen flip out is one thing on a monitor, but it's another when hooked up to VR and that's your whole field of vision. When things start to get to the real goods in this take on the Slenderman urban legend, the screen goes nuts and glitches out periodically, offering some unexpected scares even before anything starts chasing you.

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"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/e/m/i/emily-72908.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/e/m/i/emily-72908.jpg","type":"slide","id":"136339","description":"

Emily Wants To Play: Giggles And Appearances

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Just take a look at that cover image up there: why are both dolls and little girls so inherently terrifying?

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The little girl laughs in the background are almost their own jump scare, but this one's chock full of jump-out-of-your-seat frights when the lights pop off and the little girl appears just where you least expect.

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"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/m/o/n/monstrum-7eb0c.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/m/o/n/monstrum-7eb0c.jpg","type":"slide","id":"136338","description":"

Monstrum: Creature Breaks Down The Door

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Finally changing up the scenery, this VR game moves from the creepy abandoned house to a creepy abandoned ship... except maybe it's not so abandoned.

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There's lots of opportunities for great jump scares here while hiding from the monstrous creatures onboard, and there's more than one monster to worry about, each with different tactics. Sometimes hiding from them doesn't work out so well either, like when a door gets broken down and messy death ensues.

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"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/b/o/o/boogey-57c6e.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/b/o/o/boogey-57c6e.png","type":"slide","id":"136337","description":"

Boogeyman: Boogeyman Leaps From The Window

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This one takes the standard fear anyone has of being alone in a dark room at night and turns it into a full video game.

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As you'd imagine, there's a boogeyman lurking in all those typical hiding places: up in the vents, under the bed, behind the closet door, and in one case that really seems to affect players, just outside the bedroom window.

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While there's lots of fun to be had watching teens be terrified by the boogeyman, the most interesting part might be the idle musings such as “Where are this kid's parents?” and "This is some next level terror, although I mean, I AM on the second level."

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"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/7/3/5/7358014c5c77a5a.png","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/7/3/5/7358014c5c77a5a.png","type":"slide","id":"136334","description":"

Terrorift: Screaming Dead Girl Pops Out Of A Book

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Hearing animal sounds in the background and a heartbeat stopping when something bad's about to go down creates a great sense of dread in this VR title. But all that's just leading up to the jump scare.

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Now I'm going to let you in on a secret that probably won't endear me to many of you: I'm not actually a big fan of the Markiplier clips. Yeah, I know, he's definitely not the most obnoxious YouTuber out there, but I still don't see the appeal of watching him play games and pretend to be scared.

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That being said, Markiplier's reaction to this jump scare in particular is worth seeing. Even though he knows its coming, it still effects him enough that he literally knocks the Oculus Rift headset off his head!

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"},{"image":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_360,q_80,w_640/v1/gameskinnyc/a/l/i/alienisolation-c131a.jpg","thumb":"http://res.cloudinary.com/lmn/image/upload/c_limit,e_sharpen:150,f_auto,fl_lossy,h_85,q_80,w_97/v1/gameskinnyc/a/l/i/alienisolation-c131a.jpg","type":"slide","id":"136331","description":"

Alien Isolation: Any Time The Alien Jumps At You

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If ever there were games just tailor made for VR, it's the defenseless horror titles like Outlast or Alien: Isolation that don't let you kill the creature stalking your helpless character.

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This new take on the Alien franchise is legitimately scary on its own, but in VR the game is taken to a heart-pounding level, between both the spot-on sound and the knowledge of impending xeno death.

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There honestly should be an extra warning label above and beyond the standard disclaimer on stuff like this for people with heart conditions. Just take a look at the reaction video below, where the most common thing players say is “Shit, shit, shit, shit shit, shit!”

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Dead Secret: Figure Appears In The Mirror

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While VR horror takes its first fledgling steps, there's going to be a lot of exploring houses, turning old locks, and picking up random objects, which is what's on display with Dead Secret.

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It feels a bit like those old PS1 days of first discovering horror (think Clock Tower or the first Resident Evil). But there's plenty of sudden shocks, like seeing a masked and covered figure appear in a mirror – guaranteed to get a real life jump from a virtual scare.

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Paranormal Activity: Ghost Appearance

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Yep, the Paranormal Activity universe is officially invading VR, and its got scares galore. A jump scare involving a mirror breaking in the bathroom while looking for a key is particularly effective, because you don't see it coming and it really sets the tone.

