In This Article, We Take A Look At Different Angles Of Virtual Reality, From The Concept Of This Technology And Its Headsets To The Best Virtual Reality Games In Recent Years.
Until five years ago, perhaps few people predicted that virtual reality would reach such a position in the gaming industry that fans of the Half-Life series would turn to the game in the form of virtual reality after a long wait to experience a new version.
Few people guess that this part of the video game market will reach a point where on the one hand, we will see all kinds of headset models offered by different companies and on the other hand, Sony as one of the three sides of the console triangle will provide not only products for virtual reality enthusiasts.
Instead, think of a more advanced model for your next-generation console.
Of course, many still do not have full confidence in the future of virtual reality and consider it a passing wave, but evidence shows that the situation is improving day by day and the future of this market looks more attractive than before; however, we are still far from reaching the ideal point, and still, a large percentage of gamers do not have the ability or interest to use virtual reality headsets.
Here we will look at different angles of virtual reality, from its history to the present day to its applications and types, and of course, other related examples such as augmented reality and augmented reality.
What is Virtual Reality?
The concept of Virtual Reality (VR), in its simplest definition, is the simulation of a world separate from the reality that allows the user to enter a space different from his surroundings and have the desired experience; An experience that can be entertaining, scientific and educational, medical and service and …
To enter the virtual reality world, the user must put his head inside a case or headset to enter this new world with the help of special lenses placed in front of his eyes; A world that could be a video game, cinematic experiences, a virtual tour of a museum or even surgery.
Although there are different types of virtual reality, in the most common case, you can move your head to look at different angles of the desired effect, and this issue makes sense of presence in another world well transferred to the user and separate him from the surrounding space; The higher the quality of the headset and related technologies and, of course, the hardware used with the headset, the better and more completely it is transmitted.
To get more acquainted with the world of virtual reality, it is better to look at its history and look at the efforts of experts in different time periods.
We must point out at the outset that virtual reality has a very long history, dating back to long before the gaming industry. But one of the first creations that were more or less close to today’s virtual reality was introduced in 1962.
The device, called the Sensorama, was a product of Morton Healing; The technician and filmmaker who in the 1950s came up with the idea of offering a different experience that could immerse the audience more and more, and a few years later, he achieved his goal to some extent with the design of Sensorama, albeit in a rudimentary way.
Sensurama was never marketed in bulk, with only prototypes accompanied by five short films, including videos of car racing, airplane flight, and city motorcycling.
An image of Sensurama next to its original design
By placing his face inside the sensor housing, the audience felt like he was behind the wheel of the vehicle in question, and at the same time, elements such as wind (by the built-in fan in the device) and noise, and even smell were designed for it to the real and virtual world. Well, combined and present virtual reality fascinating (compared to that time).
Sensurama was one of the first devices to display an atmosphere of virtual reality, albeit much more rudimentary than it is today.
Later, virtual reality gradually became more advanced, and newer and more complete models were produced daily. However, most of them were used not for entertainment but things like medicine and flight simulation.
But as the video game market gained strength, companies in the industry also began to think about using the hype, and Atari was one of the first to do so; company, which operated in both the arcade world and with the launch of the Atari 2600 console, was able to achieve great success in the home console market.
Atari engineers, led by Scott Fisher, 1982 came up with the idea of creating a virtual reality experience through the company’s arcade; Years later, Fischer recalled Atari’s great achievements in this field and regretted that they did not reach their final product in that field at that time.
The reason for the project’s failure was the collapse of the US gaming industry in 1983; An unfortunate period in the history of video games that caused the industry market in the United States to collapse and fall from $ 3.2 billion in 1983 to $ 100 million in 1985, and many companies, including Atari, are in big trouble. Encounter.
Scott Fisher and the Atari Virtual Reality Prototype
Apart from the Atari story, the 1980s were significant in other respects for virtual reality, and it was in this decade that Grennier developed the concept of virtual reality in its present form; A computer engineer who, after leaving Atari, founded VPL Research in the mid-1980s as one of the first professional manufacturers of virtual reality products.
At that time, he and his colleagues started to produce innovative and timeless products, the culmination of which can be considered EyePhone.
The EyePhone provided the audience with a combination of a special glove and a virtual reality headset (which was very similar to today’s headsets). It introduced them to a virtual world that had control over various objects.
However, due to the technical limitations of the time, the demo that was prepared to display the EyePhone features was very slow and ran at 5 to 6 frames per second; An issue that did not convey an enjoyable feeling to the audience, and on the other hand, the price of the whole set (headset, gloves, and computer needed to run the program) reached 250 thousand dollars, which was not acceptable even for many companies, let alone To the average audience.
Eventually, the ambitious nature of the project and its high cost, along with its drawbacks, led VPL Research to bankruptcy very early in the 1990s. Linner, despite being a pioneer in virtual reality, did not get the pay he deserved.
About a decade after Atari failed in virtual reality; it was Sega’s turn to try its luck. The company’s US-based engineers, who planned to launch the Sega VR headset for both the Sega Genesis home console and arcade devices, officially introduced it at CES in 1993 and were expected to do so by the end of that year or early 1994. Entering the market for $ 200, in addition to its four exclusive games, it also uses other games such as Virtua Racing to provide a virtual reality experience.
But the Sega VR project never reached the final production stage for various reasons. One of Sega’s weirdest excuses for stopping the project was that playing with this headset is so realistic that it could hurt its audience, especially children, and cause them to crash into the real world by drowning in the game!
But the main reason can be considered technical limitations in some people who tested the Sega VR, causing headaches and motion sickness (Motion Sickness). Later, people like Tom Kalinsky, CEO of Sega America, referred to this issue…
Of course, this was not the only effort of Sega in those years, and the Japanese branch of the company also went to virtual reality and was more successful in this field.
Instead of targeting the home market, they put all their energy into arcades and amusement parks. With the Mega Visor Display or MVD headset launch, they achieved great success; Especially in amusement parks where Sega special devices offer unique experiences in this field.
