Many virtual reality (VR) companies are still choosing to showcase tech demos either along with or instead of full videogames at industry events at the moment. Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE), for example, continues to highlight London Heist, The Deep and Kitchen for the PlayStation VR head-mounted display (HMD) while Epic Games recently debuted its latest and most impressive Oculus Rift demo, Bullet Train. Even Oculus VR is still showing its Oculus Touch controller with The Toybox demo. But, when it comes to internal development, rest assured that ‘most’ of Oculus Studios’ work is going into full product.
Head of Worldwide Studios Jason Rubin confirmed as much at this week’s GamesBeat 2015. “Most of what we’re doing is products,” he explained. “[Oculus Chief Scientist] Michael Abrash gave a speech at [Oculus] Connect about the future of VR and he was saying how far we have to go and how each challenge from inner ear to eye to smell, all of these things about VR, they each have their own challenges and we don’t know how long it’s going to take and we’re working towards it and it’s this long journey. I live in the opposite world. I go to a developer and I say “You want to do a sports game? I want to do a sports game. Here’s your budget, here’s your timeline, we don’t know how the hell this is going to work, but I want football, basketball, baseball and hockey. Go.””
Rubin is of course referring to Sanzaru Games’ VR Sports Challenge here. It sounds intensive, but Rubin notes this method is having success: “And, amazingly, we’ve been able to do that; we’ve shown hockey, we’ve shown – on the screen – football. It’s amazing. You’re a quarterback, you get it, you pass the ball and you become the receiver and actually catch the ball. So it’s very, very much centred around making products, getting to products,” he concluded.
While we’re yet to see a strictly first-party developer emerge out of Oculus VR, the company has been working with plenty of well-known third-party teams such as Insomniac Games and Read at Dawn. VRFocus will continue to follow the company’s work in VR closely, reporting back with the latest updates from it.