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So this is Valve's VR headset

Jonathan Lester
SteamOS, SteamVR, Valve, Virtual Reality, Vive

So this is Valve's VR headset

Or should that be HTC's VR headset?

Ahead of their GDC presentation on 3/03 at 3PM (seriously, you'd better announce it now), Valve have revealed the headset that will support SteamVR. A cooperative venture with HTC, the newly-christened Vive is set to release this Christmas, compatible with SteamOS and a range of games to be released "soon."

Beyond a mean-looking aesthetic that vaguely calls Ghost In The Shell and Destiny to mind (note that the consumer version could well change in cosmetically), the Vive packs a 1200 x 1080 pixel screen for each eye and a refresh rate of 90 frames per second. High resolution and frame rate are critical for mitigating the effects of simulation sickness, so these premium specifications are music to our ears. And stomachs.

An onboard gyrosensor, accelerometer and laser position sensor that can apparently track head movements to 0.1 of a degree. You'll be able to sync up the Vive with two SteamVR base stations to track your location in a 15x15 foot grid, allowing you to leave your seat.

"Vive offers the most immersive experience of any VR package, plunging people into other worlds at a moment's notice. HTC and Valve have introduced a Full Room Scale 360 Degree Solution with Tracked Controllers, letting you get up, walk around and explore your virtual space, inspect objects from every angle and truly interact with your surroundings."

"HTC is also introducing new wireless VR controllers that will make you feel one with your virtual environment. The new HTC VR Controllers come in a pair and are designed to be so versatile that they will work with a wide range of VR experiences. Unlike typical game controllers, the HTC VR Controllers are simple and intuitive to use, helping everyone make the most of their experience."

It's an interesting move from the two companies, and it's great to see another big player enter the VR space. To become an industry rather than a passionate if niche community, Virtual Reality needs several devices and key players, all competing yet all providing a home for VR games while pushing the message that it's the Next Big Thing.

What about the games, then? Apparently a number of SteamVR titles will be arriving "soon," and presumably we might hear about one or two at Valve's GDC session. The one at 3:00 Pacific time. On the third day of the third month.

Come on, Valve. It's time to stop trolling and start the ball rolling.

Add a comment5 comments
Tsung  Mar. 2, 2015 at 12:34

Who do they design these things for?, I mean, who in the UK has a 15ft by 15ft space to "wander around in" with a VR headset on, with trailing cables (by the looks of it). It's a lovely idea, but houses aren't built in this country for this sort of space!

I'd rather they cut of the clever space wandering stuff and use that money to improve the performance of the headset, or reduce the price..

*Please note the disclaimer, in this country, I suspect Japan is similar. In the USA the houses have oodles of room I'm sure it wont be a problem.

Last edited by Tsung, Mar. 2, 2015 at 12:35
JonLester  Mar. 2, 2015 at 12:51

"Who do they design these things for?"

Guardians, I think.


Last edited by JonLester, Mar. 2, 2015 at 12:52
Lemming  Mar. 2, 2015 at 12:54

Wait till they announce it with a VR demo of Half Life 3 ... *breaks internet*

NostromoXP  Mar. 2, 2015 at 13:26

Hasn't it been said many times that HL3 could never be released without something spectacular to propel it to the front of the gaming industry?

VR-HL3 will certainly fit that bill, bring it on valve. I get my bonus at the end of march and I will gladly set aside £1000+ to get VR-HL3 running at the best it could possibly be.

googleberry  Mar. 3, 2015 at 09:43

Hardware platforms rise and falls by the quality and abundance of the software. No software = failed platform.

The kickstarter model can really help early adopting VR enthusiasts to sustain the VR hardware they have invested in by investing in the games they want in advance, rather than post development, encouraging development from the get go, rather than the old chicken and egg of "I won't make a game for the platform unless it is successful, and the platform doesnt succeed because of no games".

Valve are uniquely positioned because they are releasing a VR device in the context of the innovative passionate indie developer community which is the Steam environment. There is going to be plenty of opportunity for Valve to encourage VR support.

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