MVD (right) and Sega VR
While Sega did not offer a home virtual reality headset at the time, their big competitor, Nintendo, tried its luck, albeit in a different way. In 1995, Nintendo launched a bizarre console called the Virtual Boy, which was supposed to bring gamers into the virtual world with its own headset, giving them the pleasure of experiencing the company’s popular works more deeply than ever.
Of course, VirtualBox differed from the full concept of virtual reality in that it did not mention the movement of the camera relative to the angle of rotation of the head. Still, in any case, it was part of the virtual reality subset, and even its original code name was VR32.
Although Virtual Scent, unlike Sega VR, reached the production stage and entered the home of fans, it was a failure for Nintendo, which was unprecedented until that day and will not be repeated later; So that only 770,000 units were sold, and today few people mention this red console.
There were several reasons for this, from the not-so-attractive games unlike other Nintendo consoles to the annoying graphics of the games that came in red and black, and the way the console was used so hard that it cost up to $ 200; Compared to a popular console like the Game Boy, which came with only $ 60 with a version of Tetris.
Virtual Console Scent
After these failed attempts at virtual reality in the gaming industry, there was no specific news about virtual reality headsets for a long time. Most of the fabrications were experimental or specialized in this field. They did not reach a special place among the general public until the 2010s.
One of the first companies to make a strong entry into the virtual reality market in this decade was Google; The company, which has always been known for its innovative ideas, and in 2014, with the introduction of Google Cardboard, launched a storm in the world of virtual reality; A simple product that became the gateway for millions of people to the world of virtual reality, through cheap cardboard that, along with a few other pieces, turned users’ mobile phones into a special device for such experiences.
Atari, Sega, and Nintendo were among the gaming companies that tried to enter the virtual reality world decades ago, but each failed miserably and abandoned the technology.
But if we want to consider the turning point of virtual reality in the field of quality home headsets, we have to go back to 2010. It all started when Palmer Lucky came up with the idea of producing a state-of-the-art virtual reality headset affordable for the general public.
After much research, Lucky and his team came to the point where they introduced a prototype of their headset called the Oculus; The headset was so promising that legendary gamer John Carmack was encouraged to join the production team and later joined Oculus VR after leaving his old id Software company.
The makers of the Oculus headset, which users highly anticipated, decided at the same time to launch a Kickstarter campaign and enlist the help of virtual reality lovers to raise funds; The issue was met with a very positive response, and while they asked for only $ 250,000, they eventually received the equivalent of $ 2.5 million.
It even got to the point where Facebook and its owner, Mark Zuckerberg, got involved, and in 2014, with $ 2.3 billion, Aquiles became a subsidiary of Facebook.
Finally, after introducing the initial models of the Oculus, the final model, the Oculus Rift, entered the market at $ 600 and received a reception that was not very stunning, but given the newness of the market and its good price…
John Carmack (right) and Palmer Lucky
With the success of Oculus Rift, the way for other companies to enter this market became more open than before. After a while, we reached a point where, from Valve and HTC to Sony, each has its own products in different categories of headsets. PC-centric and console to mobile and standalone models, and competition is still ongoing.
For example, sometime after introducing its new generation PlayStation 5 console, Sony mentioned producing a different virtual reality headset, which shows the great attention of the company’s officials to the future of virtual reality games. Unveil their new ones.
Virtual reality application
Undoubtedly, video games have made the largest contribution to the use of virtual reality technologies these days; The share is so high that many see the use of virtual reality only in games. Over the years, we have seen the release of various large and small games designed specifically for virtual reality headsets or, in addition to their standard mode, also support virtual reality.
Sony’s entry into the world of virtual reality as one of the giants of the gaming industry, as well as the great focus, even as a major game maker and owner of the world’s largest gaming store, Steam, on this issue has made the use of virtual reality in the gaming industry more and more.
But the application of virtual reality is not limited to the world of games and includes other things.
If we want to consider the entertaining part of the story, we have to pay attention to products that have a game-like atmosphere in addition to video games, but they cannot be considered as games at all.
These types of works are more like movies in which the user can move his head around to change the angle of the camera, but it is not possible to influence anything, and the user only has the role of observer.
Filmmakers have made some interesting publicity use of these works over the years. During the Jurassic World era, two related virtual reality works were released, one in a jungle with a dinosaur.
Azim flowed with a long neck, and another walked in the presence of Blue (the Jurassic world master) and immersed the audience beautifully inside.
Virtual reality experience Jurassic World: Blue
Or, in the days when Alien: Covenant was released, a virtual reality experience called Alien: Covenant in Utero was released by FoxNext VR Studios, which briefly allowed the audience to see the world from the perspective of a neomorphic baby.
Although it was not possible to have a special effect on the demo, it was an interesting experience that you can see through this link without using a virtual reality headset and feel the presence of the environment by moving the camera.
Moving away from this kind of fun experience, we come to one of the old uses of virtual reality, which is nothing but educational uses. We have witnessed the use of virtual reality in this field for many years. In recent years, thanks to the advancement of technology and improving the quality of headsets, education through virtual reality has grown more.
Part of this has to do with education. In some advanced training centers, children and adolescents can travel to the world of science and knowledge with the help of a virtual reality headset and become more familiar with various phenomena than before.
These days, virtual reality is combined with educational, military, and medical space and gradually increases its influence in various fields.
Another part is military training; An atmosphere in which soldiers can be trained in virtual reality without real conflict and injury. By using modern technologies, they can be given a sense of presence on the real battlefield.
These trainings prepare soldiers in various ways. For example, some of them focus on the sense of presence in dangerous environments, and others are related to touch technologies to have a greater impact on soldiers.
In this way, in addition to the virtual reality headset, the soldier holds a gun. While shooting at hypothetical targets, he also experiences kicking the gun or feeling free fall with a parachute in a virtual environment and preparing himself. It does in reality.
Other uses for virtual reality include medical applications, especially for surgeons.
Surgery is a very complex and delicate procedure, and it takes a long time for a person to reach the point where he is ready to perform professional surgery. And in this way, he has to go through all kinds of pieces of training that lead to many difficulties. But virtual reality has made it possible for surgery training to go much faster.
We now have companies like Osso VR and Immersive Touch that focus on providing virtual reality medical and surgical solutions, leaving physicians and surgeons more open to patient problems and educating novices. They give.