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The jump scare that has everyone screaming most though is the appearance of a ghostly girl figure near the staircase, even causing one player to completely fall over and start bawling. Favorite player quotes: “I don't feel like I'm in a safe space” and “I just really need the lord Jesus right now.

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The clip below also showcases how VR still has some issues to overcome, maybe best summed up when a Paranormal Activity pre-alpha player tries to lean on a table that doesn't exist.

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Dreadhalls: Monstrosities Looming In The Darkness

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One of the earlier Oculus Rift horror games, this one unceremoniously plops you in a dungeon populated with all sorts of nasty beasties. The horror comes from odd things suddenly appearing where they weren't just a moment before when you turn your head.

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Whether is a winged gargoyle statue, creepy long haired ghost girl, or demonic hulking beast, there's a metric ton of excellent jump scares when something appears just out of the corner of your eye.

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Has there ever been a gaming device more tailor-made for scares than VR? Curiously, the actual developers of VR devices aren't actually keen on the idea. Earlier this year Palmer Luckey from Oculus specifically commented on a Reddit AMA session that “...we are strongly discouraging developers from using jump scares.

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That might make sense from a fiscal standpoint - no hardware company wants to be liable for that one person who literally has a heart attack playing a scary game, but for the rest of us, VR is all the about the horror.

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There are plenty of great ways to create legitimate dread in a player through VR's very immersive interface, from the sounds of doors opening and closing behind you to the much-maligned but reliably utilized jump scare.

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Here we're rounding up 9 of the best VR jump scares currently available. Many of these videos have very NSFW imagery and language. so watch at your own risk!

"}]]]>
Tactera Takes Virtual Gaming to a Whole New Level https://www.gameskinny.com/ylrzf/tactera-takes-virtual-gaming-to-a-whole-new-level https://www.gameskinny.com/ylrzf/tactera-takes-virtual-gaming-to-a-whole-new-level Mon, 26 Sep 2016 10:00:01 -0400 Vinnie Doobs

If you are ready to take gaming to the next step by entering into the world of simulated reality, then Tactera is a game to sink your teeth into. Tactera is a strategy game designed for the VR Gear and Oculus Rift. Here you control a simulated army where you try to overpower, outflank, and outmaneuver your opponent. This game puts your logic and strategy-making skills to the test.  It offers different types of game modes like campaign and online competition.

What’s great about this game is the update that its designer, E. McNeill has provided in order to further enhance the VR gaming experience. It used to be that Tactera had a very elementary approach to strategy in gaming. If you immerse yourself in Tactera for the second time, you will notice that the game has made significant improvements on its artificial intelligence for the benefit of single and multiplayers alike. The multiplayer components provide new perspectives on strategy and logistics. For example, bases can now be upgraded and units can be redirected after deployment.

More battle units and campaign modes are also added for variety. There are now 9 maps to choose from to engage in strategic battles. The multiplayer with head-to-head mode is the best update for this game as you can play with other players and see them in virtual reality across the gaming table.

To kick-start, you get in there, dip yourself on strategic planning and draw up your own tactics. The destination of your military decisions matters. Every move is crucial when you enter enemy lines where battle commands await. Like real battles from history, you win some and you lose some, and it is always wise to pick your battles. This game encourages you to become both doer and thinker to create brilliant strategies.

Tactera shows you statistical probabilities that will help you plan your moves. Each battle displays percentages of winning possibilities and a chance to select 3 out of 12 potential units. Your miniature tanks and planes also have corresponding ratings in speed, power, payload, among others. You can think of them as moving Top Trump cards. It sounds intimidating at the beginning, but if you distribute your units strategically, you’ll be able to take control of the battle and will soon find yourself taking over enemy territories. There’s a sort of "Art of War" mentality that goes into it.

As for mobility, expect to move your neck a lot here and there since it is what you are going to use as a pointing tool. As a VR game, Tactera operates on a gaze-based selection, and it proves to be effective this way. In virtual reality, gaze-based techniques might be used as a viable alternative for gamers who choose not to use a mouse.

Tactera is a straightforward military strategy game that doesn’t bother with back stories or an angst-ridden protagonist. Here, you take the center stage as you step in and control your miniature resources, guided by statistics and your own judgment. With its recent upgrades to provide better and improved VR gaming experience, it's definitely a must try.

