News

  • Spuds Unearthed Coming to PlayStation VR, Indiegogo Campaign Launched The PlayStation VR version is expected later this year.
  • The Current State Of The VR/AR Patent Landscape

    A comprehensive breakdown of the VR/AR patent process. Virtual and artificial reality technologies are changing the world. In the very near future, virtual reality headsets are expected to significantly shift the way consumers work, experience entertainment, make purchases, and participate in social activities. The rise of patent applications for VR/AR technologies signals the number of

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  • Physics-Based Puzzle Builder Gadgeteer Scheduled for HTC Vive Launch Next Week A world of crazy chain reaction machines await.
  • How AR Is Reshaping Brand Marketing

    Providing a better consumer experience using immersive technology. When it comes to any business, marketing is everything. It builds brand awareness, creates an opportunity for you to engage with your customers, and can increase sales. Unique advertising campaigns can help you stand out from your competitors, which is absolutely crucial for success. As AR technology

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  • Facebook Reportedly Working on a Voice Assistant Compatible With Oculus It'll be an AI assistant similar to Amazon's Alexa.
  • Facebook Is Developing An AI Assistant For Oculus Headsets
    Facebook Is Developing An AI Assistant For Oculus Headsets

    Which has the better ring to it, “Hey, Oculus?” or “Okay, Oculus”? I’m asking because Facebook’s VR headsets could soon have an AI voice assistant of their own.

    CNBC first reported that the social networking giant was building a new voice assistant to work across multiple platforms. A Facebook spokesperson since confirmed the news to us with the following statement: “We are working to develop voice and AI assistant technologies that may work across our family of AR/VR products including Portal, Oculus and future products.”

    Oculus is handling a lot of Facebook’s VR and AR efforts but the Portal group is working in these areas too alongside new camera tech.

    Theoretically, such an assistant could give VR users hands-free control of the Oculus platform. Every existing and upcoming Oculus headset (Rift, Go, Quest and Rift S) features a built-in microphone. You could use that to, say, summon Oculus Dash without pressing the menu button, or maybe open virtual windows into your desktop at a moment’s notice.

    As spotted by The Verge, the team is being led by Ira Synder, who holds the rather obvious title of Director, AR/VR and Facebook Assistant at Facebook on his LinkedIn page. Facebook Assistant could either be the final name for the AI, or it could simply be an internal name.

    We’ll be interested to see whether Facebook takes a more futuristic step with this AI, too. Siri and the Google Assistant are designed to sound like humans, but we can’t see them. Could Facebook’s offering revolve around seeing the assistant as well as hearing them?

    Whatever Facebook’s plans are there’s a decent chance we’ll find out more at its annual developer conference, F8. That’s set to kick off in, oh, just under two weeks from now.

    Tagged with: AI Assistant, facebook

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  • Latest Valve Index Controller Firmware Brings Noticeably Improved Finger Tracking
    Latest Valve Index Controller Firmware Brings Noticeably Improved Finger Tracking

    Those lucky enough to have their hands on Valve’s upcoming VR controllers are reporting noticeably better finger tracking thanks to a new firmware update released yesterday.

    The changelog reads:

    Finger tracking: This update adds logic for detecting and adapting to a wider range of hand sizes and finger placements based on finger activity over time.

    Some developers with prototypes of the controllers had previously reported issues with the finger tracking. Based on the changelog, this seems to be related to the difficulty in supporting the wide range of human hand sizes.

    This video from YouTuber Bradley Lynch shows the combined hardware and software improvements from November to today:

    The Index Controllers were codenamed “Knuckles” during development. The main selling feature is the ability to fully let go of the controller, which allows for more natural grabbing and throwing of virtual objects.

    An early protoype was first shown back in 2016. Over the past three years Valve has continously improved the prototypes. Back in June, the company reduced the touchpad to a small strip and addded a thumbstick for better gaming.

