• GIVEAWAY: Win A Physical Copy Of Co-Op Adventure Smash Hit Plunder On PSVR
    GIVEAWAY: Win A Physical Copy Of Co-Op Adventure Smash Hit Plunder On PSVR

    Enter for a chance to win a free copy of Smash Hit Plunder on PSVR! This will be a free physical copy sent through the mail.

    The post GIVEAWAY: Win A Physical Copy Of Co-Op Adventure Smash Hit Plunder On PSVR appeared first on UploadVR.

  • IFL’s Arizona Rattlers to Provide AR Experience for Fans The team will license Imagination Park's XenoHolographic solution.
  • Escape H.H. Holmes’ Murder Castle In VR

    Navigate a booby-trapped hotel while evading the ‘Devil in the White City’ himself in this horrifying VR game. Next year will see the release of Martin Scorsese’s Devil in the White City, a film adaptation of Erik Larson’s 2003 novel detailing the horrendous activities of H.H. Holmes, America’s first recorded serial killer. Starring Leonardo Dicaprio

    The post Escape H.H. Holmes’ Murder Castle In VR appeared first on VRScout.

  • Rosetta Stone iPhone App Now Features AR Machine Learning

    The popular language-learning platform is even more intelligent with object recognition technology. If you’ve ever thought about learning a new language from scratch, but don’t have the time or money for an in-person class, odds are you’ve at least explored the idea of using Rosetta Stone. The education technology company has become the leader in

    The post Rosetta Stone iPhone App Now Features AR Machine Learning appeared first on VRScout.

  • Sundance 2019: Embody Tracks Movement To Center The Body
    Sundance 2019: Embody Tracks Movement To Center The Body

    Embody from Melissa Painter’s team at MAP Design Lab is being shown at Sundance 2019, featuring full body tracking with only a headset attached to the body.

    Embody’s “visual metaphors” help guide visitors back to their bodies. That might sound a bit abstract, but with no controllers or additional body attachments beyond a headset, the experience begins by freeing people of hand controllers or Vive Trackers.

    In a demo at an office in Venice, California, the team employed a very sensitive foot mat to hone in movement tracking combined with body movement data captured from a ZED stereo camera pointed at the play space. “By combining computer vision, neural net algorithms / cutting edge machine learning algorithms, the pressure sensitive mat and headset tracking, the system provides a virtual world responding to full body user inputs,” according to the company.

    We’re “thinking around how we use spatial computing as an opportunity to use technology to help enhance people’s relationship to their physical body,” Painter said. “Our goal with this was to create a shared experience where you are taken through a guided series of movements where I didn’t have to put anything on your body but a headset.”

    Pose estimation of multiple people shown on a nearby PC.

    In one of several scenes that are part of Embody, the player sees colorful petals floating all around above the ground. There’s a transparent outline of a human stepping forward and simultaneously raising both arms above the head.

    The project is an official selection at New Frontier Sundance 2019, and Embody was created in partnership between MAP Design Lab with lululemon Whitespace. It’ll be shown with Samsung Odyssey on Windows Mixed Reality.

    Sensitive foot pad for body input.

    As I start to move my arms I realize the petals around me move too, and I begin to understand that by repeating the movement of the character, as my arms swing upward the petals all around me will come to life and fly up. It is as if they are caught in the air around me by the wind of my arms cutting the air.

    Very quickly I begin to tune my movements to more closely reflect the transparent outline, and to my satisfaction the petals seem to fly up again and again in close relation to my movements. There’s a surprise at the end of the experience I don’t want to spoil too much for those who see it at Sundance, but suffice it to say there’s a powerful metaphor in centering oneself before reaching out to others.

    ZED camera for body movement detection.

    This is the same company behind MoveStudio on the Microsoft Store, an exploratory experience that starts with head movements and hand movement to manipulate the world around the player. That experience is available on Microsoft VR headsets while MAP Design Lab also built AR projects like HEROES for HoloLens and In Orbit for VR headsets, available now for free on Steam. The company is also working on Magic Leap prototypes.

    Painter is being very thoughtful in exploring the

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  • NetEase Games Reveals Western-Themed FPS Stay Silent, Sign up for Beta Test It'll only support HTC Vive.
  • HTC Vive Headsets Lineup Explained: Should You Wait For Cosmos?
    htc vive lineup

    HTC’s line-up of VR headsets is steadily growing. What’s the difference between the Vive and Vive Focus? What’s the Vive Cosmos? Which should you buy? Read on for our rundown of the current Vive line-up.

    HTC Vive

    Vive is a room scale VR headset powered by your gaming PC. At $499 it’s the most affordable headset in HTC’s lineup. It comes with two fully tracked controllers.

    The Vive cannot operate without a gaming PC, and won’t work on most laptops. It comes with two SteamVR “Lighthouse” base stations which must be set up in your room for positional tracking.

    Originally released in 2016 for $799, the OG Vive remains today as HTC’s entry level PC VR option.

