For many hardware developers and game studios, virtual reality is the next big step for the gaming industry. In fact, multiple companies, including Sony, Microsoft, Oculus, and Valve, are all working feverishly to complete their VR projects. While those folks are working on the hardware, some game developers are working equally hard creating titles for the headsets.
However, in all the excitement, there’s one important consideration that’s taken a back seat, at least until now. It’s the topic of motion sickness, which is almost surely going to be a major issue once the first round of VR headsets launch to the public.
Likely in preparation for the upcoming gamer frustration over VR motion sickness, Valve’s Chet Faliszek told a crowd at EGX that if gamers experience motion sickness while playing VR games, it’s the fault of the game developer, not the VR technology.
“The idea that VR must get you sick is [bullshit]… As consumers and people in the community, hold developers to it. They shouldn’t be making you sick.”
“It’s no longer the hardware’s fault any more. It’s the developers making choices that are making you sick. Tell them that you don’t want that.”
Naturally, Faliszek was speaking mainly of Valve’s own VR technology, the HTC Vive, and not necessarily of the devices in development at Sony, Microsoft, and Oculus. In fact, Faliszek pointed out that the reason gamers shouldn’t get sick with the Vive is HTC’s lighthouse tech, which will allow gamers to move around a 5 by 5 meter space. That normal human movement while playing should help reduce any motion sickness, according to Faliszek.
The same can’t necessarily be said of the other devices coming to market since they’ll be using more traditional gamepads and controllers, though chances are Oculus, Sony, and Microsoft are all working diligently to diminish any motion sickness that may result from their devices.
While the topic of motion sickness may not be on the forefront of discussion online, it does seem to be on enough gamers’ minds that Faliszek decided to touch on it at EGX this weekend. It sounds like there were some people who expressed trepidation due to the potential for motion sickness. Faliszek shared:
“We have people come in who don’t want to do demos. In a party of ten people there will be someone who says, ‘I’m gonna be sick, I’m gonna be sick, I can’t do this.’ That expectation is based on either what they’ve seen before or what they’ve heard.”
If this is, indeed, a major concern for gamers, it will almost surely become major talking point for each of the VR hardware developers as they prepare to release their devices. Hopefully, though, each will focus on how they are doing their best to minimize motion sickness, rather than put down their competitors. We definitely don’t need new kind of console war in the gaming industry.
What do you think about Faliszek’s take on VR and motion sickness? Let us know in the comments.
Source: Game Industry