Mod of the Week: Defenders of Ardania

There has been a lot of talk about bringing strategy videogames to virtual reality (VR) lately, and whether the genre could really work with head-mounted displays (HMDs) like the Oculus Rift or Project Morpheus. Of course, building an empire through in-direct commands and menu systems is not the first thing that springs to mind with thinking about ‘VR’, but as videogame enthusiasts there’s always room to experiment. Which is exactly what VRFocus did for this week’s edition of Mod of the Week.

A number of different strategy titles were trialled for this week’s Mod of the Week article but coming out on top was the tower defence/real-time strategy hybrid Defenders of Ardania. This was mainly due to the fact that it’s smooth scrolling offered the perfect compliment to the Oculus Rift’s motion-control; the player simply needs to turn their head in the direction they wish to pan the camera and they can quickly pan to another area. This works so well in fact, that it offers a reasonable template for future strategy videogame developers to work from when playing their VR integration. Below follows the easy steps to achieve this Oculus Rift compatibility via the use of Tridef 3D.

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Set-Up

Before beginning the below process ensure that you have the latest version of Defenders of Ardania installed. The Tridef 3D injection driver can be downloaded from the official DDD website and used for 14 days without requiring payment. An in-development Oculus Rift compatibility add-on can then be downloaded from the official Tridef 3D forums. Ensure that both of these assets have been downloaded and installed correctly before attempting to run Defenders of Ardania on an Oculus Rift headset.

Load Tridef 3D Ignition and select ‘Add Game’. The client will automatically detect your installation (in the unlikely case that it doesn’t find Defenders of Ardania, simply select ‘Add Game Manually’ and follow the on-screen prompts, selecting a ‘default’ profile for the videogame). Once added to the Tridef 3D Ignition launch window, boot Defenders of Ardania from within this client.

The videogame will automatically launch in stereoscopic 3D with headtracking enabled. In the case of Defenders of Ardania, the headtracking replicates the mouse movement, however it’s best played with the head movement used for camera panning and the mouse cursor for micromanagement and menu selection within the centre of the map.

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