    HTC Vive Pro

    Vive Pro is a premium model of the Vive, released in 2018. It has higher resolution panels for a sharper image with less “screen door effect”. It also features improved comfort and integrated audio.

    Pro supports the new SteamVR Tracking 2.0. This allows for more than two base stations to be used at once for even larger playspaces.

    It’s currently priced at $1399, or $799 for the headset only so you can upgrade from the standard Vive.

    HTC Vive Pro Eye

    At CES 2019 HTC announced Vive Pro Eye– a 2019 refresh of the Vive Pro adding eye tracking. This allows for better social VR and gazed based UIs, but more importantly it enables foveated rendering.

    Foveated rendering renders most of the view of a VR headset at lower resolution except for the exact area where the user’s eye is looking (detected with eye tracking). This allows for improved visual quality and/or performance.

    HTC didn’t reveal the price, but told us it will be launching in Q2 of this year.

    HTC Vive Focus

    Vive Focus is unlike any of the rest of the Vive lineup in that it is a standalone headset. It’s priced at $599, and for now mainly intended for enterprise.

    Standalone means that the computing hardware and storage are all built inside the headset. Focus doesn’t connect to your PC, other than for basic USB file transfers.

    It has two cameras on the front which perform inside-out tracking, so there are no base stations to set up or wires.

    The controller (there’s only one) is essentially just a rotational laser pointer. This severely limits the games available on the Focus compared to PC. However, HTC is working on 6DoF Focus controllers which may release in future.

    HTC Vive Cosmos

    Vive Cosmos is a PC VR headset launching later this year. Unlike the original Vive line it uses inside-out tracking, not SteamVR. In fact, the headset’s native platform isn’t SteamVR either- it’s the new Vive Reality System.

    Interestingly, HTC also suggested the headset could work with devices other than a PC, showing an image of a smartphone in the reveal video. The company will reveal more details “later this year”, but we expect this means it could be powered by a HTC smartphone.

    Which To Get? Wait For Cosmos?

    Since the Vive Focus controller is 3DoF-only and the product is intended for enterprise, we don’t recommend buying it yet. When

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  • Stay Silent Is A Western/Sci-Fi VR Shooter From The Makers Of Nostos, Beta Sign-Ups Launched
    Stay Silent Is A Western/Sci-Fi VR Shooter From The Makers Of Nostos, Beta Sign-Ups Launched

    Cowboys vs Aliens wasn’t even half the movie it should have been. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, don’t bother looking it up. It’s not a good movie. Anyway, VR might just be able to redeem this promising genre mash-up with Stay Silent.

    This is a western shooter in which players are cast as the sheriff of a small town. When an alien invasion threatens to destroy all you know, you take on the hordes. You’ll wield a mix of western firearms and alien technology, including stealth gear to help you get the drop on your foes. Expect the usual mix of VR shootouts hopefully with a few new twists and turns, then.

    Stay Silent is developed by NetEase Games, the same company that’s currently working on visually-stunning VR multiplayer game, Nostos. This has also got a multiplayer focus, though can be played in solo mode too. That said we’re not too sure on the game’s structure right now. NetEase hasn’t made it clear if there’s a single-player campaign in place or if solo play is just multiplayer with AI bots.

    To that end, there’s going to be a closed beta for the game pretty soon. It’ll run from January 24th – 29th. You can sign up to take place over at the team’s official Discord channel.

    We haven’t seen any gameplay yet but we’re sure to get a good feel for the game during the beta. There are a few screenshots showing the environment which are nicely detailed.

    Stay Silent will launch ‘in the coming months’ on HTC Vive. No word about official Oculus Rift and Windows VR integration just yet.

    Tagged with: Stay Silent

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  • AntiLatency Could Offer the Unrestricted VR Freedom You’ve Been Looking for VRFocus spoke with AntiLatency's CEO about the company's tech.
  • Beat Saber DLC: Dev ‘Needs More Time But We’re Working On It’
    Beat Saber DLC: Dev ‘Needs More Time But We’re Working On It’

    The saga of the first Beat Saber DLC installment continues. Developer Beat Games provided the briefest of updates on the pack this week.

    In short, it’s looking like the pack will take a little longer than expected. The studio noted on Twitter that it needed “some more time to work on it before it’s ready for release. It’s not that easy as we thought, but we’re working on it.”

    We’ll need some more time to work on it before it’s ready for release. It’s not that easy as we thought, but we’re working on it. 🙂 Stay tuned for more updates. 💪

    — Beat Saber (@BeatSaber) January 21, 2019

    Just under two weeks ago the developer said the DLC was coming soon. At the time, the studio cited issues with bringing the songs to PSVR as one reason for the delay. It’s not clear if that issue is still behind the holdup or there’s something else. Either way, Beat Games asked players to stay tuned for updates on the Beat Saber DLC.

    This DLC will be the first of three planned premium packs. Each will include ten new songs of a particular theme. Beat Games says they’ll cost around $9.99 each. Beyond that, the team is also planning to add more free songs to the game. It’s also working on extras for the PC version, including a custom track maker and multiplayer.

