For players that just want to engulf in their gaming environment, VR has paved the way to immersive gaming experiences. Whether it is Overwatch or Resident Evil VII, or even an online casino for that matter, VR has a vital role in the future of the gaming industry. But what does it mean when it is said that gaming is becoming more ‘immersive’? What role does VR have to play in immersing us, and how is it revolutionizing the gaming industry? Let’s find out.
VR: The Next Generation of Immersive Gaming Experiences
If you are wondering, there is already an impressive catalog of VR games that will get you hooked. A great example of a VR game would be Superhot, which was released back in 2016. Everyone was raving about the game on its release, thanks to its innovative elements and mechanics. Later, the game was relaunched, but this time as Superhot VR.
How Superhot stands out from the rest of the First-Person Shooter (FPS) crowd is that the game primarily focuses on precision rather than speed. Time will only start moving when you do, and it will stop when you stop. This way, you can choreograph every gunfight – not like John Woo right away – but you will get there in time.
Trekkies could not wait to sink their teeth into Star Trek: Bridge Crew when it was announced. The game is literally every Star Trek fan’s dream come true. The game has everything that can make players feel as though they are really a part of the USS Enterprise. Using your VR headset, you can now navigate through countless galaxies, which was nothing more than a faraway dream before.
Other impressive VR titles include Arizona Sunshine, The Climb, Battlezone, and even Minecraft! Gamers finally get what they have wanted all along — they get the most immersive gaming experience possible with VR. Since gaming is all about encountering situations and challenges you would never experience in real life, you finally get to feel said conditions and problems with your own eyes instead of watching it all happen on a computer screen. With companies improving biosensing and graphics, this feeling will only get better with time.
On the other hand, you get a ton of interaction opportunities with VR games. No different from the real world, you will have to move your body, reach out with your hand and respond to stuff happening in front of you. You no longer need a controller or joystick to make all this possible in a VR game. Even though controllers are a lot better than before at reducing the line between what you experience in games and real life, they still cannot beat what VR has to offer.
VR Can Create Social Experiences in Gaming
VR has great potential in creating social experiences. For instance, a player with a VR headset is solving a puzzle. Only that player can see the virtual environment and its elements, and it is his/her job to communicate what is seen on screen with their team. With the information provided, it is the team’s job to figure out what needs to be done.
Of course, such collaboration and information sharing are nothing new, taking astronauts into account. In theory, the person who must go into space should know everything, including fixing the spacecraft if there is a problem. But if they are on a mission or on a spacewalk, then they will need people on the radio to help them out with instructions, making them just as important as the astronaut.
In gaming jargon, this is referred to as ‘asynchronous gameplay.’ It is when different users have different kinds of information, which they will have to combine by working as a team to solve a problem that lies in front of them. This makes it a fascinating concept for a social experience in gaming.
Combining this concept with VR will not only allow players to enjoy an immersive experience but will also enable different users to lock into a specific type of perception, while others around them have opinions of their own. This has led to the development of a whole new kind of gaming, where shared information is not accessible, and the gameplay works successfully because you must share information with other people around you.
A great example would be a bomb disposal game, where one person would be able to see the bomb and will have to describe it to the rest of the team. The team will then have to go through their manual, guiding the player in diffusing the bomb.
Potential of VR in eSports
As more VR applications pop up with each passing day, ranging from entertainment to healthcare, it is not difficult to see why the VR market is estimated to be valued at approximately $110 billion by 2025. By 2021, at least 1 in 4 households will own a VR headset.
Gaming was one of the very first markets to have embraced VR, and its audience is patient and forgiving enough to allow developers to take their time to perfect the technology. Slowly and gradually, the technology is becoming more accessible and affordable. Because the market has a lot of potentials, developers will keep taking at a dig at it.
Nowadays, it seems the latest trend is to combine esports games. Recently, Oculus added four games to its eSports Tournament. In September of 2018, players even competed in games like Sprint Vector, Echo Arena and The Unspoken, which are all popular titles in the gaming community.
Surprisingly, according to The Virtual Athletics League, VR esports has far more enormous potential than traditional gaming tournaments. The reason behind this is due to the player dedication and the higher return rate of players for VR events in comparison to traditional ones.
All in all, keeping the factors mentioned above in mind, it is safe to say there is a lot that is to be seen from VR gaming. For now, developers have barely scratched the surface, but in time, the VR industry will hit the stratosphere, and that is an undeniable fact!
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