Those that own one of the development kits for the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) head-mounted display (HMD) have largely spent the last two years sampling experimental experiences and tech demos. There are a handful of large, AAA titles that support the tech, however. Arguably the biggest of these is Elite: Dangerous, Frontier Developments’ popular space exploration experience that launched late last year. Fans will know that, in recent months, the developer has struggled with Oculus Rift support due to several new software development kit (SDK) updates from Oculus VR that remove support for older versions. Despite this, the developer is ‘continuing to work’ to resolve these issues.
The team’s Michael Brookes recently said as much over on Frontier Developments’ official forums. “We’re continuing to work with Occulus [sic],” Brookes said, “and will let you know as soon as there is any conclusion.” Oculus VR is hoping to launch the first full production version of its SDK, 1.0, in December 2015. Titles that support this version of the kit will be compatible with the consumer Oculus Rift when it launches in Q1 2016. Hopefully, then, Frontier Developments will be able to incorporate SDK 1.0 in time for that launch.
Elsewhere, Brookes touched upon the upcoming support for SteamVR and the HTC Vive HMD. He stated that the integration, also expected to arrive next month, will include some bug fixes and tweaks for the overall VR support. “We’re also continuing to further improve the VR experience,” Brookes noted. “HTC Vive and Steam VR support will be added to both the 1.5 and Horizons Beta as well as various bug fixes and tweaks.” This update should arrive alongside the anticipated second season of content for the title, named Elite Dangerous: Horizons. The expansion will be adding major new features such as planetary landings.
VRFocus will continue to follow Elite: Dangerous closely, reporting back with the latest updates on its progress.