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Nvidia Releases Source Code for VR Funhouse https://www.gameskinny.com/aorgq/nvidia-releases-source-code-for-vr-funhouse https://www.gameskinny.com/aorgq/nvidia-releases-source-code-for-vr-funhouse Mon, 05 Sep 2016 00:38:52 -0400 Jeremy "Digit" Brown

As one of the premiere tech demos of the HTC Vive, Nvidia released a free game on Steam called the Nvidia VR Funhouse. From the start, Nvidia has stated that they would release the source code for the project allowing the modding community to make some impressive ideas for themselves. Now, it's finally here.

Nvidia is also releasing five of their own mods to get the ball rolling. Their creations are mostly for visual purposes, but are imaginative in their own respective ways. Big Top covers your carnival with one big circus tent. Great Moles of Fire engulfs the rodent boxers in flames, and Super Whack-A-Mole allows players to essentially play Whack-a-Mole but in 360 degree movement. 

According to the GeForce blog, Nvidia has always intended to make this software open source.

"NVIDIA VR Funhouse will be open sourced, so developers, artists and enthusiasts can learn from our work to make their own, compelling experiences even better.”

Nvidia VR Funhouse is free and available now on Steam, and the VR Funhouse Mod Kit can be reached via the Epic Games launcher in the Modding tab.

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Ubisoft unveils three games in VR lineup https://www.gameskinny.com/j5yls/ubisoft-unveils-three-games-in-vr-lineup https://www.gameskinny.com/j5yls/ubisoft-unveils-three-games-in-vr-lineup Wed, 24 Aug 2016 14:19:04 -0400 LoganKrum

The next few months will be packed with virtual reality from Ubisoft. The developing company revealed its upcoming VR lineup at Gamescom last week, showcasing titles like Eagle Flight, Star Trek: Bridge Crew, and Werewolves Within.

Eagle Flight allows players to soar through the skies of a post-apocalyptic Paris from the perspective of the titular bird. The game was developed by FunHouse and is playable in single and multiplayer modes, the latter of which allows players to defend territory in aerial combat.

The game will be released to Oculus Rift October 18, PlayStationVR November 8 and HTC Vive December 20

Players will command the U.S.S. Aegis starship in Star Trek: Bridge Crew. The game was designed specifically for VR to allow players to immerse themselves in the unique Star Trek universe. The player is sent to explore an unexplored area of space known as The Trench, where all of the player’s choices will have an impact.

The game will be released to all three VR stations November 29.

Protect the village and discover the true werewolf with Werewolf Within. The multiplayer games assigns each of the 5-8 players a special role as they vote who to kill in their quest to eliminate werewolves from the medieval village. Similar to the card game One Night Ultimate Werewolf, the game will submerge players in the virtual village as they try to survive the vote, and the night.

Werewolf Within will be released to all major VR stations December 6.

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Announced Intel VR headset promises new features https://www.gameskinny.com/51r9f/announced-intel-vr-headset-promises-new-features https://www.gameskinny.com/51r9f/announced-intel-vr-headset-promises-new-features Tue, 16 Aug 2016 18:09:36 -0400 LoganKrum

Intel Corporation has developed its own virtual reality headset with key features that other VR gadgets may not offer yet. The company, known for its chip technology, is joining the ranks of numerous other technologically based companies to invest in VR technologies.

Called Project Alloy, the headset will feature front-facing 3D camera technology known as RealSense which will allow the user to see physical objects nearby while in use. It will also support the use of hand gestures as information input, as opposed to physical controllers. 

The headset also boasts the feature of not needing to be connected to a computer in order to operate. This could give it an advantage over the Oculus Rift, which requires a connection.

Project Alloy may be Intel’s shot at regaining some market dominance it once held. Once a spearheading company in computer technology, the company’s profits gradually dropped once other companies caught up to it technologically. In this year’s second quarter the company’s profits fell 51%, and it announced a staff layoff of 12,000 by the second half of 2017.

With VR a growing trend projected to explode into the market soon, Project Alloy’s features could set it apart from its competition.

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Are the Oculus Touch controls finally coming? https://www.gameskinny.com/jzrd5/are-the-oculus-touch-controls-finally-coming https://www.gameskinny.com/jzrd5/are-the-oculus-touch-controls-finally-coming Sun, 07 Aug 2016 14:10:20 -0400 LoganKrum

Oculus has continually promised we would see a 2016 release date for Oculus Touch, its handlebar-like physical controllers that can further immerse users in a virtual world. Announced more than a year ago, the company has already pushed back its release from the first half of 2016 to the second half and there’s still no definitive proof it will hit shelves this year, despite the company’s word and more than 30 games announced said to utilize the controls.

