Season's Greetings! We present to you, our final AusGamers Wrap-Up of the year. Don't miss it, or the cliffhanger!
Season Finale: AusGamers Weekly Wrap-Up
AusGamers presents a hands-on report of the third major game in the 'World of' series from Wargaming, World of Tanks.
World of Warships Hands-On Preview
We take a look at the latest mobile gaming setup from GAEMS to see just how useful it is.
Tech Tuesday - GAEMS Vanguard Black Edition Review
We chat with 343 Industries about Halo 5: Guardians and the upcoming multiplayer beta!
343 Industries Talks Halo 5: Guardians Multiplayer Beta
Post by trog @ 05:52am 29/03/14 | 45 Comments
Industry veteran and programming hero Michael Abrash has announced that he has joined Oculus as their Chief Scientist to continue work on the Rift.

Abrash has been at Valve for the last few years, but anyone that has read any of his extensive blogging on the subject of virtual reality and the Oculus will know he's had a pretty keen interest in this area, so this is almost completely unsurprising news, especially to hardcore id Software junkies who remember his passion for VR when discussing things like the Metaverse from Neal Stephenson's sci-fi classic novel, Snow Crash. (If you have even a passing interest in VR, you should go and read that book.)

His passion for VR is evident in the article (which I strongly encourage you to read) and it is clear that this move for him - once again working with Carmack on a potentially world-changing technology - is a Big Deal.
We're on the cusp of what I think is not The Next Big Platform, but rather simply The Final Platform – the platform to end all platforms – and the path here has been so improbable that I can only shake my head.
He also comments on the Facebook acquisition, noting that it's the "final piece of the puzzle":
That worry is now gone. Facebook's acquisition of Oculus means that VR is going to happen in all its glory. The resources and long-term commitment that Facebook brings gives Oculus the runway it needs to solve the hard problems of VR – and some of them are hard indeed. I now fully expect to spend the rest of my career pushing VR as far ahead as I can.
For the many amongst us that have been waiting for years for this sort of technology to finally be ready, this is great news - a programming, technology and gaming legend rolled into one and joining what is looking like a genuine dream team of people.

While many gamers have expressed concerns about Facebook's acquisition of Oculus, I can still only see it as a good thing - and the addition of Abrash to the team simply bolsters my confidence that they're still on the right track. I look forward to seeing what they can do.

Check out Abrash's recent talk at the Steam Dev Days below for a first-hand look at his enthusiasm and commitment for a true virtual reality to emerge.




michael abrashid softwareoculusoculus rift





Latest Comments
Nerf Stormborn
Posted 06:23am 29/3/14
That basically sums up my thought after the initial first five seconds of surprise - It seems that VR is really going to happen now.

TIL I could be a VR expert.
paveway
Posted 09:18am 29/3/14
just for the record i liked the facebook idea before it became cool
Eorl
Posted 09:36am 29/3/14
And people were worried about employees jumping ship following the Facebook announcement. Bunch of knee jerk reactions I say.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 10:15am 29/3/14
If Facebook doesn't bastardise it. I will be happy, if they do I will be a sad panda.

Are there any people on the VR team who have strong ties with Hepatic feedback? This is an area that needs some serious attention to really bring VR to the next level.

eski
Posted 10:28am 29/3/14
abrash and carmack back together!

I guess this makes up for the whole Facebook thing. Slick move making the announcements in this order.
Whoop
Posted 11:04am 29/3/14
am I the only one who doesn't really care about this at all? I have no desire what so ever to strap my face into a mask and sit alone in the dark like some hermit afraid to go out in the world. Want realistic 3d environments? Try going out side.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 11:05am 29/3/14
Yes whoop.
demon
Posted 11:30am 29/3/14
whoop don't need no fancy schmancy face gear to sit alone in the dark. got that s*** sorted AMIRITE!?!? :D


tbh i am more interested in the oculus rift as a headset for fpv remote control flying than for gaming (though obviously i am still interested in the gaming aspect). there is a board out there now that allows you to use 2 cameras & 2 video transmitters on your r/c vehicle & view the feed in 3d on the rift. that's where i am headed.

