A Quick Guide to Virtual Reality and VR Games
Despite popular belief, the concept of Virtual Reality has been around since as far back as 1962. From Heilig’s Sensorama and Sutherland’s Sword of Damocles to VPL’s DataGlove and Nintendo’s Virtual Boy, the world of Virtual Reality has come a long way.
What is Virtual Reality?
Virtual Reality is the next step toward how we interact with digital media. It is an artificial environment that completely immerses users in it and allows them to interact with their surroundings via specialized equipment. A simple VR headset is usually sufficient, but dedicated controllers and trackers are also used in some applications.
Virtual Reality (VR) Games
Although virtual reality has opened up a world of endless possibilities, it has in particular, taken the gaming industry by storm. The lines between reality and fantasy have now become blurred since players can practically live inside the worlds they so fantasized for!
But it’s not just for entertainment – Virtual Reality is also used in education as well as economics.
What is a VR headset?
In order to play VR games, players require VR headsets. It is a device worn over the eyes, that transports users into a simulated 3D environment, allowing them to interact with digital content as if it were real.
As of today, there is a wide variety of headsets in the market that supports an equally wide variety of VR-supported games catering to almost every type of gamer.
Types of VR Headsets
There are generally 3 types of VR headsets: Tethered, Standalone, and Mobile.
1. Tethered VR headsets
By far, Tethered VR headsets provide the most satisfying virtual reality experience. However, they need to be connected to a PC via a cable, which considerably limits a user’s movement in the area. Also, they are the most expensive of all 3 VR headset types. Oculus Rift and Vive Focus 3 are 2 such examples.
2. Standalone VR headsets
Standalone VR headsets, on the other hand, do not require any cable and thus offer more freedom of movement. However, compared with Tethered VR headsets, Standalone headsets have limited processing power which may diminish user experience. Oculus Quest and Lenovo Mirage Solo are 2 such examples.
3. Mobile VR headsets
Lastly, mobile VR headsets are the most portable of all as well as budget-friendly. Users can practically use it anywhere as long as they have their mobile phones attached to it. Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream are 2 such examples.
Note: Some people consider AR (Augmented Reality) as part of Virtual Reality, however, these are not the same thing. Where VR completely replaces the physical world with a digital world, AR superimposes digital elements on top of physical objects.
VR games offer a level of immersion and engagement that traditional gaming simply cannot match. Though the tech has matured, it is still far from perfect. When used for extended periods, the majority of users feel motion sickness or eye fatigue. However, neither of them is permanent and subside after a couple of minutes.
Hopefully, in a couple of years ahead, we can see its widespread adoption as well as improved performance. What do you think? Share your thoughts with us and let us know in the comments below!