Some time ago, the results of a study were published that reported that people who have undergone surgery training with the help of virtual reality perform 230% better than surgeons who have been trained traditionally, and these people can move faster and more accurately.
Work towards their other colleagues.
Beyond education, virtual reality can also be used to operate on patients, and researchers, for example, have developed advanced software that combines MRI images, CT scans, and angiographic data to provide a surgeon with a three-dimensional environment; An environment in which the surgeon can study different parts and angles of the patient’s body with the help of a virtual reality headset and choose the best method for his treatment.
Virtual reality can also be used to improve patients’ moods and provide a calmer environment for them while they are hospitalized. Some time ago, a study was done at St. George’s Hospital in London. All the people were admitted there after the surgery. They were given a virtual reality headset that made this device a better experience than They had known to go to the hospital the previous time. Most of them said that they had endured less pain.
The use of virtual reality does not end here, and from the virtual presence as a tourist in different parts of the world and museums to even things like the fashion and clothing industry can be mentioned; Applications that are increasing day by day, and shortly we will reach a point where a large part of our lives is overshadowed by virtual reality.
Types of virtual reality
Although virtual reality did not have much variety in its early years and was usually reduced to a headset that the user placed on his face (or a container that he dipped his head into), it gradually reached a point where today it deals with all kinds of reality. Virtually we deal in different shapes and models.
As mentioned earlier, the conventional virtual reality model for home use entered a new era of popularity in the 2010s; When technology reached a point where both the quality of these products went higher than before, and their prices became more suitable for ordinary consumers; Of course, this means a reasonable price of about $ 600 for the Oculus Rift headset; That sounds like a lot, but it wasn’t too strange for a virtual reality headset in those years.
The HTC Vice was another headset launched in 2016 in collaboration with HTC and Volvo; An expensive headset that cost $ 800 for a professional model and was one of the first new-generation models to have its own controllers.
In the same year that the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vivo were released, Sony also introduced its long-awaited virtual reality headset for the PlayStation 4; The product, which was introduced in 2014 as Project Morpheus and was available in late 2016 for $ 400, has sold more than five million units to date.
In this way, 2016 can be considered a strong starting point for virtual reality headsets, which further led to the introduction of more products; From a variety of Oculus models such as the Oculus Go, Oculus Rift S, and Oculus Quest to a high-quality, albeit expensive Valve Index headset that was launched in 2019 for $ 1,000 Released.
Over the years, we have seen considerable variation in the market for virtual reality headsets. These products can be categorized into different categories, dividing headsets into two independent and hardware-dependent subcategories.
Hardware-based headsets, or Tethered VR Headsets, rely on a source outside their hardware to process images. For example, the PlayStation VR is included in this set because it does not have any special functionality without using the PlayStation 4. Achilles Rift, HTC Live, and Volvo Index are also in this group and need special hardware to run games.
But on the other hand, we have examples that work independently, and everything goes inside the headset itself. Headsets such as the Oculus Go and the Oculus Quest fall into this category and do not require any additional hardware to play with.
This means that you just need to put the headset on your face and enter the game through its menus (of course, some models in this group can also connect to peripheral hardware with a special cable).
There is no doubt that standalone headsets provide more convenience for the user, and the audience does not have to worry about additional costs due to the lack of need for peripheral hardware.
You can take these headsets with you and experience the game at any time and place and have fun with their controllers. Still, on the other hand, you have to cope with their special limitations in processing images with the same quality as the dependent headsets.
Oculus Rift S headset, the latest Oculus independent product that was discontinued some time ago
In general, if we want to examine the strengths and weaknesses of both groups, it should be said that standalone headsets offer much more convenience to the user and not only do not require additional hardware but also limit the user to a specific point of their home (where the computer They do not have a console in it and do not have a built-in sensor or camera to record movements.
On the other hand, most dependent headsets (except for some special models), in addition to the need for additional hardware, are connected to it with a cable that reduces the user’s freedom of action even in the closed space around it, and just a little from your computer or console Keep your distance from worrying about moving too much.
On the other hand, hardware-dependent headsets often have higher image quality and display games in more detail. Therefore, on the other hand, standalone headsets cannot easily compete with dependent headsets because of their weaker hardware.
Of course, these types of headsets are evolving day by day, and now we are at a point where the situation is much better than before, and in the future, we will see more progress in this area.
In terms of price, standalone headsets are usually better and can be purchased at a lower cost, although the wide variety of models on the market is such that they can not be easily commented on.
In general, everything depends on the features and tastes of the user. Still, in general, more professional users prefer system-dependent headsets due to their higher quality. They are willing to pursue the virtual reality experience in this way at a higher cost.
Here are some of the best virtual reality headsets on the market, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.
Before introducing these headsets, it is better to explain some of their specific terms briefly. Refresh Rate is the number of times the image is displayed per second, more or less similar to the frame rate.
So the higher the refresh rate of a headset, the better and faster the image will be. In some sections, the term “special cases” refers to the refresh rate, which means that the headset manufacturer did not consider it as standard, but through updating and optimizing the power of the headset, offered higher refresh rates to users; Rates that may not work in all situations and require trial and error in various works.
Field of View (FoV for short) is also the amount of space displayed in front of the user’s eyes, and the wider the amount and the greater the angle, the more the player will have control over the images.
- Display: LCD
- Resolution of each eye: 1440×1600
- Refresh rate: 120 Hz (144 Hz in certain modes)
- Field of view: 130 degrees
- Controller: Controller Index
- Weight: 809 grams
- Price: $ 1,000
The Index Volvo headset can be considered one of the most complete and advanced products on the market, offering a virtual reality experience with beautiful images and a high field of view.
Of course, its high price is not suitable for everyone’s pocket, and it is not easy to install and set up for beginners. Still, it is enough to cover its costs and enter virtual reality games to help these works better than ever with the help of high-quality controllers, even indexes.
Try another; Controllers that follow the movements of the fingers and have less competition in the market.