i gotta admit i was a bit bummed when i saw that oculas was bought by facebook.. for the reasons parabol outlined in the other oculas sale thread.. but these new developments are looking a bit more promising.
Whoop
Posted 12:05pm 29/3/14
whoop don't need no fancy schmancy face gear to sit alone in the dark. got that s*** sorted AMIRITE!?!? :D
I've been sitting alone in the dark since the 90's. You're damn right I don't need no fancy pants face mask to do that.
BladeRunner
Posted 12:37pm 29/3/14
As if you don't want to be like this.
mlxJ3dx.jpg
Reverend Evil
Posted 12:47pm 29/3/14
I like the idea of VR but I don't like the idea of having zero visibility from people walking up behind me with an axe. I'll get into once they've made it perfect for something like a pair of glasses.
WirlWind
Posted 02:11am 30/3/14
Rev, don't piss off the missus and you won't have to worry. Simple :)
BOOST
Posted 10:34am 30/3/14
Good to hear some thoughts on the Facebook acquisition from someone respected in the industry.

It'd be cool if Facebook released the pitch they gave to the Oculus guys and the likes of Abrash. They all seem to know something about Facebooks plans that the public doesn't. Obviously they can't let all their competitors know what their plans are though so we'll have to wait and see.
parabol
Posted 12:15pm 30/3/14
It'd be cool if Facebook released the pitch they gave to the Oculus guys and the likes of Abrash. They all seem to know something about Facebooks plans that the public doesn't.

Well Carmack didn't at the time of acquisition. He posted this 20 minutes ago:

i-5VWXWBS.png
Audi
Posted 12:37pm 30/3/14


It'd be cool if Facebook released the pitch they gave to the Oculus guys.



Did you listen to the conference call?
cherocha
Posted 01:19pm 30/3/14
Did you listen to the conference call?

Sum it up for me?
cherocha
Posted 01:35pm 30/3/14
Sum it up for me?
ravn0s
Posted 02:22pm 30/3/14
from zuckerberg's facebook page:

After games, we're going to make Oculus a platform for many other experiences. Imagine enjoying a court side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face -- just by putting on goggles in your home.

This is really a new communication platform. By feeling truly present, you can share unbounded spaces and experiences with the people in your life. Imagine sharing not just moments with your friends online, but entire experiences and adventures.

These are just some of the potential uses. By working with developers and partners across the industry, together we can build many more. One day, we believe this kind of immersive, augmented reality will become a part of daily life for billions of people.
Audi
Posted 02:54pm 30/3/14
Sum it up for me?


CBF
Tollaz0r!
Posted 03:27pm 30/3/14
haha Surprise Carmack you work for Facebook now.
Phooks
Posted 04:59pm 30/3/14
Re the OP; I don't agree with his point about presence, it just sounds like immersion to me. I've been immersed in so many games, all the way from morrowind, mount&blade and STALKER, to a flash game with nothing but a text fireplace. You don't need graphics or VR or even sound for true, emotive immersion. It's what makes great books great.

Games that invest in graphics/sound quality/etc but get the immersion part wrong leave the user feeling hollow and unfulfilled. It's what's wrong with multiplayer games without the multiplayer. You can get as much 'presence' as you want, but it will get old, fast, without immersion.

Whats going to be the make-or-break gaming/interactivity for VR is the motion controls. I would put down $50 that people will be unhappy with how immersion-breaking the controls will be.
parabol
Posted 05:40pm 30/3/14
I don't agree with his point about presence, it just sounds like immersion to me.

I disagree.

I've been completely, 100% "immersed" for hours and hours in a game like Baldur's Gate - in that my mind was occupied with the content, characters, and relationships between them, etc. It's more of an emotional link with what's going on virtually in the world.

Presence is when your low-level senses are completely engaged, to the point where your immediate mental and motor responses mimick that of real-world stimulus.

For example, I fired up Quake with the Rift yesterday. I just stuck around the Start level (see below) and looked at the zombies nailed to the wall. S*** graphics by today's standards, virtually no story line, poor gameplay mechanics. I've also spent hundreds of hours in the game back in the day. However I was completely blown away by how freaky and realistic the wall zombies looked in VR despite all that - all because the perspective and response to my head movements matched what I would expect in real-life with my eyeballs. I seriously sat there for 10 minutes just looking around the lava pit without doing anything.

Never had that kind of moment before the Rift. Abrash is pretty much spot on about all the presence talk.

i-Q7jS9RB.png
Whats going to be the make-or-break gaming/interactivity for VR is the motion controls.

