Field of View: The week in virtual reality - Disney says no to theme park VR

All the big news from this week in VR and AR
The week in virtual reality

This week belonged to Baselworld and all the new smartwatches and hybrids to come out it, but as ever there's been plenty taking place in the VR/AR space too.

We've explored the role of VR in the Age of Trump and how VR is changing Formula 1 for fans, teams and drivers. But we've also learned about how Apple's purported AR team is filled with veterans from HoloLens, Oculus and Dolby, how Samsung is planning a high-resolution Gear VR 2 and how the CaptoGlove is trying to change how you control VR.

Essential reading: The HTC Vive games you need to play

There's been a whole lot more, too. See for yourself.

Read this: News blips from the week

Field of View: The week in virtual reality - Disney says no to theme park VR

Disney says no to VR in theme parks

During an investor call this week, Disney CEO Bob Iger was asked about the possibility of Disney Parks investing in VR experiences. This is something Six Flags has worked on in the past, and Disney has dabbled in immersive technology, like 3D on Star Tours, in the past.

His answer? No. He's "exhorted" them to not bringing VR experiences to the parks. AR experiences, however, are a go-ahead. In fact, Iger started the investor call mentioning that he put on a helmet and used AR tech to have a lightsaber duel. Can't wait until that's in Star Wars Land.

Disney Research learns how to catch a ball in VR

While Iger isn't too high on VR in theme parks, his Disney Research division has made a breakthrough. They've developed a system that allows them to catch a physical ball while within a virtual reality environment.

The ball is outfitted with sensors that allow it to be replicated in the virtual world, and those sensors predict the trajectory of the ball and set a target point for when you can catch it. Disney says the system allows you to alter your strategy for catching the ball, so that you can see where it's going to land. They're essentially using the virtual world to improve physical reactions.

March Madness returns in VR

The exciting and exhilarating college basketball tournament is back, and it's back in VR. This year, you'll be able to watch a total of six games in VR; that's including the two Final Four semifinals and the National Championship game.

There are two tiers. There's a gold tier for $2.99 per game that gets you both courtside seats and a "fully-produced" VR experience with multiple angles (it's $7.99 for all six games), and there's a silver tier for $1.99 per game that's just courtside seats with CBS TV commentary.

You'll only be able to watch the games on your Gear VR, and the games are available on the March Madness VR app on the Oculus Store.

Fallout 4 VR is coming to E3

Bethesda's big VR news at E3 2016 was that Fallout 4 is coming to HTC Vive in 2017. For this year's show, Bethesda confirmed to Hip Hop Gamer that Fallout 4 VR will be playable on the show floor.

And that's not all. While Bethesda's Pete Hines doesn't play VR due to motion sickness, he said that game director Todd Howard told him that "Fallout 4 VR is the most incredible thing you've ever seen in your life." We imagine being fully emerged in an apocalyptic Boston would be pretty cool, but we need to try it out ourselves.

Play this: Ghostbusters VR: Now Hiring

This week, Sony Pictures and CreateVR launched the first chapter in Ghostbusters VR: Now Hiring, which turns you into the new member of the Ghostbusters squad. You're tasked with wandering around the ol' firehouse HQ, finding a ghost and capturing them.

The first chapter is $6.99 on PlayStation VR and features input from Ghostbusters producer Ivan Reitman. Patton Oswalt plays Moogie, your ghost guide through the game.

This isn't it for Sony Pictures either, as the film studio tells The Verge that this is the beginning of its plans to make future VR content based on its properties.

Watch this: Gorillaz's Saturnz Barz

Six years after Gorillaz' last album, the band has returned with Humanz and its lead single, Saturnz Barz. To promote that single, Gorillaz decided to the most Gorillaz thing possible and make a six-minute VR video in space, directed by Tank Girl co-creator Jamie Hewlett. You can watch it on YouTube with your Cardboard or Daydream headset.


Shop for VR headsets on Amazon

Oculus Rift
Oculus Rift
$499.99
PlayStation VR
PlayStation VR
$399.99
HTC Vive
HTC Vive
$799
Samsung Gear VR
Samsung Gear VR
$79.99

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