The Baby Steps of Virtual Reality
With the development of virtual reality headsets from Oculus Rift to Microsoft’s HoloLens, the future of gaming looks a lot different than it does now. Instead of simply playing a game of Madden on a console, players will one day be able to step into the huddle in an immersive environment. While arguably still years away for mass public consumption, this type of interaction appears to be the future not only for gaming, but for education, training, and a number of other industries.
In the meantime, gaming companies are looking for ways to use the idea of virtual reality while the technology is still being developed. The best example comes from the world of online gaming where live Internet gaming has developed into one of the biggest trends in the marketplace.
As this site explains, there is a new trend in playing games of chance with live people. Instead of playing roulette against a computer with an automated system generating results, a live stream player could instead connect into a live computer. There they would not only play with a live dealer who, in the case of a popular game like roulette, would operate the wheel, but would also interact with live players as well in real-time. There are several benefits to this, primarily in that dealers that can keep players’ interest in the game thanks to enhanced social interaction. It also provides players with the excitement of a casino, but without having to travel to such a location.
This is very similar to the virtual reality trend in sports. As one outlet recently reported, a company called Virtually Live is trying to put people in the middle of sporting events. Users can see the field and the game playing out before them from any seat they choose in the stadium. Fans can also head down onto the field if they want.
The technology still has a few steps to go. Right now, the players are not those users actually see on the field, but digital representations of them. The company is also trying to acquire the right licenses, namely the English Premier League.
This idea has tons of applications as it gets improved. Think about instead of having to fly to attend the Super Bowl, simply putting on a headset and being transported there live. While that may be a ways away, fans might like to watch the game from an angle that resembles being in the stadium itself. They could easily prefer that to watching the game on television.
The idea is using virtual reality to take people places they normally cannot go. It’s a major step in both gaming and entertainment. If you look at this video from the NFL, football players already use virtual reality to train. The systems in use can give players, namely quarterbacks, a chance to run a practice or a game in the headset. That gives them extra mental reps.
It’s great to see how virtual reality tools are being used, but also novel concepts being introduced to new platforms. People love to talk about virtual reality of the future, but it is very much the present.