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The future of gaming: A (virtual) reality check

Many people consider Virtual Reality the next step in the evolution of video gaming. But what is it and how does it work?

The gaming console has gone through a major evolution in the past decade. Originally seen as a device for kids to enjoy their downtime with friends, it has become an important part of the living room for many family members... both young and old!

With streaming services, built-in media players and the ability to connect to the Internet, it is easy to see why these consoles are finding their way into many a living room.

Gamers now have the ability to connect with players from all around the world, with “connected gaming” changing the game-play experience and influencing how developers create them. 

Connectivity was a huge step forward in “immersive gaming” as well. Entire virtual worlds now exist within games, and players are able to connect with other gamers and work with or against them to achieve gaming glory. 

Virtual Reality: the next level of Immersive gaming

Often seen in movies, Virtual Reality (VR) has always been a vision for the future of computing. The ability to put on a headset and be transported to any point in a virtual world at any time has been an exciting prospect for many people, especially gamers.

Realism is an important factor in many gaming types, and the ability to immerse gamers into a virtual world has been the Holy Grail for many developers.

The problem has always been the technology has never really been able to match the vision. 

What is Virtual Reality?

Virtual Reality, in its simplest form, is a three-dimensional image that is created by a computer. The most common form allows the user to interact with the image using devices like goggles, clothing or gloves.

While early examples of VR exist, it wasn’t until the last couple of decades that the technology started to make significant advances.

The major issue with VR in the past was the challenge of creating an image that felt significantly lifelike.

Previously, when you turned your head to look at something on the screen, VR goggles took a while to register and move. In come cases, this resulted in players experiencing motion sickness.

Now with screen technology, developers have been able to create more lifelike images and advancements in processing speeds have helped developers create software with less latency and delay.

Watch what happens when two families who have never met are brought together by their passion for gaming.

The next step in VR

Perhaps the biggest step forward in VR was when Palmer Luckey invented the Oculus Rift in his parents’ garage. The VR headpiece has been through numerous iterations over the last couple of years and was recently bought by Facebook for $2 billion.

The Rift has arguably done the best job of creating a lifelike experience with the least amount of motion sickness. This has rekindled people’s love for VR, and in turn inspired the creation of other devices.

Sony is dipping its toe into the VR world with its own product “Project Morpheus”, while many other gaming companies have started to create software specifically for VR.

While VR is becoming a larger part of the home entertainment, it is also facilitating entertainment outside the home. There are also hubs popping up globally that are free-roam virtual reality experiences. 

Melbourne-based Zero Latency is an example of this type of VR gaming experience. A group of friends can roam around a room using a VR headset and be completely immersed in the digital world.

Given the rapid advancements in the world of gaming, it won’t be long before we can control games with sensors on our body instead of using traditional game controllers - the possibilities are endless!

The ability to be able to interact with these virtual worlds may well be determined by your broadband connection. Check your address to see if you can connect to the nbn™ network.

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