Oculus Quest 2
- Display: LCD
- Resolution of each eye: 1832×1920
- Refresh rate: 90 Hz (120 Hz in certain modes)
- Field of view: 90 degrees
- SERVICES: Oculus touch
- Weight: 503 grams
- Price: $ 300 (64GB model) and $ 400 (256GB model)
Among standalone headsets, few competitors can be found for the Oculus Quest 2; A beautiful headset that shows the progress of Aquiles over the years, and with higher quality than its predecessor and a lower price, it offers the taste of playing with a virtual reality headset without the need for additional hardware.
Of course, disadvantages such as the forced use of a Facebook account to work with Quest 2 and the lower quality of this headset compared to the best PC-dependent models cause it to lose a part of the professional audience. Still, Oculus is also thinking about this issue and can With the help of a special cable, he connected the headset to the PC and increased the quality of the games.
HTC Vive Cosmos
- Display: LCD
- Resolution for each eye: 1440×1700
- Refresh rate: 90 Hz
- Field of view: 110 degrees
- Compare: Compare the first generation Vaio
- Weight: 702 grams
- Price: $ 700
The HTC Vaio was one of the first virtual reality headsets of the next generation, which was very successful. In the following years, HTC tried to satisfy its customers by introducing newer models such as Peru and Cosmos.
The Cosmos model, whose elite version also entered the market last year, has high quality and, of course, its price is not low. One of the interesting features of this model is the possibility of changing its shell, which also allows the user to use this headset for augmented reality.
HP Reverb G2
- Display: LCD
- Resolution of each eye: 2160×2160
- Refresh rate: 90 Hz
- Field of view: 114 degrees
- SERVICES: Odyssey
- Weight: 499 grams
- Price: $ 600
Many may not know that HP is one of the greats in the virtual reality industry, and their well-built headsets appear in many catalogs. The high resolution of each eye and the appropriate field of view of this headset allow users to experience a pleasant game, and its weight is good compared to competitors.
One of the weaknesses of this HP product is its controllers, which do not have the quality of some controllers such as Volvo Index, but still, this product should be considered one of the best in the market.
- Display: OLED
- Resolution for each eye: 960×1080
- Refresh rate: 120 Hz
- Field of view: 100 degrees
- News: PlayStation Move and PlayStation Aim
- Weight: 600 grams
- Price: $ 300 (without controller)
Leaving aside the compliments, the PlayStation VR has its weaknesses in many ways compared to its powerful competitors. Of course, it compensates for these weaknesses with features such as a better price and access to a list of various PlayStation 4 games.
Although this beautiful headset is nearing the end of its life and will be replaced in the future with a new model that is being produced for the PlayStation 5, it can still be used in games for the PlayStation 4, and Sony can use it on the PlayStation. 5 also allows virtual reality games purchased by users to remain functional on the new console.
Aside from the discussion of professional gaming headsets, since the mid-2010s, we have witnessed the arrival of various mobile headsets with their own world, and we will look at them later.
It is also good to briefly reference virtual reality in amusement parks and amusement parks, which have become very popular in recent years and are becoming more diverse every day.
In addition to virtual reality headsets at home, amusement parks have also come to them and give fun moments to the audience.
This type of virtual entertainment is usually experienced as a group. After putting on special headsets, people take their place and enter an exciting world that may be interactive or non-interactive.
For example, at Legoland Amusement Park in Florida, there is a train where people get into cyberspace with a headset and experience a combination of real train movement and engaging virtual reality images together.
Contrary to Lego’s virtual reality experience, which gives the audience control over nothing but gestures, we have cases like Alien: Descent that fans of the alien movie series must experience at an entertainment center in Orange County, California, while headset They use virtual reality, take up physical weapons and compete with each other to kill xenomorphs.
Or the experience of the Jurassic world, where four people sit next to each other in moving chairs and enter a world full of dinosaurs using HTC Vaio headsets and identify dinosaurs with the help of their controllers, thus creating an interactive environment.
Virtual reality and augmented reality
So far, we have looked at different angles of virtual reality, and it is better to look at Augmented Reality (AR), which has similarities to virtual reality in some ways, but in fact, forms a different world.
In augmented reality, unlike virtual reality, the user does not lose touch with the real world. Conversely, he sees the environment completely; An environment that combines with digital elements and can be seen from various images and virtual objects to various information. In this way, we combine the real environment and virtual data, which is called augmented reality.
Augmented reality is usually provided to users in two ways: wearables such as headsets and special glasses or so-called smart glasses, and the other group consists of smartphones.
Although augmented reality is nothing new and has been used in various forms for years, Google Glass or Google Glass can be considered a product that suddenly sparked the fever of this technology and did something that has been discussed everywhere for a long time.
Was; The device, the prototype of which was sold to a small number of people in 2013 at $ 1,500, was later marketed in other models.
Google Glass Smart Glasses
These beautiful glasses allow the user to do many of their daily tasks without the need for other devices such as mobile phones and just by looking at Google glasses; From checking messages and chatting with friends to taking photos and videos.
But the most interesting part of the story is related to the same augmented reality features that, for example, put the city map in front of the user’s eyes and allows him to ride the bike without having to check the phone to find the route, only through the images he sees in front of his eyes. Follow.
Many believe that Apple will eventually make the device popular.
Google Glass, despite its great potential and the hype it created in the beginning, did not succeed as it should and perhaps did, and never became a means to a large audience; There were several reasons for this, from the high price to Google’s inability to make people feel the need to provide it, and of course, the flaws and shortcomings that the glasses themselves had.
But the new generation of glasses with the full name of Google Glass Enterprise Edition 2 has much better performance. Of course, instead of being used by ordinary users, it is still used more by professionals and technicians.
These days, the smart glasses market is full of diverse products, some of which do not perform badly, but it may be Apple that will achieve the greatest possible success in this market soon; A company that has proven that even if it is not the first in many cases, but produces and sells its products in a way that not only many customers go to them, but the popularity of these products reaches a point where other companies are riding the wave and similar products.
They produce themselves.
Apple smart glasses have not been officially introduced yet, but the news and rumors that we hear from around the corner indicate a product that may enter the market in 2022 with a price of $ 500; The price will be much better at first glance than Google glasses, but people who need lenses with their own eye number, will have to pay more.
