Oculus Go, Mirage Solo, and Vive Focus Standalone Headsets Compared

Standalone VR headsets represent a new headset segment that sits somewhere between smartphone-based VR devices, and tethered, high-end VR systems, while offering some notable advantages over both. In this article we compare three standalone VR devices which will be available worldwide this year: the Oculus Go, Lenovo Mirage Solo, and HTC Vive Focus. The main…

Everything We Know About Oculus Go (so far)

Oculus Go is an upcoming standalone VR headset and controller that offers the same content library and a similar experience to Gear VR, but in a dedicated unit rather than a ‘headset shell’ accessory for a smartphone. What follows is a brief overview of everything we know about the soon the launch headset. What is…

Everything We Know About Oculus Santa Cruz (so far)

Oculus Santa Cruz is a VR prototype that brings many high-end features of the Oculus Rift and Touch, most notably positional (6DoF) tracking on both headset and controllers, into a self-contained, standalone design. What follows is a brief overview of everything we know about the headset so far. What is Oculus Santa Cruz? Image courtesy…

Inside VR Park, Dubai Mall’s Massive New VR Theme Park

The Dubai Mall, one of the world’s largest shopping complexes, is now home to VR Park, an indoor theme park spanning two floors and over 75,000 square feet of space, offering a wide variety of VR experiences, including several physical rides. At the opening of the park we went hands-on with the main attractions, many…

New Jersey Utility Uses Augmented Reality to Visualise Underground Infrastructure

vGIS, a new geographic information system (GIS) visualisation platform from the Environmental Systems Research Institute (Esri) partner Meemim, is being used to view underground infrastructure while wearing Microsoft Hololens. Piloted by Toms River Municipal Utilities Authority in New Jersey, the technology is a practical application of augmented reality, allowing the user to ‘see’ utility lines…

AR-Enhanced ‘Warhammer’ Trading Card Game to Launch July 2018

Warhammer Age of Sigmar Champions is an upcoming physical and digital trading card game coming to iOS, Android, and PC in July. Announced at GDC 2018, the augmented reality experience uses PlayFusion’s proprietary ‘Enhanced Reality Engine’ to unlock gameplay options on the physical cards when using mobile devices. Game studio PlayFusion, who are also a…

GDC 2018 ‘Day 3’ Roundup – Oculus Go Details, Vive Focus Global Launch, New Qualcomm VRDK, and More

Here’s a roundup of news from the third day of our GDC 2018 coverage. Qualcomm’s latest reference headset supports Vive Wave, HTC Vive Focus international launch, Oculus talks about their 2018 ecosystem, announces ‘Positional Timewarp’, reveals new Oculus Go details, and Unreal Engine’s real-time ray-tracing demo. Qualcomm’s reference VR headset supports Vive Wave image captured…

Watch: ILMxLab’s Star Wars Real-Time Ray-Tracing Demo on Unreal Engine is Stunning

At the Unreal Engine presentation at GDC 2018 today, Epic Games CTO Kim Libreri introduced several projects highlighting the scalability and performance of Unreal technology, including a partnership with ILMxLAB and Nvidia. This was the first live demonstration of interactive, real-time, ray-tracing with Unreal Engine. Nvidia announced RTX on Monday, a real-time ray-tracing solution designed…

Google Opens ‘Maps’ API So Devs Can Create ‘Pokémon Go’-style Games

During the Google Developer Day presentation at GDC 2018, Product Manager Clementine Jacoby and Engineering Lead Patrick Donelan at Google Maps presented the team’s progress in bringing their technology and data to game developers. Several ‘location-based’ AR games using Google Maps APIs and ARCore are coming to mobile devices this year. Building large virtual worlds…

Sony Highlights 30+ PSVR Games Launching This Spring

Over on the US PlayStation Blog, SIEA Social Media Manager Justin Massongill has compiled a list of 34 PSVR games targeting a Spring 2018 release. The article details some of the more anticipated titles: Ark Park, Crisis on the Planet of the Apes, Rick and Morty: Virtual Rick-ality, Smash Hit Plunder, Torn, and Xing: The…

LeanGP Home Motorcycle Sim Doubles Crowdfunding Goal With 3 Weeks to Go

Described as the “first affordable and foldable motorcycle simulator,” LeanGP is a dedicated gaming controller and chassis for bike enthusiasts, compatible with various VR-supported gaming platforms. Valencia-based startup LeanGP reached their Kickstarter goal within the first 48 hours of the crowdfunding campaign. Unlike the breadth of hardware available for car simulation, the selection of consumer-grade…

‘VTOL VR’ Update Introduces Air Combat Fighter Jet and Mission Editor

VR-only flight simulator VTOL VR, recently received a substantial update that includes a mission editor and a pilotable fighter jet. The sim is designed specifically around the use of VR motion controls, and is available in Early Access on Steam. Since our early hands-on in August, VTOL VR has enjoyed several rounds of improvements and fixes, including…

‘Assetto Corsa Competizione’ Announced With VR Support, Coming This Summer

Following a week of teasing from Italian developer Kunos Simulazioni, their new racing sim has been revealed, Assetto Corsa Competizione, which is planned to enter Steam Early Access this summer. Announced as “The Official Blancpain GT Series Game”, the sim brings many technology upgrades over Assetto Corsa (2014), thanks in part to the move to…

Google Begins Experimenting with VR Ads

According to a recent entry on the Google Developers Blog, the company has begun experimenting with advertising formats suitable for placement inside of virtual reality experiences. Focusing on mobile VR platforms, the first idea they’ve shared for a native VR ad is a floating cube that can be optionally engaged with via a tap or…

AR Headset Startup CastAR is Reportedly Shutting Down

According to a report from Polygon, augmented reality company CastAR is heading for a shutdown, laying off staff from the Palo Alto headquarters and its internal AR software development studio in Salt Lake City. CastAR’s consumer hardware was due to launch this year. Concept render of the CastAR headset and controller | Image courtesy CastAR…

Facebook Fights to Prevent Oculus Rift Sales Ban

In February, ZeniMax filed an injunction to request the worldwide blocking of sales of products that use Oculus software, which includes both Rift and Gear VR hardware, following a recent high-profile court case against Facebook/Oculus. According to a Bloomberg report, the hearing was held on Tuesday, where Oculus’ lawyers fought the ban, which has so far not seen…

YouTube VR Creator Lab to Mentor and Fund Creators up to $40K

On August 7th 2017, YouTube Space LA hosts the beginning of the VR Creator Lab, a 3-month program to assist content creators in producing “original and experimental” 360-degree videos. Along with regular mentoring and advanced education from leading VR instructors, participants will receive $30K–$40K in funding toward the VR video production projects. The VR Creator…

Dungeons & Dragons ‘Dungeon Chess’ Comes to Oculus Rift and Gear VR

Dungeon Chess, described as “the first official Dungeons & Dragons-themed Gear VR Game”, is now available on both Samsung’s mobile VR platform and the Oculus Rift. The title combines classic chess gameplay with iconic D&D creature designs and suitably atmospheric environments. Building on the strength of their first VR game, Magic Table Chess, which is…

YouTube Now Offering Heatmaps for 360 Video Analytics

Spherical YouTube videos with over 1,000 views now include ‘360° Heatmaps’ within the Analytics section of the Creator Studio. The new feature provides a visual representation of low to high attention areas of the video, helping to inform content creators of what aspects of a 360-degree scene are engaging viewers the most. YouTube has supported…