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  • Palmer Luckey: Facebook Buying Oculus ‘The Best Thing That’s Ever Happened To VR’
    Palmer Luckey: Facebook Buying Oculus ‘The Best Thing That’s Ever Happened To VR’

    Despite parting ways with the company in 2017, Oculus Rift inventor Palmer Luckey still insists that Facebook buying Oculus was “the best thing that’s ever happened to the VR industry.”

    Luckey said as much in a recent interview with Wired. The 26-year-old left Facebook in March 2017 following a controversial story that alleged he had helped fund a political smear campaign during the 2016 Presidential Election. All of that seemingly hasn’t changed his outlook on the industry.

    “It was the best thing that’s ever happened to the VR industry,” he replied when asked if he regretted selling Oculus to Facebook. “It drove billions of dollars in investment into other startups.”

    Facebook bought Oculus in early 2014 for an initial sum of over $2 billion that’s now thought to be closer to $3 billion. Under Facebook, Oculus launched the Rift headset for PC users and, earlier this year, a standalone device named Oculus Go. When asked if he wished he still ran Oculus, Luckey simply replied: “I want what’s best for virtual reality.”

    A short while before he left Facebook, Luckey also became a central figure in a widely-publicized legal battle with ZeniMax Media, which claimed Oculus had stolen its own technology when John Carmack, previously of the ZeniMax-owned id Software and now Oculus CTO, collaborated with the company in its early days. Facebook was recently able to halve the $500 million payout it was ordered to give.

    Elsewhere in the interview, Luckey refuted the idea that price was the main reason VR sales had not taken off over the past few years. “A lot of people insist on price, but if the VR available today were as good as The Matrix, price wouldn’t be the issue,” he said. “It’s going to be a combination of better software and better hardware. Right now free isn’t cheap enough for most people.”

    Since leaving Oculus Luckey has started a new company named Anduril that develops defensive technology, including surveillance equipment for the US border. Last month we also reported that he was working on a solution for VR sim sickness.

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  • Skonec Entertainment Prove They’re All About Location-Based VR VRFocus caught up with the South Korean studio to learn more about its VR plans.
  • Oculus Connect 5 Will Livestream In VR, But Not On Rift
    Oculus Connect 5 Will Livestream In VR, But Not On Rift

    You’ll be able to watch next week’s Oculus Connect 5 in all but the most expensive of Facebook’s VR headsets.

    The Oculus Venues app, which launched earlier this year on Oculus Go and Gear VR, will be streaming keynote talks and eSports matches live from this year’s developer conference. Venues hasn’t yet launched on the Oculus Rift, though, so owners of the PC VR headset will have to settle for standard streaming if they don’t have a Go or Gear.

    Venues is a free piece of software that allows you to meet up with friends and watch certain events either on a giant virtual screen or with panoramic views. It’s already been used for sporting and musical events (and, brilliantly, it streamed the Twilight Saga last weekend), but this is the first time Oculus is livestreaming one of its own events from inside the app.

    Featured events include the opening keynote, the always-eventful John Carmack talk and livestreamed matches of Onward and Echo Arena. Talk-based sessions will be shown in 180 degrees, but Oculus will also offer a first look at in-VR 360 degree streaming gameplay for the eSports sessions.

    Elsewhere Oculus has confirmed that The Void’s popular location-based VR experience, Star Wars: Secrets of the Empire, will be available to play at the show, which will give anyone that hasn’t been to Disneyland in the last 12 months a chance to try it out.

    Oculus Connect 5 kicks off on September 26th with an opening keynote that’s bound to be filled with news. You can be sure that we’ll be covering all of the latest announcements from the show.

    Tagged with: Oculus Connect 5, Oculus Venues

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  • Continue the Story of Unearthing Mars 2: The Ancient War on PlayStation VR Today The sequel has only been announced for Sony's VR headset.
  • Pre-Order Ace Combat 7 to get Ace Combat 5 for Free New VR gameplay footage of Ace Combat 7: Skies Unknown has surfaced.
  • Oculus Seems To Have Patented The Fabric Wrap For Santa Cruz
    Oculus Seems To Have Patented The Fabric Wrap For Santa Cruz

    Today in mildly interesting and painfully specific patents from big VR companies: Oculus seems to have patented the fabric that will wrap around its upcoming Santa Cruz headset.

    The patent, filed exactly a year ago today and published yesterday, was first spotted by Reddit user valdovas. It describes an “ornamental design for a fabric wrap for head-mounted display”, with several images showing how it wraps around the top of the device. I’m an especially big fan of Figures 2 through 5, which just shown the thin sides of the material. It’s nothing if not thorough, though the text to describe the design is mercifully brief compared to most Oculus patents.

    Simply fascinating

    It definitely seems to be Santa Cruz; the headset design sports indentations in the front four corners where the sensors for inside-out tracking would go. Plus, Oculus’ only other recent headset, Oculus Go, doesn’t have any fabric wrapped around it. That’s our investigative work done for the week.

    This image of the latest prototype for Santa Cruz gives you a detailed look at said fabric. Looks comfy, no?