Also, according to some experts, we should not expect a revolutionary and amazing product in the first generation of Apple smart glasses, and Apple will probably go for simpler glasses at the beginning of the road to establish its foothold in this market without much risk and then in the next generations. Will add to the features of your glasses.
These glasses will probably use Lidar or laser radar technology to scan the environment.
It seems that there will be no imaging capability in it, which may change in the future.
In general, we were supposed to get acquainted with Apple smart glasses sooner than this. However, problems such as the coronavirus epidemic caused this issue to be delayed, and Apple fans are still waiting for the unveiling of this product.
Fake designs of Apple fans of the company’s smart glasses
In addition to smart glasses, smartphones have been hosting augmented reality for several years, and we are witnessing all kinds of games and programs in this field. In recent years, programs that display virtual images in a real environment (from an angry dinosaur walking on a desk to programs that change users’ faces) have become very popular. Games such as Pokemon have become increasingly popular.
They are also historians; A work that made a strange noise a few years ago can be considered a perfect example of augmented reality with the phone, and many first realized the charm of combining real and virtual worlds.
The PlayStation Vita and 3DS handheld consoles have also created augmented reality in previous years thanks to their cameras, providing fun moments for users such as Little Deviants for Vita and AR Games for the 3DS.
After discussing virtual reality and augmented reality, we must mention another concept: Mixed Reality (MR); A concept that is similar to virtual reality and augmented reality in some ways but offers more advanced technology and makes it possible to fully connect with virtual objects and items as well as enter a virtual world within the real environment.
The culmination of headset-related technologies can be found in augmented reality headsets, of which HoloLens is the most prominent example.
All you have to do is put on a pair of glasses or a headset for augmented reality and enter a world that, on the one hand, surrounds the real environment you. On the other hand, virtual elements in the corners and your movements influence these elements.
For example, if a virtual vase is placed on a real table, you can tap it with your hands, and the vase moves in the images inside the glasses, while there is no such thing in the real world.
The most famous product in this field can be HoloLens from Microsoft; Advanced smart glasses, the first model introduced about five years ago. Later, more advanced models are produced, and interesting uses are made of them.
Of course, HoloLens has not yet reached a stage where the general public can use it easily, and Microsoft is probably not pursuing such a goal at the moment. The $ 3,500 price of the second-generation HoloLens reflects this.
Microsoft has developed a special Windows 10-based platform for the HoloLens (and other augmented reality equipment) known as Windows Mixed Reality. Today, several entertaining programs and even video games such as Young Conker (featuring squirrels).
The famous Rare studio) are also designed to work with holoLens, but most of these glasses have been used in other fields; Including engineering, medical, and military uses.
Some time ago, it was announced that a $ 22 billion astronomical deal had been struck between Microsoft and the US military. Microsoft would have to deliver 120,000 advanced headsets over the next 10 years, offering various functions such as night vision. They have a thermal camera and the ability to see the image behind the body of vehicles such as the Bradley war vehicle (one of the US military vehicles).
Of course, in 2018, we already saw a contract worth about $ 500 million between Microsoft and the US military, which the employees of the Redmond giant criticized.
After discussing virtual reality, augmented reality, and augmented reality, it is better to mention another term that encompasses all of these things together: Extended Reality (XR). Here X can be replaced by other letters to form AR, VR, MR, and even technologies that have not yet been introduced.
In a way, generalized reality can be thought of as a huge umbrella to which all these technologies are a subset. With their rapid advancement, they will bring to a point where the way of life in the not-too-distant future will be very different from today.
Virtual reality with the phone
Although the pleasure of experiencing virtual reality with its special headsets is not comparable to virtual reality with a mobile phone, we should by no means question the importance of mobile headsets; Headsets that are both much cheaper than other models and are easier and more accessible to the general public and so-called amateur users than advanced headsets that have to go through various steps to prepare them and cost a lot of money.
These headsets are a compartment that has space for a smartphone, and you just need to put the phone in it (of course, taking into account the dimensions of the compartment and model and operating system support) to be ready to enter the virtual reality world through the headset lens and the phone screen…
The higher the screen resolution and the higher the quality, the more enjoyable the virtual reality experience will be. Still, there is a big difference in quality between a virtual reality headset and a regular headset at best.
When Google launched its innovative product called Cardboard in 2014, virtual reality was still a long way from its heyday, and Google Cardboard became one of the first products in the field to reach millions with the taste of entry.
They tasted a new world.
Google’s main idea was that anyone could access virtual reality at home at the lowest possible cost. In this way, it was enough to have simple accessories such as cardboard, scissors, glue, etc., to create your virtual reality container based on the desired pattern.
Meanwhile, one of the few parts of the case that was more difficult to access were the lenses needed for the cardboard, for which some people even thought of a solution and, for example, used the body of plastic bottles to make the lens!
The cardboard, which could be made both at home and as a ready-made template from different companies, can be turned into a simple virtual reality headset by placing the mobile phone in its compartment, which allows the user to enter this fascinating world with a special program.
The simplicity and cheapness of the cardboard led to the sale of 15 million units, and of course, millions more were made by users, which are not included in this figure.
One of the most interesting things about Cardboard was the New York Times, which in 2015 sent a Google Cardboard kit to one million subscribers to help them access the virtual reality version of the magazine.
Later, newer models of cardboards were introduced, and finally, in 2016, it was the turn of Google Daydream View, which had many improvements over the cardboard.
Google Cardboard (right) and Google DeDream
The D-Dream, Google’s new model of the headset, was launched in two generations between 2016 and 2019, and at $ 80 and $ 100, it was beautiful to virtual reality enthusiasts.
Although D-Dream had a higher quality than the cardboard and was considered a more advanced product, it did not succeed as much as the cardboard for various reasons, including lowering the virtual reality tab among the general public and the need for special phones such as some Google and Samsung models.
Later, the D-Dream platform was used by Lenovo, and the Mirage Solo headset was introduced by them independently and without the need for a mobile phone.
We can not talk about virtual reality with the phone and not remember the Samsung Gear VR; A headset that the Korean giant designed in the early years of the virtual reality frenzy of recent years, in 2015, with the help of Aquiles, and sold well for $ 100; So that more than five million Samsung phone owners welcomed it and enjoyed working with different models of this headset with the help of their Galaxy phones.
