Are you into VR stuff like us?
Virtual reality (VR) has not completely revolutionized the gaming industry, and it will most likely not change how we interact with each other, watch movies or TV, conduct meetings, or any of the other activities written about in the over-hyped predictions about mainstream VR that arrived in the early to mid 2010s.
The anticipation doesn't match the reality of what it is and how it functions (virtual or otherwise). We're still probably a decade away from VR is truly affordable and convenient enough to be a mass-market item rather than a fair niche interest.
Not yet, the VR market has not fully explored. Should it actually fail, I prefer to consider that it has given us many invaluable lessons. The amount of money sunk into virtual reality, billions from Facebook and Valve and Sony and other companies invested in making VR gear and software, means that we'll continue getting more advanced equipment that can released and will continuously get lower prices and will continuously made more user friendly and will continue to have more and more VR games being released.
The presence of them is many, many breakthroughs in how we can interact with movement in our environment, gaming, even just total immersion within it. And probably some other things, too. Virtual reality could still have a bright and exciting future—that future is only a bit off, and most people expected it to happen much sooner.
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It was a big year for virtual reality (VR) in 2020. There's yet to be seen a game that can be said to be the killer app for VR. However, we saw several very graphics-rich AAA games that use VR. We also saw Oculus launch another high-quality VR headset, the Oculus Quest 2. But the gaming system and the virtual reality headset come with a few serious disappointments.
Probably the biggest VR event last year was the release of Half-Life: Alyx, the full-length VR game from Valve, and the first Half-Life game since 2007. Half-life is an exceptional game that was VR-only (VR), but is a triumphant return to the series, with the only downside (a rather big one) that fans that couldn't play it because of VR couldn't play it. And aside from a few people, most gamers still do not own a headset.
Half-life: Alyx was not without its troubles, either, including the run-up time leading to its release. Because of people's needs (i.e., they wanted Index VR, which is a very expensive and excellent virtual reality system), demand for the Valves' product (i.e., Index VR) quickly sold out both online and in stores. And despite having made a successful debut at the Paris trade show in 1889, the Index was still a difficult to find commodity in the 1 920s. But those who got to play Alyx (even with a tethered Quest headset or a Vive) immersed in a thrilling return to the Half-Life universe: many fans bought VR gear for the first time just to play it.
At the end of the previous year Alyx was the greatest VR game of all time, Phasmophobia's co-op ghost hunting game was the perfect fit for VR, The Walking Dead: Saints and Sinners is a challenging survival game with lots of brains, Population: One is a solid VR battle royal, Star Wars Squadrons has VR support, and Microsoft Flight Simulator added support in December. Somewhat disappointing, however, was a Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond, another highly expected full-length VR game that, unfortunately, didn't quite deliver for critics or fans.
In terms of development, Oculus did not have a good year overall. However, there were some truly great things that Oculus did I feel should highlighted. The new Oculus Quest 2 released, and test subjects had mostly positive reactions, with their overall experience being shorter, faster, and cheaper than the original Quest (which it is still great). The Quest headset not as advanced as Valve's Index or the Vive Pro, but makes up for it by being so easy to use. Comparing the Quest to fiddly setups of the Vive or Index can compared to the ease of using an iPod compared to Amazon's Kindle. Put your computer on and it will be ready to play a game in a moment.
The Oculus Quest 2
When Facebook dropped a bomb on the Oculus party by requiring a Facebook account in order to use the Oculus headset, they ended up seeing significant decreases in the Rift's sale. This was a disturbing development at a most underwhelming time when Facebook is facing heavy criticism over its lack of care in sharing of misleading information, continued privacy concerns, and is under a withering FTC scrutiny for anticompetitive conduct. (And this does not even consider all the Facebook-related issues everyone has - like how the service sucks, how they capitalize on your private and personal information, and how the company thinks they're above the law and do whatever they want, etc.…
Having a Facebook account to connect with your Oculus Rift or other VR gaming headset hasn't gone over well with the gaming community , even if you have a Facebook account, there might still be problems with connecting it. The context of the message here is such that it puts a big damper on the whole VR community - and for Facebook this is fine as the investment is quite small. However, without notice the rule changes will leave the VR community baffled. Hold up.
There are a lot of gamers?
This is correct. Even without considering all the other factors, Valve says that in 2020 the VR market would increase 32% year over year (and you can add another 39 percent when you include Alyx). Valve continues to report the growing popularity of virtual reality (VR) games on Steam. 1.7 million new users have set up a Steam account and billions of VR sessions took place on the platform in the previous year.
While developing the vive, Valve has also found that their VR sessions can only last 32 minutes on average, which may be because of the various issues of comfort and convenience that they still have to contend with while using VR. As is typical, sometimes I use it for longer periods of time before I need a break, and people we have heard reports of motion sickness or headaches after very long duration (I don't mean one's closer to two hours!).
Facebook does not disclose a lot of their stats, however, they announced they sold over five times as many quests 2 headsets, as opposed to the original Quest. The same thing was still true to the original Quest game this year, and the original game could be difficult to get last year. All three VR headset experiences experienced a few briefs, but the occasional delay on purchases to their online stores in December.
What will be the next big move in VR?
Looking at the upcoming games, I see few are on the same level of depth of what Alyx Vance and Medal of Honor are, but there are still a few fun games to be excited about.
Although not anywhere near 2017's masterpiece, there is the opportunity for the "Lone Echo 2" to released later in 2021. There's the "Sam & Max" VR game that is due our next year (There're many others out there that are also coming out this year, but I feel that those wonderful games aren't in the same class.) That there is "Crytek's The Climb 2". (The third installment of the Hitman game supports virtual reality on PlayStation, but not on PC yet—fingers crossed it will command supported in the future, though). Not only are there many smaller boards, computer, and video games that are made every day; there are also floods of smaller, indie games, puzzle games, and VR games.