Until now, perhaps. Oculus said they would talk about Touch at the upcoming Oculus Connect 3 Conference, scheduled for October 5-7. Even if the wording is as vague as having “lots more to share about Touch,” this is the first time we have a definitive timeline relating to the controls.

An official announcement and possible pre-order opening in October could put the machine on target for a winter launch. This is further corroborated by an image that appeared on Reddit from poster ThatVRGuy, which showcases a mockup of the controls and advertises a winter 2016 release date. The image was verified to be real by Tom’s Hardware.

A winter release makes sense as a popular release time for video games to coincide with the holidays. An upcoming game Ripcoil, to be released in December, is said to future use of the Touch controllers. While this is all speculation, many signs point to a winter release for the controls.

In July, new buttons for the controls were revealed, showcasing a new ‘Enter’ button, which essentially acts as a Start button on other common controllers. It will also provide both buffered and non-buffered haptic feedback, which means the vibration effects have the capability of changing rapidly.

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Tips for building a VR-ready PC without going insane or over budget https://www.gameskinny.com/j6178/tips-for-building-a-vr-ready-pc-without-going-insane-or-over-budget https://www.gameskinny.com/j6178/tips-for-building-a-vr-ready-pc-without-going-insane-or-over-budget Sat, 30 Jul 2016 15:25:41 -0400 RobotsFightingDinosaurs

It's the future. Virtual reality is finally, thankfully, here. Both the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive have launched, and each has (so far) delivered on their promises to create immersive, amazing experiences. But you wouldn't know anything about that, because you, like most people today, don't have a PC beefy enough to support VR technology.

Well, never fear. GameSkinny is here to help teach you how to build a VR ready PC on a budget, even if you've never built your own desktop before. Believe it or not, it's pretty simple.

Get familiar with the process

Before diving in and investing in components, it is helpful to scan over a few general PC-building videos and articles to get comfortable with the process if you have never done this before. 

This video by Easypcbuilder is very helpful, as is this article by PCWorld. It's important to remember that the process of building a virtual reality-ready PC is identical to the process of building any other PC, you'll just be working with more powerful (and expensive) components. 

Of course, you aren't putting this into action just yet, but it's nice to see firsthand that putting together a computer really isn't that hard. It's pretty much just Lego for adults.

Budget

We said a VR PC could be cheap. Well, that's only half true. Yes, you don't need to spend $1000 to build a PC fit to play virtual reality games, but you will be spending a not-insignificant-amount of money to put together a computer with the necessary horsepower. It's important to remember that playing a game in VR requires your computer to render the game twice, at relatively high graphical settings. It's a tough task.

Most entry-level VR builds cost between 700 and 900 dollars (not including the VR hardware itself) depending on whether or not certain components are on sale. This may not sound key, but it is. Building a computer is always a relatively expensive project, but money can be saved by shopping around. Amazon and Newegg both have regular sales on PC components, so make sure you're getting the lowest price by looking around. We also recommend using a browser extension like Honey to ensure that you get the full benefit of any active promo codes or discounts.

Once that's done, it's time to be realistic. What can you afford? What can't you afford? Set down a realistic budget for your build at the beginning, and it will make building your virtual reality-ready PC a lot easier in the long run. Just know that you'll probably go over budget in the end.

Know What You Need

If you've built a PC before, you've likely heard of Logical Increments. If you haven't, allow us to introduce you. The site features example builds for everything from budget PCs to monstrous rigs that cost thousands of dollars, and they check each build to make sure that all the components are compatible with each other, which can save first-time PC builders from costly mistakes. It is a near-essential resource for people wondering how to build a PC, and they even have a buying guide for folks wanting to know how to build a VR-ready PC.

Having said that, before you go adding everything Logical Increments lists on their site into your shopping cart, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.

Buy a static wristband

We'll say it again: buy a static wristband. We'll be dealing with expensive components, and a single static discharge can irreparably ruin them. If your floor is carpeted, or if there is any fabric around you as you are building the PC, there's a pretty high risk that static will build up. We don't want that charge to find the computer.

Personally, when I built my PC, I used this band, made by Belkin. It was cheap, and if nothing else, it gave me piece of mind. All you have to do is clip the clamp to something metal-- usually the case of the computer, and it will dispel any static charge that might build up on your body.

