Thursday, October 20, 2016

Virtual Reality is Real (part 4)

After finishing the “VR Worlds” passive experience of Ocean Descent, I decided to try "London Heist." This felt very much like an immersive movie and video game combined. In one of the early scenes, it began with me seated at a table in a smoky bar. I was using the two "move" controllers, and I had two hands in the game that I could move like my own to pick up and manipulate objects. In front of me was a cigar and a lighter on the table, so I picked the cigar up in my left hand and the lighter in my right. I clicked the trigger on my controller (I think it was the trigger--I don't remember which, it felt so natural) and the lighter lit with a flame that I used to light my cigar. Then, I pulled my left hand close to my face and breathed in--the embers on the cigar glowed. I then blew out onto the air, and the microphone on the VR headset translated that into smoke blowing out of my mouth in VR! I was smoking a cigar, without the risk of lung cancer! Shortly after this, a man showed up and sat at my table, talking to me about a jewel heist. I felt like he was right there—the physical presence was almost palpable. His cell phone rang and after answering it, he said it was for me. I reached over and took it from him, and when I instinctively held it up to my right ear, I could hear the voice of the other guy on the line, in my right ear! The 3D audio in VR is impressive! Later, I picked up a handgun in one hand, smacked a magazine into the handle with my left hand, and began shooting with amazing pinpoint accuracy at bad guys on motorcycles outside the van as an incredibly life-like VR character drove. I even leaned out the window and looked behind the van to see more bad guys coming, but in reality I was staring right at the back of my couch. The weirdest thing is, when I touched my couch, I actually thought there was some kind of invisible object I'd bumped in the game!

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