Cinematic VR Audio Discussed at Game Developers Conference

Varun Nair of Two Big Ears Ltd. and Jean-Pascal (JP) Beaudoin of Headspace Studio gave an excellent primer on “Audio for Cinematic VR” at this week’s GDC VR Developers Conference at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. Beaudoin started by making two overarching points: the sense of presence in VR is proportional to the amount of immersion, and it is important to understand the Field of Audition (FoA – the sound space). The session also addressed three key types of sound space designs: diegetic audio, acousmatic audio and non-diegetic audio. Continue reading Cinematic VR Audio Discussed at Game Developers Conference

Snapchat Working on AR, Gamer Developers Turn to VR Titles

Snapchat has been making hires and acquisitions in augmented reality that may signal development of smart glasses. The company has brought in key people from Microsoft HoloLens, PTC’s (formerly Qualcomm’s) Vuforia and Eyefluence, an eye-tracking technology company. Snapchat’s interest in AR dates back to March 2014, when it quietly acquired Vergence Labs, maker of glasses with an embedded camera, for $15 million. At the time, the acquisition seemed out-of-place but now appears to be part of a larger AR strategy. Continue reading Snapchat Working on AR, Gamer Developers Turn to VR Titles

Oculus Rift the Most Popular VR Platform Among Developers

Today’s game developers are most interested in creating virtual reality projects for the Oculus Rift headset, according to a new survey from the Game Developers Conference. Nineteen percent of the 2,000 respondents said they were currently working on a new game for the device and 20 percent said their next VR project would be for the Oculus Rift. Only 8 percent of respondents said they were working on VR projects for Samsung’s Gear VR, the second most popular VR headset. Continue reading Oculus Rift the Most Popular VR Platform Among Developers

Perspective: In Reality, VR Not the Only Game at E3 (Part 1)

If you were not at E3, the recent Electronic Entertainment Expo, you might think that the great expanse of the Los Angeles Convention Center was wall-to-wall virtual reality. Despite VR’s headline domination, it was a different story on the floor where impressive visuals and sophisticated gameplay ignited the crowd. Even jaded game industry media could not contain their excitement. As IGN enthused after the Sony press conference, for instance, “That may be the best E3 press event ever.” We divided our overview into two parts: the evolution of E3 and direction of the gaming industry, followed by a breakdown of this year’s top products. Continue reading Perspective: In Reality, VR Not the Only Game at E3 (Part 1)

Study Finds That Virtual Nose May Reduce Simulator Sickness

One ongoing study is testing a potential solution for nausea-inducing VR content, and so far, a virtual reality nose has proven effective. Simulator sickness is believed to be caused by an asynchrony of the body’s movement and the visuals. Researchers suggest that a fixed visual reference, like a nose, can help reduce vertigo and nausea. The study participants who had a virtual nose didn’t even notice the added facial feature and could play more than a minute longer than the control group. Continue reading Study Finds That Virtual Nose May Reduce Simulator Sickness

Vive VR Headset Unveiled at Game Developers Conference

We recently reported that HTC partnered with Seattle-based gaming company Valve to develop Vive, a new VR headset with plans to compete with the Oculus Rift and Sony Morpheus. Valve is the developer behind Steam, the social platform for distributing and managing games. The Vive headset was unveiled at last week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, and is already generating positive reviews for its tech advances, including low latency and a fast refresh rate that reduces the incidence of “Sim Sickness.” Continue reading Vive VR Headset Unveiled at Game Developers Conference

Project Morpheus Gets Bigger Screen and Impressive New Specs

At this week’s Game Developers Conference in San Francisco, Sony announced that its PlayStation-powered Project Morpheus VR headset has some new specs. The screen resolution has been improved to 1,920 x RGB x 1,080 and its refresh rate has been doubled to 120Hz. Project Morpheus now features a new 5.7-inch screen with nearly 100-degree field of view, and touts lower latency, at under 18 milliseconds. While no price has been revealed, the company says it plans to launch the device by the first half of next year. Continue reading Project Morpheus Gets Bigger Screen and Impressive New Specs

Ouya Released to Early Backers, Retail Launch in June

Gaming startup Ouya, which raised more than $8 million last June via Kickstarter, announced it will release its $99 game console to retailers on June 4. The affordable Android-based box could encourage innovation and disrupt the TV gaming market, by allowing developers to create inexpensive games. Wired had a chance to play with the new device at design firm fuseproject, where Yves Behar created the metal cube that houses Ouya. Continue reading Ouya Released to Early Backers, Retail Launch in June

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