Do not skimp on your CPU

There are certainly areas of any VR-ready PC build in which you can skimp a bit. The CPU is not one of them. You're going to need something with at least a quad-core processor here to keep up with these games, so resign yourself to spending a bit more money. If you are going with a motherboard and build that supports Intel chips, the new Intel i5-6500 isn't super expensive, and is widely recommended. If you're planning an AMD build, anything at or above the level of the FX-6350 processor should work, but we'd recommend spending a bit more to get an 8-core processor like the FX-9370 to future-proof the build somewhat.

Do not skimp on your video card either

Like the CPU, your video card is an integral part of this build, since, as we have said above, it'll pretty much have to render a game twice in order to display it in VR. You'll be spending a bit of money here as well, so be prepared. For a budget build, the RX 480 will handle most VR apps and games at an attractive price point, but we'd also recommend you consider the R9 390x, which is able to run most VR games at high or very high settings while maintaining a constant frame rate.

Other necessities

For any VR build, you'll need 8GB RAM at the very least, so a motherboard that can accommodate that is necessary as well. You'll also need to make sure that your motherboard has plentiful USB ports (2.0, 3.0, and 3.1) so that you can plug your headset in. 

Areas to save money

There are a lot of necessities for a VR build, but there are definitely places where you can save some cash here and there. Storage is a biggie, as a solid-state drive is not absolutely necessary for this build, although the added reliability and piece of mind might make springing for one worth it. In addition, if you're focusing mostly on VR, a nice monitor isn't really that necessary either. 

Plan for the headset you want

You might think that this VR build will be compatible with all the headsets currently on the market, and to be honest, you'd probably be more or less right, but there are definitely a few differences between them that you'll need to be aware of. You can find the full breakdown here, but in general, you should know that if you plan to buy the Oculus Rift, you'll need more open USB ports than you will if you're planning on buying the Vive, while prospective Vive buyers will likely need to ensure that they have the required space to set up the sensors wherever they choose to put their computer.

Ensure that all your parts are compatible

If you do choose to go a bit off-script with your VR build, be sure to visit PCPartPicker. This is another invaluable resource for both novice and experienced PC builders, as it allows you not only to keep track of the components you have picked for your PC, but also to ensure that each component is compatible with every other one. There's nothing worse than starting a build only to realize that your components don't fit.

Once you have all of your parts picked out, add each to PC Part Picker to ensure compatibility. Screenshot the page, and file it away for the next step.

Buy smart

Yup. I know you were dreading this step, but depending on how patient you are, you can save hundreds of dollars. Striking at the right moment is key for people looking to truly build a VR rig on the cheap. If you can, try to spread out the time at which you buy your components, waiting for deep sales and discounts across sites instead of buying everything all at once.

This truly can make a huge difference. You'll be buying many components -- cases, cables, hard drives, enclosures, etc. -- and saving 10 to 20 dollars on each really adds up in the end. So be patient and you might even end up under budget!

Before you build...

At this point, you're almost done. Believe it or not, the hard part is over and soon you'll be part of the VR community. There are just a few things to keep in mind before you actually start piecing these components together.

First, watch that video up there one more time, and read through any how-to-guides in preparation. Building a computer isn't really that hard, but mistakes can be costly.

The first thing you should do is put on that goofy looking static bracelet and clamp it to something metal to ground yourself. Then, clear out a space to assemble your computer. Again, to avoid static, you really shouldn't be working on carpet-- hardwood is best. Then, just follow the directions in your favorite PC building guide, and you should be all set to experience the wild world of virtual reality. 

Well, that is, assuming you still have some money left to buy the headset!

Do you have any suggestions for building a virtual reality-ready PC? Let us know in the comments!

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When Can You Play Dirt Rally on Oculus Rift? https://www.gameskinny.com/129vz/when-can-you-play-dirt-rally-on-oculus-rift https://www.gameskinny.com/129vz/when-can-you-play-dirt-rally-on-oculus-rift Fri, 08 Jul 2016 04:27:38 -0400 Joe Passantino

Good news for fans of rallying and virtual reality: The official Dirt Rally website has announced that the game will debut on Oculus Rift on July 11.

You can view a trailer for the new platform addition above.

While VR connoisseurs will be able to access the game via the Oculus Store, developer Codemasters has not forgotten about its PC loyalists. Players who have already purchased the game for Windows will also receive an update on the 11th.

This comes just over three months after Codemasters released Dirt Rally for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, as well as eight months following its initial PC release. The game was well received, with a score of 86 on Metacritic. While you await your VR rallying fix, you can check out what GameSkinny thought of the game's console release.

Are you excited to play Dirt Rally on Oculus? Will you be sticking to the PC version? Let us know in the comments below!

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