Movement in Virtual Reality

Human beings, like many other species, have been moving around on earth for hundreds of thousands of years. We have crossed rivers, forests, deserts and ice bergs in our quest for knowledge, survival, fame and pure adventure. Often started with a desire for something better, these ideas have been realised thanks to our ability to overcome obstacles using our physical bodies. This is a very hot topic in virtual reality games right now.

In this episode I will start to discuss the ways game developers are making it possible for gamers to move around in virtual reality games.I will reference some interesting games at the end that have been or will be released this year.

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Binaural Audio in Virtual Reality Games

The current state of Audio in entertainment

In cinema and games the use of visual and audio has been thoroughly studied and applied over the years. It is commonly known that the power of atmospheric songs and sound effects are crucial in horror films. I am sure that many of you have watched scary movies in great fear and have noticed that turning the sound off gives a totally different experience. Without sound we usually tend to be able to watch movies with a lower stress level and a lower heart rate, meaning we become less prone to being scared in typical jump scare situations.

Sound in computer games are a key component for creating an immersive experience where your actions match the visual queue. Traditional games played on a monitor or a TV have sound that usually emerge from a left and right speaker. This makes it possible to position sound over a horizontal scale when the game features stereo sound. Many games use e.g. 5.1 surround sound to play sound effects around you based on a more advanced speaker (or headphone) setup. Such a setup allow for more complex sound positioning using audio mixing to enhance your experience.

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Hand interaction in commercially available Virtual Reality systems

Physical and virtual correlation

As humans, one of our most important interaction devices with the physical world is our hands. Nowadays, when more users experience Virtual Reality (VR) for the first time one of the first reactions is to try and use their hands to interact with objects.

In this article I discuss the hand interaction device types of upcoming Virtual Reality Systems and how they match with what your brain expects.

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