Other virtual reality headsets with the phone include the Merge; A headset that is perhaps the most suitable option for children to enter this spectacular world, and although a few years have passed since it entered the market, still at a reasonable price below $ 50 can meet most of the needs of this part of the virtual reality market.
This headset also has the ability to remove a piece from the right side of its housing to become an augmented reality headset.
Virtual reality headset with Merge phone
In general, gaming professionals usually prefer more advanced headsets and are willing to spend more but enjoy their favorite games with higher quality. But virtual reality headsets with phones also have many fans, and you can experience fun moments with them.
The prevalence of these types of headsets and the increase in their audience have also led to the release of headsets to support Android and iOS operating systems in recent years. They can be approached with more freedom of action.
Of course, some experts predict that this segment of the virtual reality market does not have a bright future and will gradually be forgotten; This is not a big deal considering that Google is saying goodbye to this market and the end of Samsung’s support for Gear VR.
This can be attributed to the arrival of powerful and inexpensive headsets, in addition to the reduction of virtual reality fever among amateur users, and the number of standalone headsets that enter the market at more reasonable prices is increasing day by day. There is room for virtual reality headsets.
With a tighter phone.
The Nintendo Labo is a creative product offered by this popular Japanese company in various designs for the Nintendo Switch console. One of its models is dedicated to virtual reality.
The Nintendo Labo virtual reality kit is very similar to the Google Cardboard and follows almost the same mechanism; In this way, after purchasing the desired kit, the user must prepare it according to the instructions and then go to the special games by placing the Nintendo Switch inside the case (something similar to placing the mobile phone in the case of the virtual reality headsets).
From shooting aliens in the city to feeding funny hippos and other fun games can be experienced with the Nintendo Labo Virtual Reality Kit. The cardboard pieces that come with it make for a different experience than regular headsets. Use tools such as a gun or an elephant snout to immerse yourself more and more in the game.
Virtual reality games
It has been about five years since the new wave of virtual reality games took off; Games have been available since the mid-2010 for various PC headsets and, of course, the PlayStation VR headset on the PlayStation 4, and some of them have been very successful.
Here are 10 of the most exciting virtual reality games of all time and some examples designed specifically for headsets.
In addition to these games, dozens of other works that, besides the ability to play normally, also allow the audience to experience virtual reality, the best of which are Tetris Effect, Resident Evil 7, No Man’s Sky, and Rez Infinite. The list goes on and on, but our preference has been to go for games that are not possible without virtual reality headsets.
I Expect You to Die
- Manufacturer: Schell Games
- Publisher: Schell Games
- Platform: PC and PlayStation 4
- Published: 13 December 2016 (23 December 2016)
One of the first virtual reality games to be released for the PlayStation VR headset (along with other headsets) was a spy-themed game that promised exciting moments with its intriguing title, “I Expect You to Die.”
This first-person game confronts the audience with moments full of challenges and puzzles that require quick decision-making and action, and the puzzles must be overcome by choosing the right solution.
The player is placed in a special space in each section (from the plane to the car, etc.) and must pay great attention to his surroundings and, with the help of various items and tools, do things like bomb disposal and tell the story of the game in a world Follow James Bond.
The success of I Expect You to Die prompted its creators to consider releasing a second version, and these days I Expect You to Die 2: The Spy and the Liar are in production for the PlayStation VR and other headsets.
- Manufacturer: Epic Games
- Publisher: Epic Games
- Platform: PC
- Release Date: March 1, 2017 (March 4, 2017)
Robo Recall was one of the best virtual reality games at the time of its release, and Epic Games had tried to make good use of the different features of virtual reality compared to regular games.
In this first-person shooter, you have to fight the disobedient robots that have taken over the city, and with the help of the Achilles Touch controller, you have a fierce battle with the robots that are infected with the virus.
There are four weapons in the game to go to various robots, each with its own offensive characteristics. There are also abilities such as grabbing robots and throwing them, and overall the game shows a perfect sense of presence on the battlefield with destructive robots.
At the end of each mission, the player’s score is calculated and displayed on the online scoreboard to form a hot competition with other people.
- Manufacturer: Ready at Dawn
- Publisher: Oculus Studios
- Platform: PC
- Published: July 20, 2017 (July 29, 2017)
As much as Ready at Dawn Studios performed below expectations in the production of The Order: 1886, it made up for its failure with Lone Echo and shows that it has a lot to say about virtual reality.
Designed for Achilles headsets, the game takes place in 2126 on a space station in orbit around Saturn and focuses heavily on exploring and solving puzzles. Interaction with the environment in Lone Echo is at a high level, and you can communicate with many levels and items.
As a robot, repair damaged parts of the station and helped only the human inhabitant.
The game developers have also developed a multiplayer section called Echo Arena, pursued as a team. They are also working on Lone Echo 2, which will be released shortly.
- Manufacturer: Polyarc
- Publisher: Polyarc
- Platform: PC and PlayStation 4
- Published: February 17, 2018 (February 17, 2017)
Among the many games designed for virtual reality, Moss can be considered one of the different examples; A piece from the Polyarc studio gives the player the guidance of a mouse named Quill, who intends to find his missing uncle.
The game offers a combination of platformer and puzzle elements. The player’s point of view is also made in the first person, where he must help guide the mouse through the stages and move forward by removing obstacles and solving puzzles.
One of the most interesting features of the game is the way the mouse and the player communicate; In this way, the mouse communicates with the player using sign language and asks him for help, and for this reason, we do not know of any games that have such an interesting use of sign language.
- Manufacturer: Neat Corporation
- Publisher: Neat Corporation
- Platform: PC and PlayStation 4
- Published: June 14, 2018 (June 24, 1397)
Budget Cuts is one of the most creative virtual reality works of these years, and even its name (meaning budget reduction) suggests a different effect. The game’s main character is an employee of a large office, where he, along with other robots, performs simple tasks such as stamping papers and arranging office files.
Until one day, he is in danger of having killer robots in his workplace, and he has to escape from them.
