Field of view: The week in virtual reality - HTC Vive braces for Impact

All the happenings from the last seven days
Field of view: The week in VR

This week has seen a landmark court case for virtual reality come to a head, after years of building tension, Oculus and ZeniMax have finally gone to battle over claims the Rift was built on some of ZeniMax's technology, in a clash that could end in a significant payout from Facebook and a bit of a blow to the industry as a whole.

On the other hand, we also discovered a mask that lets you smell VR porn. Swings and roundabouts, really.

Elsewhere, we've further explored why the Oculus Touch controllers are so vital to the experience and learned how Magic Leap is interested in treating colour blindness. Valve's Gabe Newell also did a rare Reddit AMA, where he dropped some pretty significant hints about the future of the Vive.

In sum, it's all been happening, but what else has been going on in the ever-exciting world of VR and AR?

Read this: News blips and tidbits

Field of view: The week in virtual reality -

Doing good with the Vive

HTC has announced it's ploughing $10 million to push VR tech and content that will "create positive impact and change". The new program is called 'VR for Impact' and HTC says it wants to support ideas that "create the most powerful experiences to transform our world."

The company is working in hand with the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals by 2030 initiative, which sets out to support the world's impoverished and marginalised places. HTC is asking for people to submit ideas for the program, and plans to announce the first winners on 22 April, which is also Earth Day.

Driven to distraction

Like HTC, we're fascinated by VR's potential beyond games and movies, and one new way is making safer drivers. The Austrian automobile association has teamed up with Samsung to create a Drive VR app for learner drivers, reports Android Headlines. The app is centred around distractions while driving, and will show users how easy it can be to lose focus of the road - and the consequences it can have.

Second Life: VR Edition

Linden Lab, the creator of Second Life, is about to launch a new virtual platform called Sansar. It won't be one big shared world like Second Life - you'll jump from experience to experience, built from different creators - but it is made for virtual reality. Road to VR went eyes-on with the new game, and describes exploring a movie theatre streaming YouTube videos, an Egyptian tomb and a Hobbit-esque village - so quite a lot of variation. The game incorporates VR controllers, letting you interact with other people in these spaces, and sounds like the sort of shared VR experience we could really get onboard with. Creators can sign up right now, while the game will go public in the first half of the year.

Slow start for Daydream?

Google slashed the price of its Daydream View VR headset this week by $30, which was surprising considering how new it is - and naturally a signal that sales might not be too healthy. This was followed by a report in The Information claiming Google had told one of its partners that sales had so far been "disappointing". It's also reportedly asked some Android phone manufacturers to start bundling their own Daydream headsets with the handsets. We hope it pays off, as we really like Daydream and the promise the platform holds. Google's VR ambitions are really just getting off the ground.

Play this (soon): Rangi

Joining an already-strong lineup of Samsung Gear VR titles is a new puzzle adventure game called Rangi. A trailer for the game, which you can watch below, shows off an enticing world filled with ruins and vibrant colours; as UploadVR points out, it does indeed remind us a little of Ustwo's Land's End. The game will be arriving on Gear VR early 2017, which hopefully means very, very soon.

Watch this: Paint it Black in VR

In a virtual world, making space for a real drum kit is a thing of the past. Instead, as musician Emre Tanirgan demonstrates above, all you need to do is find enough space to wave your arms about, strap on a headset, and then go full Whiplash. UploadVR has more details about how Tanirgan build his virtual instrument.


Shop for VR headsets on Amazon

Oculus Rift
Oculus Rift
$399
PlayStation VR
PlayStation VR
$299.99
HTC Vive
HTC Vive
$599.99
Samsung Gear VR
Samsung Gear VR
$94.63

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