When we rewind, even to the dawn of the millennium, computers and modern technology were only really finding their feet. No one could have imagined how far we would have advanced within just twenty years. From the graphical capabilities of the Playstation 1 and the original Xbox, which are characterised by stiff movements and an extremely pixelated user experience when you play them back now, it’s impressive to think that we now can completely shut off from our own reality and immerse ourselves in fantastical 4K worlds beyond all comprehension.
So, let’s take a look at how Virtuality Reality (VR) works.
Virtual reality works by simulating the field of sight. Headsets place a screen (or sometimes two) in front of the eyes, which removes our awareness of the real world. Seeing as everyone’s head shape and eyesight is different, there are two autofocus lenses fitted between the eyes and the screen – these are adjusted to suit individual needs. To run apps and games, the screens are connected to either a computer or a mobile phone.
It’s all well and good having a well-optimized headset that offers a high frame rate (at least 60FPS) and a wide field of vision (typically between 100° and 180°), but if you don’t have a high-quality set of headphones, then the illusion will fail before it begins.
With audio taken care of, your motion needs to be tracked. This is done through various hand controllers, varying from manufacturer to manufacturer. This will convert your real-life actions into the world of VR, allowing for a truly immersive experience.
Now that we know the absolute basics laid out, let’s take a look at some uses for VR within the vast world of gaming.
The most obvious hazard of using virtual reality is the lack of awareness of the real world. It has been known for people to walk into furniture, fall over and hurt themselves. There are already VR mats that offer a sense of direction and allow users to center themselves in an attempt to stay out of harm’s way. However, accidents still happen because games allow people to traverse further than the edge of the map – and with great engrossment comes great accidents. Microsoft has reportedly put in for a patent to produce a vibrating floor mat that would limit the playing field and track users’ movements.
Further than basic controllers and using your legs to move within VR worlds, you can invest in purpose-built VR gaming chairs. The chair connects to the computer and allows users to sit down and explore the virtual world effortlessly, as the chair rotates in sync with the head’s movements. This is a fantastic development, especially for people with mobility issues who may not be able to stand up.
Now it’s time to look at a couple of real-world applications.
Virtual Reality Jackpot
When people think VR, they often associate it with first-person shooters and exploration-type games. However, it can be used to bring the world of casinos straight to the comfort of your home. Although there are already countless online casinos out there, like Casimba, that are capable of filling your gambling desires, people are looking to experience a more socially involved casino. Luckily, VR can do just that, you can be transported to a fully simulated world and feel yourself slip away from reality. You can become whoever you want to be by choosing the perfect avatar and you can explore a different world filled with other virtual people – therefore fulfilling the social aspect of the casino experience.
Classrooms are already filled with technology like iPads, state-of-the-art computer suites, and other smart equipment. However, with advancements in technology, schools must move forwards to keep with the times and implement current technological trends to keep children engaged and submerged in their learning. The use of VR in classrooms holds multiple benefits, it can allow children to touch the world outside of the walls of the school without physically having to do so – this can be especially beneficial to students who aren’t able to see places because of disabilities. Further, there are numerous developers out there already creating invigorating instructional games to support learning, the applications of VR are only bound by the imaginations of creators.
As you can see, virtual reality technology has already taken off the ground significantly. If the last couple of decades are anything to go by, then expect a lot of advancements to VR in the not-so-distant future. The state of VR is a long way off the virtual game world of the popular book and film by the same name, Ready Player One, but it isn’t out of the realm of realistic expectations of the future.