You'll Probably Suck At Oculus Rift Games

Virtual reality is... different. It takes some getting used to. When I first tried the Oculus Rift last year, I found that even the most basic actions in games I tried — looking around, movement — were way harder than I was expecting them to be.

Thing is, I'd built a certain muscle memory with buttons that prevented me from simply jumping into a game. It's the sort of skill that assures I can pick up most games with some ease — but not virtual reality games. With some practice, I was able to perform basic actions in the game I tried, but even so, it felt like I was learning how to walk again. It was eye-opening and a bit humbling — and reminded me that I should be kinder when someone new to games has difficulty picking something up. It also made me a bit terrified about trying more Oculus Rift games, because lets be real, nobody likes sucking at stuff. That's a recipe for frustration. (Obviously, though, I'll still try more Oculus Rift games — I'm just being honest in my initial reaction to them!)

PBS Game/Show delves into why it's likely most of us will have trouble, at least initially, with Oculus Rift games. We're not ready for it just yet — and developers know this. Funnily enough, folks who have played games all their life may find themselves getting owned by complete newbies in virtual reality games. Thankfully, as they say, practice makes perfect — we're all bound to get our "VR legs" in due time.

Why You're Going to Suck At Oculus Rift and Virtual Reality | Game/Show | PBS Digital Studios [PBS Game/Show]


    I think the general rule of thumb is if you got your ass handed to you at Wii Sports you'll suck at VR games. =P

    The interesting thing for me would be to grab a younger version of myself and hook him up to VR, to see if the addition of physical movement was enough to switch me from my games mindset where I was always open to improving my skills to my sports mindset where I essentially just considered myself defeated and beyond repair. Later in life outside of school I discovered less directly competitive sport and a way to come at exercise from an angel that I really enjoy so it would be interesting to see if I could use a crossover like VR to spark that.

    I've been using stereo 3d for years and the added depth perception is a huge advantage, and I think the article author might not have spent time finding a control scheme that works well for him.

    Enh. You'll suck until you learn it. Same as any gaming, really. Most kids these days grew up using a mouse, they're growing up with touchpads for chrissake, but you ever been to one of those adult computer education sessions they run in libraries and city councils for the elderley to 'get into the Internet'? There's a staggering degree of difficulty some folks have in learning to translate the movement of their hand on a mouse or keyboard into the visual activity on a screen.
    But they learn.

    Like the link says, it'll be the same with VR.

    Last edited 07/03/14 11:06 pm

    If OR games are made with head motion turning the character I'll hate them, if they turn the view independent of the character body as if the character is turning their head... well I've been used to that for 13 years since operation flashpoint came out

      There are a number of control schemes, that is how one of them works.

    The best OR games out *RIGHT NOW* are all vehicle simulation IMO. Once you start investigating what's out for Rift Right Now, you realise It takes a lot of effort to polish a game to work well with a VR headset unless game's model works naturally with it.

    All the games I've found to be good with the Rift work well with controller or HOTAS control schemes both with and without the OR, and the only real translation is going from having to stuff around with thumb/hand controls to move your viewpoint, to actually just being able to turn your head.

    Whilst a lot of people are looking forward to first person stuff in the Rift, I think that'll be the hardest area to refine sufficiently.

    You want good rift experiences? Lunar Flight. War Thunder.
    You want adequate rift experiences? Hawken.

    All of the above have 3D cockpits, which helps you naturally find your "forward" direction easily. Hawken's only adequate as the HUD overlays are a little large for the view area and obscure your view a little.

    Perspective shifting a HUD into 3D space (which is what Strike Suit Zero & Vendetta Online do) really doesnt' cut it and looks very wrong when you turn your head. Minecrift's "fixed" HUD (it actually translates correctly as you turn your head rather than just perspective shifting) works a little better for me, but it's still uncomfortable as I find you have to scan with your head to find information - at least I can navigate with it though.

    I have yet to try Surgery Simulator (hah!) or Probably Archery - but their control schemes are difficult by design - I'm sure they'll be more amusing hard with the rift + hydra. :)

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