The gameplay is based on teleporting to different parts of the environment and using knives to attack robots. In many ways is very similar to Portal, the historical work of Volvo Studio.
If you are into stealth and enjoy a well-crafted virtual reality game, Budget Cuts is for you; The second version was released a year and a half ago as Budget Cuts 2: Mission Insolvency.
Astro Bot Rescue Mission
- Manufacturer: Japan Studio (Asobi Team)
- Publisher: Sony
- Platform: PlayStation 4
- Published: October 2, 2018
It was a few months ago that Sony’s beloved robots became more popular thanks to Astro’s Playroom for the PlayStation 5, but they had already won the hearts of gamers in 2018; In one of the best virtual reality games of all time, in the form of a platformer, it made great use of the PlayStation VR capabilities.
Members of the Asobi Team (a subsidiary of Sony’s Japanese studio) had previously augmented their virtual reality and virtual reality art with two versions of The Playroom mini-games, this time at the Astro Bot Rescue Mission.
They went full, which until that day was less similar among virtual reality games. The Astro Bot Rescue Mission allows the player to steer a small robot. In addition to advancing in environments and overcoming platform obstacles, he must also be on the lookout for dangers that threaten the game camera and prevent the camera from being damaged (or otherwise) by moving his head.
Catch the player’s eyes); This has led to an interesting combination of two different angles in the form of platformer and first-person.
- Developer: Beat Games
- Publisher: Beat Games
- Platform: PC and PlayStation 4
- Published: May 21, 2019
Musical games have been top-rated for many years, and Beat Games Studio has used their potential in the best possible way in the world of virtual reality and has presented one of the most attractive games;
In addition to using a virtual reality headset, the game also needs two special controllers (PlayStation Movie or other similar controllers) to bring to life the feeling of holding two Star Wars-style light swords for the player and exciting moments. Figure out.
Beat Saber may seem like simple gameplay at first glance. Using two swords to destroy the blue and red blocks may not seem like much fun, but just engage with it for a moment and experience the game, especially at higher difficulty levels, than ever before. Do not have the ability to let go of this addictive and attractive effect.
Blood and Truth
- Manufacturer: London Studio
- Publisher: Sony
- Platform: PlayStation 4
- Published: May 28, 2019 (June 7, 2019)
Sony Studio London, which once produced games like The Getaway, later spent most of its time working on SingStar and EyeToy and PS Eye games (PlayStation 2 and PlayStation 3 cameras) of the first PlayStation VR games.
Produced under the name PlayStation VR Worlds. But Blood and Truth can be considered the best work of this studio in recent years; An exciting virtual reality game with a Hollywood look that makes PlayStation fans more hopeful about the future of London Studio.
In this first-person shooter, you take control of a former Special Forces soldier who must rescue his family members from the clutches of a London criminal gang, using a variety of weapons to fight enemies in a variety of settings; From fighting inside a casino to fighting and shooting enemies from inside a moving car.
The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners
- Manufacturer: Skydance Interactive
- Publisher: Skydance Interactive
- Platform: PC and PlayStation 4
- Published: January 23, 2020
The Walking Dead series is one of the most popular works in the world of comics, series, and video games these years, and in the world of virtual reality, we have witnessed quality work in this world full of zombies.
The adventures of this first-person shooter take place in New Orleans; In the days when zombies have conquered everywhere, and the main character of the game must fight them with whatever weapon he gets; From firearms to all kinds of cold weapons like winning swords with which you have to target the heads of zombies or so-called walkers and destroy them forever.
In addition to the acceptable variety of game zombies, there is also a system for combining different items and acquiring new weapons and items that leave the player free to explore the game environments and face various dangers.
- Manufacturer: Valve
- Publisher: Valve
- Platform: PC
- Published: March 23, 2020
By the time Huff Life: Alex was released, it had been almost 13 years since Huff Life fans had last met this well-to-do series, and the work had reached a point where many had no hope of seeing it again. But suddenly, even though it announced the production of a virtual reality game in the world of Huff Life; A game that is not a complete side effect, but a complete product that has a huge impact even on the story of the original versions.
Alex can be considered the best virtual reality game to date, and there may not be a rival anytime soon; A work that has been able to make the most of all the potentials of virtual reality and while providing a unique visual experience with the help of special headsets also makes the best use of Volvo index controllers and simulates the player’s fingers in the game environment, whatever His further immersion in this futuristic world helps.
Being in the world of Huff Life has never been so realistic. The high quality of the game and attention to detail is such that long after the release of Huff Life: Alex, we saw the release of interesting videos from users who did funny and weird things. With the help of items in the environment, they showed the art of designing this great masterpiece.
In the following, we will introduce some of the best virtual reality and augmented reality games with the phone, which are designed for Android and iOS operating systems.
Pokémon Go can be considered the main symbol of augmented reality games on the phone; The work that Niantic Studios produced in collaboration with Nintendo for the Android and iOS operating systems, and thanks to the good quality and, of course, the extraordinary popularity of the Pokémon collection and its funny creatures, reached such an achievement in the mobile world that it was less like it.
Pokémon Go sends Pokémon to the player’s surroundings to hunt them down with a mobile camera. This sometimes takes the form of an exciting competition due to different people in the area, turning it into a race to get to the place as quickly as possible.
It is desired. The strangeness of the success of this game is enough that the number of downloads after three years reached an astonishing number of one billion and made such a profit for its creator and publisher that it seemed impossible in the most optimistic case.
Harry Potter: Wizards Unite
After making history with Pokémon Go, Niantic went to the world of Harry Potter, this time in collaboration with Warner Bros. Branch San Francisco. Fans of JK Rowling’s work can go to Harry Potter: Wizards Unite for Android and iOS to perform their favorite magic with the help of various sticks and unlock the magical creatures of the world of Harry Potter and the Fantastic Beasts.
Other players also fight enemies such as the Death Eaters.
Angry Birds AR: Isle of Pigs
The game of Angry Birds or Angry Birds had caused such a stir in the mobile industry during its heyday that we have very few similar examples. Later, various subsets of Angry Birds were produced, one of which was the Isle of Pigs augmented reality game; A fun work that follows almost the same classic mechanism as Angry Birds and throwing angry birds at green pigs, but this time we see pigs and their structures in the real world around us.