That is something I'd agree with. You see demos of people using that Omni treadmill in TF2 or trying to play other fast-paces FPS games. VR generally breaks down when, as mentioned in a previous post, you have a particular controlling mechanism suddenly (and rapidly) over-riding your head movements. It breaks the presence, among other things (such as causing motion sickness for some).
ravn0s
Posted 05:47pm 30/3/14
it wouldn't surprise me if facebook buys out a motion control company like omni or sixense.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 06:41pm 30/3/14
Step 1: Get your Oculus Rift.
Step 2: Wear it to sleep.
Step 3: wake up to gentle alarm at 3:00am whilst in VR.
Step 4: Experience VR half awake/half dreaming.
Step 5: Trippen balls!
Tollaz0r!
Posted 06:42pm 30/3/14
Yeah, presence in on the next level to immersion. There is a fundamental difference.
maRtz
Posted 07:17pm 30/3/14
Whats going to be the make-or-break gaming/interactivity for VR is the motion controls.


simply turn head tracking on or off.. Use it for suitable games, turn it off for others.


Problem solved... Next!
parabol
Posted 07:39pm 30/3/14
simply turn head tracking on or off..

... and completely lose all sense of presence, which is the whole point of VR.

May as well throw the goggles away and just view the game on a 3D monitor / TV if you're going to do that.
fpot
Posted 09:13pm 30/3/14
acid + rift will be so awesome it's hard to think about.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 10:42pm 30/3/14
Holy s*** balls. That would be Better Than Life.
WirlWind
Posted 11:41pm 30/3/14
fpot, I agree that being "altered" while using the rift would be incredible.

First thing I do when I get mine is rolling a joint and having a whack at something amazingly beautiful like War Thunder.

I'll probably spend an hour just doing lazy laps and going "holy s***" at everything.
cherocha
Posted 01:49am 31/3/14
acid + rift will be so awesome it's hard to think about.

Jebus. I remember playing some old school games while tripping balls and it was almost too much. I can imagine with the OR a moment or ten where you have to remove the headset and go lie down for a while. Either that or you just end up staring at something vaguely visually stimulating for hours. Can't wait to put that to the test.
RuleofBooKz
Posted 02:01am 31/3/14
Crakaveli
Posted 06:37pm 31/3/14
acid + rift will be so awesome it's hard to think about.


I played battlefield on acid once and that was too much.
fpot
Posted 06:41pm 31/3/14
Last time I had it I played the original Deus Ex and I got slightly disassociated and felt in the game. Was awesome. I'm looking forward to playing Prepar3D on the rift in that sort of mental state so badly.
Tollaz0r!
Posted 08:25pm 31/3/14
I played CS 1.6 on it once, myself and 2 other friends dominated the LAN cafe and had people calling us a cheats. Getting home that night was an adventure..


Don't do drugs kids, it's bad mmmkk.

last edited by Tollaz0r! at 20:25:29 31/Mar/14
Spook
Posted 09:26pm 31/3/14
when i used to get stoned and play q2ctf, id often forget which team i was on, coz i was colour blind and munted and run around blasting my own team for round after round.
cherocha
Posted 09:44pm 31/3/14
I played battlefield on acid once and that was too much.

BF1942 for me. I don't remember how I played, but the game world became legit for a good while, then I pretty much couldn't function when it was peaking.
Audi
Posted 10:07pm 31/3/14

BF1942 for me. I don't remember how I played, but the game world became legit for a good while, then I pretty much couldn't function when it was peaking.


Same experience for me but it was with Unreal 2004. Must have lost some brain cells that night.
parabol
Posted 11:30pm 31/3/14
6prfV2r.gif
Audi
Posted 11:39pm 31/3/14
Remember the Telethon where Carl was fairly pissed the next day live on telly.
greazy
Posted 12:42am 01/4/14
6prfV2r.gif

ahhaha this is awesome. got vid?
Creepy
Posted 01:01am 01/4/14
ITT: Cool people that take/have taken drugs
RuleofBooKz
Posted 01:45am 01/4/14
pft creepy have you ever met a cool person who hasnt taken drugs?
ravn0s
Posted 09:33am 01/4/14
ahhaha this is awesome. got vid?


Commenting has been locked for this item.
45 Comments
Show