    All jokes aside, we’re hoping to see a big reveal of Santa Cruz at next week’s Oculus Connect 5 event in San Jose, California. We’ve previously confirmed that the company is targetting a Q1 2019 launch for the device. The all-in-one headset, which offers everything you need to jump straight into VR, promises to provide immersive VR experiences with six degrees of freedom (6DOF) positional tracking without the need for external sensors and doesn’t need to be tethered to a PC.

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  • Chilling Survival Horror Home Sweet Home Claws Onto PlayStation VR in October The horror game is based on real-world Thai mythology and lore.
  • Angry Birds Gets a Mixed Reality Makeover for Magic Leap One Angry Birds FPS: First Person Slingshot is due for release this Fall.
  • Angry Birds Is Coming To Magic Leap One Creator Edition
    Angry Birds Is Coming To Magic Leap One Creator Edition

    Magic Leap One is getting its first videogame from a major brand: Rovio Entertainment’s Angry Birds.

    Resolution Games, a Stockholm-based developer best known for VR games like Bait! and Narrows (and was notably founded by former members of Candy Crush Saga developers, King), today announced Angry Birds FPS: First Person Slingshot, which is on its way to the new augmented reality headset. The Angry Birds games rose to fame as an addictive series of smartphone titles in which you fired moody feathered friends into towers to topple then and has since grown into a massive franchise including movies and toys.

    As the name suggests, the first AR entry in the franchise is played from a first-person perspective. Using Magic Leap’s remote-like motion controller, you fire birds at virtual towers that appear in the real world around you. Successful hits will send Jenga-like blocks flying, causing structures to crumble and even crush the green pigs that hide within them. You earn points based upon how efficiently you take out towers. Check out the first trailer below.

    It seems like it could be a good fit for the platform, especially considering that the distance between the player and tower might mean that Magic Leap’s restrictive field of view (FOV) isn’t too much of an issue. This isn’t the first time the Angry Birds franchise has dabbled with immersive platforms. Rovio developed a VR demo for the series back in 2016, though it never materialized as a full game. Resolution has also experimented with AR before, revealing a sequel to Bait! for smartphones earlier this year.

    Angry Birds FPS is currently scheduled to launch on Magic Leap One in the fall of 2018. Despite being a full game, it’s important to note that the headset itself isn’t really a consumer-level headset yet, having been dubbed with the ‘Creator Edition’ label.

    Tagged with: Angry Birds FPS, Magic Leap One

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  • PSVR Exclusive Astro Bot Gets Plenty Of New Gameplay In Latest Trailer
    PSVR Exclusive Astro Bot Gets Plenty Of New Gameplay In Latest Trailer

    We’re not too far from the launch of anticipated PlayStation VR (PSVR) exclusive, Astro Bot Rescue Mission now. Before launch, though, there’s just time for another look at the gameplay.

    In the video below members of developer Sony Japan are on-hand to discuss making the game, and what makes it different to more traditional third-person platformers. It comes with plenty of new gameplay footage of the game, in which you control a tiny robot making his way through massive levels in an adventure to save his friends.

    PSVR veterans will recognize Astro Bot as an extension of the Robo Rescue minigame found on the free Playroom VR launch compilation. Just like Lucky’s Tale before it, the game gives players complete control of the camera just by moving their heads, which introduces an entirely new set of mechanics and opportunities. We’re especially big fans of using the position tracking features of the DualShock 4 to bring the controller into the virtual world and make it a big element of the gameplay.

    Astro Bot is touching down on PSVR on October 2nd. We’re very excited to see what comes from it.

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  • Valve Unveils New Knuckles EV3 Controllers Improved ergonomics, battery life and much more.
  • In Death is Leaving Early Access Next Month The launch adds a brand-new chapter, Paradise Lost.
  • Slime Rancher Is Coming To VR Via Free DLC This Fall
    Slime Rancher Is Coming To VR Via Free DLC This Fall

    The wacky world of Monomi Park’s Slime Rancher is coming to VR.

    The developer this week announced a collaboration with 3lb Games to release a free DLC update for the game later this fall adding in headset support. For those that don’t know, the Slime Rancher series is a little like a Harvest Moon game or Stardew Valley, except that instead of growing plants you’re collecting hundreds of a colorful little blobs known as slimes and instead of being on Earth you’re actually exploring an alien planet light years away. Okay, so it’s a little different.

    The VR add-on will introduce some of the game’s most popular locations (Dry Reef, Moss Blanket and Ancient Ruins) to headsets and allow you to interact with pink, tabby, and phosphor slimes. It doesn’t look like it’ll offer the full games’ breadth of content but you will be able to play with your adorable little friends like never before.

    We don’t know exactly which headsets will support the DLC right now, though we’ve reached out to Monomi Park to ask.

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  • Sony Japan Studio Takes You Behind-the Scenes of Astro Bot: Rescue Mission Astro Bot: Rescue Mission has now gone gold.
  • Life In 360°: Aerial Photography Get onboard a military jet with Lockheed Martin.