Articles by PyPKjE

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Scarlett Johansson & Friends Play Virtual Reality Pictionary on the ‘Tonight Show’

Late last year, NBC’s popular late night talk show the Tonight Show with host Jimmy Fallon debuted a new Virtual Reality Pictionary segment which uses the HTC Vive and Tilt Brush. Scarlett Johansson, Michael Che, and Dove Cameron are the latest to step into VR with Fallon. Fallon is no stranger to VR. As far back as 2013, when he was hosting Late Night, he saw an early protoype version of the Oculus Rift that was held together with gaffers tape. In 2014, Fallon demoed Sony’s PSVR (back when it was still called ‘Project Morpheus’) on The Tonight Show. He’s also had the HTC Vive on the show in a number of one-off segments. Embracing the HTC Vive, The Tonight Show last year debuted a new…

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HTC’s New ‘VR Ad Service’ Can Tell If You’ve Looked at an Ad or Not

In-game advertisement (IGA) is a pretty divisive issue; on one hand it provides needed incentive to developers who otherwise wouldn’t have the funds, on the other hand its … advertisement, something most people try to avoid on principle. Now that virtual reality is coming to a wider audience, it seems the medium is mature enough to open the conversation about funding games with ads, something HTC is letting developers enable in a big way with their newly announced VR Ad Service—and VR ads are different. Very different. Launched today at 2017 VIVE Ecosystem Conference, a new HTC event centered on the future of the Vive platform, the VR Ad Service will make it easier for developers to integrate a number…

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PSVR Dating Sim ‘Summer Lesson’ to Get English Subtitles and Broader Release in April

Summer Lesson, a rather unique offering among PSVR games, launched alongside the headset in Japan back in November. Now, come April 28th, the game will see a broader release into Southeastern Asia release with English subtitles, opening the door to enjoyment by those who don’t speak the game’s native Japanese language. Those in Western regions interested in the title may be able to download it as well. IGN reports that during the Bandai Namco Entertainment Product Conference in Singapore this week, the company announced a new version of Summer Lesson which will come bundled with two DLCs, include English subtitles, and launch in Southeast Asian markets. The trailer below shows one of the DLC and its English subtitles: While there aren’t…

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Now on Rift: How Harmonix Turned ‘Rock Band VR’ Into a Brand New Gameplay Experience

The developers at Harmonix didn’t set out to create an open-ended music creativity tool with Rock Band VR, but once they realized how compelling it was to simulate the feeling of being a rock star on stage in VR, then they completely pivoted the production of their game. They discovered that it wasn’t as gripping in VR to force users to focus on any single gameplay mechanic, and so they focused on allowing users to look around to cultivate deep feelings of immersion and stage presence. Now available on the Oculus Rift and Touch, Rock Band VR brings players into their rockstar fantasy by using the Rock Band VR adapter to attach a Touch controller to make the guitar part…

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‘Starfighter Inc.’ Promises VR Space Combat Sim Built on a Hard Sci-Fi Foundation

Starfighter Inc., said to be the spiritual successor to X-Wing vs. TIE Fighter (1997), is one of the most interesting space combat simulation projects currently in development. Recently relaunched on Kickstarter, developers Impeller Studios’ new crowdfunding campaign has a smaller goal but much more to show. Impeller Studios formed in 2013, launching their initial Kickstarter campaign for Starfighter Inc. in 2015, looking to raise $250,000 to assist the development process. Unfortunately, the campaign failed to reach its goal, stopping just 10% shy of the required funds. The team had already committed to completing the project, so development continued as promised, and now the project is back on Kickstarter, with a modest $150,000 goal, and a “stronger, clearer, and more detailed…

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‘Assetto Corsa’ Racing Sim Adds Support for Vive & OSVR via Native OpenVR

This week’s v1.13 update to Assetto Corsa includes native OpenVR support, adding official Vive and OSVR support to the title. The popular racing simulator previously only supported the Oculus Rift, and HTC Vive owners had to use the Revive hack to launch the game in VR. Assetto Corsa has a long history with virtual reality, having supported the first Oculus Rift DK1 development kit in 2013, back when the simulator itself was in its early stages. With major physics engine and content development to focus on, VR support was always in an ‘early’, unfinished state, but its core driving experience was so convincing, it was worth the effort to jump through the hoops required to race in VR. .IRPP_kangoo , .IRPP_kangoo…

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‘Warpaint’ Brings Tabletop Gaming-inspired Turn-based Strategy & Customization to VR

Recently launched on Steam, Warpaint is a turn-based strategy game that lets you customize your troops by painting them to your taste. The game supports both Mac and PC, and features VR support via SteamVR (Vive, Rift, and OSVR). Taking inspiration from board and tabletop games like hexagonal chess and Warhammer, Warpaint’s gameplay is easy to pick up but hard to master. Real-time strategy gaming seems to suit VR pretty well, but few developers have chosen the turn-based approach; Warpaint shows that the more sedate pace of turn-based strategy is a natural fit for VR too. Commanding an army of dwarves with different movement abilities, the gameplay is mostly tactical, and played with a surprisingly high degree of tension, thanks…

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‘Apex’, the Next Real-time VR Music Video from Creator of the Acclaimed ‘Surge’, Premiers Next Month

Arjan van Meerten, the indie 3D artist and musician behind the widely acclaimed Surge VR music video, has confirmed Apex as his next project. Update (3/21/17, 11:35AM PT): In development since 2016, the followup to the acclaimed Surge is finally set to make its world premiere. Apex will debut at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival next month as part of the event’s Virtual Arcade section. A teaser for the experience states:  Step into a surrealistic and darkly beautiful vision of a fiery urban apocalypse; one populated by skeletal ghost animals, abstract shapes, maniacal smiling giants and, of course, you. It isn’t clear when (or how) after the debut that Apex will get a release date for the rest of us, but…

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The VOID Opens Mixed-Reality Location in Dubai

THE VOID, the untethered mixed-reality park, is opening a new location in Dubai, UAE. The new Dubai-based park is the company’s second public location, and will be hosting their Ghostbusters: Dimension experience—the same currently running at their first location at Madame Tussaud’s New York. The makers say the new park, located on the high-rent shopping area of The Beach on the Dubai Marina, is however a “limited engagement” with a presumably finite amount of slots available to the public before it closes. The park opens on March 24th, with tickets going on sale the 23rd. No definite closing date has been reported. photo courtesy The VOID The Void combines a real world environment—i.e. a predetermined play space and objects within it—with corresponding virtual imagery…

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NASA’s ‘Mission: ISS’ is an Impressively Detailed View of Life in Zero Gravity

NASA and Oculus have launched their collaborative project ‘Mission: ISS’ for the Oculus Rift for free and it’s offers a detailed, visually sumptuous virtual reality trip to space that most of us would otherwise never experience. Virtual Reality’s transportative powers being used to live out experiences most of us will never have in real life is rarely most effective than in the realm of space travel. Given the tiny fraction of Earth’s inhabitants that have (around 500 to date) or ever will venture beyond the planet’s gravitational field, VR can give as what life is like for those brave enough to travel beyond it. Mission: ISS is the latest VR experience to try to convey what it feels to be…