Virtual Reality is not a new technology, but one that has advanced drastically over the past few years. With the new release of the HTC Vive, virtual reality has jumped into a whole new level with the most advanced system ever sold to this date. This system offers up the ability to look around in all directions, walk around any scenario you put yourself into, and wirelessly control and interact with objects around you. With this ability alone, the HTC Vive has separated itself from any other VR system. Its technology gives people the ability to literally step into an alternate world and function as if they would within their own.
With this new technology and all its capabilities, we find that its only downfall is the space that it takes up. For its $800CAD price, the HTC Vive offers a motion tracking headset (which is quit heavier than any other headset on the market),two wireless controllers, two small whirring laser emitting boxes (these are used to scan your room and create the boundaries for your motion), earbuds, mounting brackets, power adapters, and a lot of cables to connect it all.
Because of everything that comes with the system alone, you know right away that you will need space- lots of it. The company alone suffuses a 6 foot by 5 foot area for any activities involving the HTC Vive. This gives you space to comfortably set up your system and be able to move without getting hurt.The downfall of this though, is not everyone has this much open space, so you end up taking your living room apart and stacking furniture by the walls just so you can play.
The HTC Vive will as well require a lot of power outlets. A total of 5 outlets is recommended to easily plug in 2 controllers, 2 base stations a the bridge that connects the headset to a PC (which also needs to be plugged in and already functioning).
Using The HTC Vive
Once you finally have the HTC Vive all set up and ready to go (with a few drinks in because it takes a lot of time and work) the next step is picking a game and putting on your headset. As the head peace is not light, it is suggested that you try to get someone to help you put it on so it is comfortable. Also, make sure to keep the wires comfortably placed around you as to not trip and fall on any of them during your first big run..
When setting up your first game, try going for one that won’t involve to much movement, like dunking, running from wall to wall, ect. Though the headset has a built-in-front-facing camera that is meant to warn you if you’re getting close to anything, it doesn’t always help with objects at your side. Maybe try to have someone close by for the first little while to stop you from falling flat onto your ass.
Aside from sudden movements, the HTC Vive keeps it completely comfortable to move your arms as much as you need. The controllers are light and fit into your hands well without putting to much weight or pressure on you.
When switching games, if you are alone, try to sit down onto the floor first as to put down your controllers and than remove your helmet. It gets hard to fumble each accessory around when there is nowhere around to sit it down. But, if you are switching turns with a player its great and easy. You do also have the option of switching games from within your helmet if you need.
Overall, aside from the weight of the helmet and the room you need to use this system- it really is worth it. It is without a doubt the best technology out there when it comes to Virtual Reality and gaming. Its capabilities and technological revolution of VR is alone a reason for it to be celebrated and used by all. Though the price is quit steep, for what it offers I would say it is worth the jump.
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