    Beat Saber is available now in Early Access on Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Windows VR. The full PSVR version launched last year and is already one of the headset’s most popular games.

    Tagged with: Beat Games, Beat Saber, Beat Saber DLC, rhythm action

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  • Downloadable Demo of Apex Construct now Available on Steam Plus the title has 50 percent off currently.
  • Free Apex Construct Demo Finally comes to Steam
    Free Apex Construct Demo Finally comes to Steam

    Yet to try out Fast Travel Games’ excellent 2018 VR adventure, Apex Construct? The perfect opportunity now awaits you.

    The Swedish studio today launched a free demo for the game on Steam. It supports the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and Windows VR headsets and lets you play through the first level. That should help you get to grips with the game’s first-person action gameplay. In Apex Construct, you explore a post-apocalyptic world ruled by warring AI factions. Using a trusty bow and arrow, you do battle with drones and solve puzzles.

    To mark the demo’s launch, the game is also 50% off on Steam this week, available for $14.99.

    This demo arrives shortly after Fast Travel revealed Apex Construct sold the best on PSVR. A tweet from CEO last week confirmed that 58% of the game’s sales have been on PSVR, with a further 23% on Steam. The Oculus Store took another 19%. PSVR has had a demo since May of last year which may have helped sales. It probably has something to do with the fact that Sony’s headset is thought to have the largest install base across all major headsets, though. PSVR has shifted over three million units.

    If you’re yet to play Apex Construct we definitely recommend giving the demo a shot. “Thanks to improved tracking and sharper visuals, the PC version of Apex Construct is a step up from its console counterpart,” we said in our review. “With full 360 degree turning, combat is a much smoother experience and smooth locomotion on the controller’s navigation options feels much better. While many of the original issues we cited still remain, they’re much more manageable when you’re not fighting the limitations of the platform. If you’re looking to play Apex Construct, PC is definitely the way to go.”

    Tagged with: Apex Construct, demo, Fast Travel Games, steam

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  • Applications are now Open to Join Digital Catapult’s CreativeXR Programme Interested applicants have until 17 February 2019 to submit their proposals.
  • A Fisherman’s Tale Review: A Perfect Storm Of VR Puzzling
    A Fisherman’s Tale Review: A Perfect Storm Of VR Puzzling

    I would have never pegged Innerspace as the one to crack the code. True, the Firebird series is a compelling exhibition of VR art, but who’d have bet on this small indie studio as the first to unify VR’s core pillars? To bring inventive, platform-driven gameplay, medium-rooted narrative and, above all else, arresting immersion all under one roof? Certainly not me, and yet A Fisherman’s Tale is exactly that.

    It’s a puzzle game, first and foremost, but not the kind that should repel lighter thinkers like myself. You play as a puppet, cozily confined to his lighthouse home. In the middle of your modest cabin sits a small model of your abode. Peer inside and, amazingly, you’ll see a smaller version of yourself matching your every move. Open a window and, sure enough, you’ll find yourself sitting in the middle of a larger version of your surroundings.

    Amazement ensues; try poking yourself from above with a giant finger, picking up objects from inside your model to bring into the world around you, or even throwing cups and lamps inside to make bigger versions of them. It all clicks. Innerspace bottles that raw disbelief you felt when you first put on a headset and realized that, against all odds, this works. But, crucially, A Fisherman’s Tale is no mere tech demo. It’s the real deal.

    Each of the four levels unlocks a new area of the lighthouse. Each of those comes with its own twist on that central innovation. This isn’t simply swapping tiles and pushing buttons in order; it’s genuinely stimulating puzzling. Early levels have you bending your brain to the breaking point as you reason your way through the model paradox. At one point you turn a hefty obstacle into a level-progressing key. Later on, you repurpose some seemingly useless furniture to reveal hidden secrets. Oh, and then you turn a fish into a taxi service. Brilliant!

    This is the kind of reality-defying gameplay that thrives in this medium. Better yet, there aren’t any unwelcome progression bumps. Each level gives you pause for thought but can be overcome without frustration. There also isn’t any half-hearted attempt wearing the invention thin; just before you might think you’ve seen all of the game’s tricks, it pulls something new on you.

    All of that alone would make A Fisherman’s Tale a must-see. But there’s also a core design philosophy that’s kept VR at the heart throughout. It helps it excel far beyond its brain-teasers.

    Though the tone is often light, the game’s themes are anything but. The model puzzles soon reveal themselves as a microcosm for wider topics about lineage and institutionalization and the metaphors don’t stop there. This is a game about a lost and beleaguered fisherman, don’t forget. But its dramatic heights are well-told and memorable. It favors a welcome subtlety and ambiguity in its story-telling that steers clear of the obvious cliches. You could even find something to relate to in the exploration of self-incarceration that’s fuelled by words of wisdom from unexpected allies.

    If anything, it’s warmer than you’d expect

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  • Review: A Fisherman’s Tale A wonderful marriage of narrative and puzzles, that’s just too short.