Published: 13 June 2017
For once, I’m shutting up about VR.
I bothered my colleagues to talk about it instead.
For all my talk about the importance of people trying VR for themselves, and how “video just doesn’t do it justice”, I realised that I hadn’t given the wider Sagittarius team a chance to experience it.
And so, one year on from the launch of commercial, “roomscale” VR kits, I decided to bring my own HTC Vive into our loft for two days, with an open invite to the team to try out Virtual Reality for themselves.
So, yeah… I’m not saying a word about VR today.
Not a peep.
Over to the team.
Having only experienced VR through Google Cardboard, I was pretty excited about the opportunity to try the real thing!
It took some getting used to but when I did I was off, swinging from the trees and taking down baddies dressed in morph suits, and I definitely needed to be in control of my own destiny, as I found out when Kris took a hold of the controls whilst I had the headset on... wasn't keen on that!
I was so taken in by this new world and how it could be used in other areas besides gaming. That evening I was researching upgrades for my entry level Google Cardboard, and talking with my wife about how it could be used in sport and to sell holidays
It's amazing how quickly you become immersed in the experience, completely forgetting that you're actually stood in a room surrounded by people and feeling that you're genuinely in your virtual surroundings.
The graphics and accuracy of the movements in relation to your controllers are hugely impressive, it'll be fascinating to see how VR develops.
I was surprised how much of a physical experience this was - very interesting and great fun. I can see how you could become immersed in these worlds.
THIS IS WEIRD... THIS IS AWESOME.... THIS IS WEIRD... THIS IS AWESOME.... THIS IS WEIRD... THIS IS AWESOME....
Considering you’re wearing a headset that's trailing a fairly thick lead, holding controllers it all still feels so natural, so wearing the gear doesn't feel like it takes you out of the VR world.
I was a bit apprehensive about trying the VR as to me it was a weird concept to get my head around (I have always experienced a game via a screen rather than a headset).
I was not eased in gently as my first ever VR experience involved shooting at Alien ships that were trying to attack me, followed closely by being on a ship in the ocean bed with fish swimming round me (to which I freaked out).
It was the best VR experience I've had. The hand-held controllers really help you feel like you're there! What I enjoyed most is that I felt like I could do this all day, there were natural movement picked up by the game that made it feel real. Can't wait for future advances in VR, it's already this good what's next!?
I was surprised by VR's power to alter my perspective so much! One minute I'm standing in our Loft and the next on top of a ship wreck... in the ocean... with a MASSIVE drop between me and the ocean floor. The logical part of my brain knew that my feet were firmly on dry ground, but I still felt a hint of what I imagine I'd feel if I really were in that situation: a little bit panicked, a bit afraid of the height, a LOT claustrophobic... and a huge urge to run/swim away from the gigantic whale heading in my direction! (Yes, I'm a wimp!).
I can see VR used to test people's reactions to dangerous activities before they commit to doing them. A bungee jump for example...could you really bring yourself to jump from that height?! Or swimming with sharks... would you actually enjoy it, or just will it to be over already?!
Great to have a go, perhaps a little gimmicky until the tech has evolved beyond headsets (and cheaply available) for people to share experiences with others. VR has the potential to become a massive part of our social lives but also as a way for brands to share experiences and engage with users on a powerful emotional level.
Trying out the HTC Vive was a whole heap of fun.
Despite being the first generation of true consumer VR headsets, it still provides a truly immersive experience. This actually inspires me to wonder what the next generation devices will offer, with the prospect of higher resolution screens, advancements in optics, 3d audio and the removal of wires etc.
There is no doubt that even though current VR experiences are not photorealistic yet, it is such an immersive experience it has huge potential. It can fool your senses, which demonstrates its power, as well as proving how VR and Augmented reality are definitely going to become part of our everyday lives in the not too distant future.
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