    The concept of finger tracking through capacitive sensors was first shipped in the Oculus Touch controllers in late 2016. But whereas Touch only tracks the thumb and index finger, Valve’s controllers track the other three fingers too. This allows for a much wider range of gestures and should increase the feeling of hand presence.

    Valve is launching its own PC VR headset alongside these controllers. But since the controllers use the SteamVR “Lighthouse” tracking system, they will also natively work with the existing HTC Vive and Vive Pro. That means if you own one of those headsets, you can preorder these controllers in May. Valve says they’ll ship in June.

    Tagged with: valve, valve index, vr controllers

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  • This Awesome Labo VR Zelda Mod Comes Complete With Head Strap
    Labo VR Zelda Mod

    Thought you were excited about The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild in VR? Us too, but probably not as much as Jeramey Polcyn. He’ll be playing it like this:

    In less than a week since the launch of the Nintendo Labo VR Kit, Polcyn has created an awesome mod for the device. It’s a seriously impressive piece of work, installing a much-needed head strap (the original Labo did doesn’t come with one), a comfy face cushion and, to top it all off, a custom Zelda design. It’s worthy of the Triforce itself.

    Polcyn walks you through his work in the video above and provided us with these other images. In his version, he’s added buckles to connect the head strap, held in place with duct tape. As for the buckles, Polcyn advises looking out for this type of fit.

    “I would recommend the top piece to make side straps instead of buckles on bottom makes it more adjustable for different size heads I had this on my original prototype,” Polcyn says.

    His design arrives just in time for the official VR support for Breath of the Wild. Nintendo will patch VR support into the original game for free on April 26th. You’ll be able to play the entire thing from start to finish in VR, though cutscenes will be removed. Nintendo says it’s best for taking some time out to appreciate the game’s prettier sights. I’m still kind of tempted to play through Master Mode using the thing, though.

    Tagged with: Headset mod, Nintendo Labo VR Kit, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild VR

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  • Acron Is A New Multiplayer VR Game From The Makers Of Angry Birds VR
    Acron 3

    Not long after the release of Angry Birds VR on several platforms, developer Resolution Games is back. It’s fair to say its latest project, Acron, is a fair bit different to its previous work.

    Acron is a multiplayer VR game in which players face off against others outside of the headset. The VR player embodies an enormous ancient tree that protects Golden Acrons (no I’m not spelling it wrong) known as the ‘seeds of life’. Meanwhile, other players on iOS and Android devices form a team of squirrels that, you guessed it, want the Acrons for themselves. They may have numbers on their side but the VR player is much larger.

    We don’t have any gameplay footage yet but the image above gives you a pretty good idea of the game’s tone.

    “We feel the future of VR will be social and are focused on integrating multiplayer components in every game we create,” Resolution CEO Tommy Palm told us over email. “When it comes to cross-platform games we see an opportunity for VR enthusiasts to share the VR experience while exposing more people to the magic of VR. ACRON in particular is intended to be a party game where players can jump in and out, pass around the VR headset, change roles, challenge each other and have a ton of fun. Imagine having a dozen guests over with many of them participating in the play with others likely having just as much fun spectating. It’s about as inclusive of a VR experience as you can get.”

    It’s the eighth project from Stockholm-based Resolution, which got its start with casual mobile VR titles like Solitaire Jester and Bait!. Last year the studio also released a version of Angry Birds for the Magic Leap One AR headset.

    Resolution says the game will launch across “several major VR platforms” as well as iOS and Android. No specifics were provided but Angry Birds VR came to pretty much every headset under the sun and will soon arrive on Oculus’ new Quest standalone headset too. Back in February, the studio told us that it was working on “a few” projects for Quest, so it’s possible this is one of them.

    Look for Acron to launch later this summer. For more information about the game you can check out an official website.

