In keeping with the recent trend of major announcements from various companies like PlayStation and Xbox, Oculus hosted its sixth edition of Oculus Connect last week. Oculus Connect is an annual conference of industry movers and shakers that promotes collaboration to push the AR/VR industry forward.
Right out of the gate, one of the biggest announcements was the introduction of Oculus Link. Mark Zuckerberg announced that the owners of the Oculus Quest will now be able to hook it up to their gaming PCs and play any of the games previously solely available for the Oculus Rift.
With a simple software update and a USB-C cable, your Oculus Quest transforms into a VR machine that seems to do it all; providing a freely mobile device for a modest experience on its own while being able to handle more complex VR games when plugged in.
Live Mapping And AR Glasses
Facebook has openly expressed its involvement in developing AR glasses before. In 2017, Mark Zuckerberg explained that although they want it just as bad as we do, the technology is just not there yet and will probably take another 5 years.
Another project into the world of seamless AR, Facebook is trying to achieve what they call LiveMap. By using crowd-sourced data and visuals from mobile devices and AR glasses, LiveMap creates a multi-layered visual of the world, which will include mapping the inside of buildings, allowing us to interact with our surroundings through the use of AR or VR.
Do you remember Habbo Hotel or Second Life? Those games where you create an avatar and just go around talking to people and doing random stuff? Facebook Horizon is basically all that but with a greater level of creativity regarding its in-game activities. In Facebook Horizon, users can create their own worlds and activities, building communities along the way.
However, with this speculated amount of freedom, it seems that Facebook is going to have to seriously regulate the community, ensuring its safety and inclusivity.
We are one step closer to an entirely immersive VR experience! Facebook announced that early next year, users can do away with the bulky handheld controllers and instead let Oculus map out your hands and fingers.
This gives users a full range of movement and allows for more complex VR experiences. How awesome would it be to cast spells, defuse a bomb or perform surgery on your VR headset with your own hands?
If you, like many other VR enthusiasts, started out with Oculus Go before upgrading to Oculus Quest, then you are in for a treat. Oculus is transferring a whole bunch of games from Oculus Go to Oculus Quest. This means that players will be able to play their previously purchased games on their upgraded systems. Also, if you find one of your Oculus Go apps on the Oculus Quest Store, you can redeem that new version for free. This will only last until the end of the year so be sure not to miss it.
The wildly popular Vader Immortal is back for another episode. In this edition, Lord Vader instructs you on how to wield the Force while you explore his castle in Mustafar. Flinging people around with the Force and super cool lightsaber battles, let’s hope it turns out as good as the first one.
Medal of Honor: Above and Beyond gives players an immersive and authentic look at the action during World War 2 as a member of the Office of Strategic Services. Always on your toes, the trailer features some amazing-looking mechanics. Be the most badass soldier on the battlefield by catching a grenade in mid-air and throwing it back or pulling the grenade pin with your teeth. You can look forward to this addition to the Oculus Rift family sometime next year.
The world of AR and VR seem to be making steady strides forward. Although it seems inevitable that AR and VR will be an integral part of our daily lives in the near future, it is the gradual developments that are truly exciting.
Chelsea started playing video games at a young age and has since sunk deeper into the hole of geekdom. She dreams of one day studying pop culture for a living so she can watch Netflix all day in her pyjamas.