Methods of movement within virtual reality (VR) has become a hot topic recently. A number of VR users have emerged who regard the teleportation methods that are common in VR titles to be lazy and are demanding more realistic forms of locomotion. Of course, this needs to be balanced against the needs of other players to avoid the dreaded simulation sickness. With this in mind, Oculus have added eight experimental new locomotion methods to its software development kit.
Oculus are encouraging developers to explore the new options. The company is careful to note that though some of the techniques in use might, at first glance, appear to be disruptive to immersion, players can quickly become accustomed to them, so the reduction of enjoyment is minimised.
There are a few various new types of ‘static world’ techniques, which offer users a static point of reference to counteract the movement of the rest of the virtual world. There are forms of ‘cockpit view, and the motion-controlled locomotion such as the one used in Lone Echo amongst others, as well as some more unusual and esoteric techniques, such as the curiously named ‘artificial tilt’ method, which apparently ‘departs from any notion of stasis’.
Most of the new techniques are quite difficult to describe in text without visual aids, but Oculus has released the source code for developers to test for themselves. The full list of new locomotion methods is here:
- Artificial Tilt
- Counter Optic Flow
- Unreal World Beyond Static Cockpit
- Process Reducing Relevance of Mismatch
- Ski-pole World Manipulation
- Portals into a Static World
- Window into the Moving World
- Emerging Static in the Periphery
Further information can be found on the Oculus blog.
VRFocus will continue to report on new developments in VR hardware or software.