    Tagged with: Acron, multiplayer vr, resolution games

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  • Bait! Developer Resolution Games Reveals Multiplayer Party Game ACRON It'll feature both VR and mobile support.
  • CreativeXR Funds 20 UK Studios Working On New VR/AR Projects
    CreativeXR Funds 20 UK Studios Working On New VR/AR Projects

    A few months back CreativeXR launched its second year of funding opportunities for UK studios. The initiative, put together by Digital Catapult and Arts Council England, was looking for teams working on experiential VR and AR projects. This week, the programme revealed the 2019 recipients.

    CreativeXR gave 20 studios a grant of £20,000. They span the breadth of the UK and feature a few names you might have seen before. Familiar faces include No Ghost, the animation studio behind the Madrid Noir series. 59 Productions, the maker of UploadVR award-winner, Nothing To Be Written, is also included. We’ve got the full list of studios below.

    “These projects demonstrate the potential of immersive content to produce new forms of creativity and cultural experience when artistic vision is combined with technology,” Francis Runacres, Executive Director of Enterprise and Innovation, Arts Council England said in a prepared statement. “We’re very pleased to have all the teams on board, and look forward to seeing their projects develop.”

    Alongside the grant, CreativeXR will also provide access to mentorship, including support from a new partner, RYOT Studio, as well as others like the BBC, Unity and Royal Opera House.

    Back in February, we took a trip to see some of the successful recipients of last year’s programme. We were treated to some amazing VR experiences like Commons Grounds, a short documentary detailing the decline of London’s Aylesbury Estate. With any luck, this year’s winners will produce something as equally as compelling.

    Full List Of Winners

    COSMOS Immersive by Abandon Normal Devices, Manchester
    Dazzle Ball R&D by Gibson Martelli, London
    Invisible Light by 59 Productions, London
    Therese & Peta: A Tale of Two-Spirits by Queer Media CIC, Lancashire
    Rory Mullarkey’s Flood by Megaverse, London
    Bedlam by Mat Collishaw, London
    A Split Second by Also Known As, London
    Goliath by Anagram, Bristol/London
    Europe After the Rain by Imitating the Dog, Leeds
    The Time Machine by The Old Market, East Sussex
    Breathe by Darkfield, London
    UnDust by Satore Studio, London
    Basic Tension by Jamila Johnson-Small Dance, London
    What is Normal? By Call & Response, London
    Present by Fight in the Dog, London
    Zia Dance Duet by BespokeVR Ltd, Middlesex
    Through the wardrobe by Colour My Reality, Bristol
    Madrid Noir: The Office by No Ghost, London
    basilisk by Studio Leg, Manchester
    Game Over by Blackwatch Entertainment in association with Circa69, London

    Tagged with: CreativeXR

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  • 5 New Games Added to Oculus Quest’s Launch Lineup, Including Thumper Anticipation grows even greater.
  • Oculus Quest Welcome Video & Setup Guide Have Leaked Online

    Corgi’s are a major safety hazard in this leaked video for the Oculus Quest. Thanks to a series of videos posted online by YouTuber user NyanBlade, it appears as though we now have our first look at the opening welcome video and setup guide for the upcoming Oculus Quest. The “Welcome Video”, while brief, showcases

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  • Google’s Tilt Brush Heads To The Oculus Quest This Spring

    The popular VR art tool will arrive on Quest with cross-buy support. Facebook confirmed earlier today that Google’s immensely popular room-scale VR painting experience, Tilt Brush, is coming to the Oculus Quest headset this Spring. According to Google’s Product Manager Elisabeth Morant, the act of porting the application—released originally for SteamVR and the Oculus Rift—came

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  • USA TODAY Builds AR Replica Of Notre Dame In Less Than 8 Hours

    Take an augmented tour of the structural damages caused by Monday’s fire. While French President Emmanuel Macron hopes to complete the repairs within five years, architectural experts predict it could take decades to fully renovate the historic Notre Dame cathedral after Monday’s devastating fire. Although the bulk of the structure remains intact, nearly the entire

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