Jurassic World Alive
Another popular augmented reality game takes dinosaurs into the streets and real places and gives users a quest to find these giant creatures in the city. This work of Ludia Studio is beautiful for dinosaur lovers, and it is possible to create new and mixed examples.
Hardcode game can be considered as one of the professional virtual reality works with the phone; The third-person shooter, which in addition to single-player mode and battle with robots in meandering rooms, also has an attractive multiplayer section, and you can make full use of Android controllers in its hot competitions.
One of the most famous virtual reality games in which you take on the command of a spaceship, and you have to cross obstacles and, with the speed of action, in the endless stages, reach a good point to break the record of your friends.
Moving your head to move the spacecraft in the environment has its own pleasure, and despite the simplicity of the game’s visual effects, it can be enjoyed for hours.
VR Roller Coaster
Roller Coasters, or exciting amusement trains, have an atmosphere that can be simulated with the help of a virtual reality headset and enjoy exciting and crazy moments. The game creators have tried to arrange a lively and crowded environment for it. This has made riding a train along with the noise and screams of other people, even in the heart of urban environments, an interesting experience.
Acron: Attack of the Squirrels
A game revolves around squirrels and oaks and forms a fun multiplayer experience between friends in which hot competitions take place over the oaks. While players experience the game with their Android and iOS operating systems, one person uses a virtual reality headset to play a different role, protecting their fruit in the form of an oak tree.
Virtual Virtual Reality
One of the most creative virtual reality games that, with its pleasant designs, takes the audience to the heart of a world in which most jobs are automated, and human beings are becoming more and more distant from their previous works. The virtual world provides fun moments in dozens of different sections and mini-games and has achieved great awards with its appropriate quality.
InCell VR combines the virtual reality experience with surfing the human body, leaving the audience in a world full of cells and viruses; A different tour in a spectacular world also has an exciting racing feel and a try.
The future of virtual reality
Virtual reality headsets have so far been moderately popular, and they can neither be considered an absolute failure nor a stunning victory. But when we look at it from all angles, the scourge of virtual reality in recent years may be heavier than the scourge of failure.
When we consider the usually high prices of these devices, when we do not forget the difficulty of advertising and marketing them, they are also new. Let’s not forget that as a generation of virtual reality headsets that are first available to ordinary people, we can also evaluate their sales relatively well and think with more hope for the future of these devices;
With the advancement of technology and the removal of restrictions, and the gradual reduction of prices, a future can attract more people. On the other hand, as the number of quality games and programs increases, it makes more sense to buy these devices.
Virtual reality companies also seem to have high hopes for the future, and for example, the latest HTC products are entering the market days to give more quality to those who are interested; The quality, of course, comes with high prices, which makes us still forget about the access of large audiences to these headsets.
HTC Vive Pro 2 and HTC Vive Focus 3 are two new models, both with 5K resolution (2448×2448 resolution for each eye), and their astronomical prices are $ 800 and $ 1300, respectively, with the first model priced at Base Station. (For headset tracking) and controllers, up to $ 1,400.
HTC Vive Pro 2 headset
But as much as HTC has no problem with the high prices of its products, Achilles is taking a different path and, over the years, has shown that it is thinking of offering affordable products to attract more audiences.
Their latest headset, the Aquiles Quest 2, priced at $ 300 and $ 400 (with 64 and 256 GB of memory, respectively), targets a much wider market.
Although the quality of this headset is lower than the powerful PC-based competitors and can not be as successful as them in attracting professional gamers, on the other hand, it was able to gain a wide audience, and in just five months after release, sales exceeded the total sales of all models.
Own the former Aquilus; An interesting development that shows that if the virtual reality headsets are offered with good quality and reasonable price, they have the ability to attract many customers.
Sony is currently working on the second generation of the PlayStation VR to enhance the PlayStation 5 gaming experience with a more advanced headset than before.
Meanwhile, many are waiting for the full unveiling of the new generation of PlayStation VR, now known as PSVR2; The PlayStation 5 virtual reality headset that Sony has made various references to date, but we have not yet seen its shape and image, and at least until 2022 will not enter the market.
But a picture of the new PlayStation VR controllers has been released, which shows more or less the same controllers as the index; Controllers that look a lot nicer than the PlayStation Movie and, like the PlayStation 5’s main controller, the DualSense, will have adaptive triggers and tactile feedback, and can also detect the touch of the user’s fingers with their body.
Although the previous PlayStation VR had its own charms, it also struggled with many issues, one of which was its twisted connections to connect to the PlayStation 4; This is something that we will not see in the new model, and the headset can be connected to the PlayStation 5 much easier than before with just one cable.
Also, the quality of the new model is much higher than before, and according to some rumors, it will be accompanied by a resolution of 2000×2040 for each eye. According to predictions, a special engine is included in it to feel the presence in games visually and visually. Physically also be transferred to the player.
Also, one of the most interesting features mentioned in the rumors related to the new PlayStation VR will be the Foveated Rendering feature; The rendering technique that makes this device always focus on the user’s pupil and recognize at any moment which part of the page is looking. In this case, the headset can process the images in the desired section with the highest possible quality and reduce the processing load of other sections.
Thus the image that the user is looking for will have a much better quality than before, without the need for hardware. Be astronomical for processing it.
Overall, it looks like Sony intends to offer a much more advanced headset than its predecessor, the PlayStation VR, and of course, it has to think about the right price; Because offering an add-on for the PlayStation 5 requires a completely different strategy than offering expensive, $ 1,000 headsets;
An issue that Sony paid good attention to in the previous generation, which sold more than five million PlayStation VRs; A figure that may not be very high compared to the PlayStation 4’s sales of more than 100 million, but as an accessory, in the form of Sony’s first attempt in the world of virtual reality, it is not a bad sale.
Although some experts are still not very optimistic about the future of virtual reality, we see a bright future in reports such as surveys conducted by Omdia; The report says that the penetration of virtual reality among people will increase day by day, and although it will not have a very astonishing speed, in 2025 we will reach a point where users around the world actively use 45 million virtual reality headsets.
According to Omdia experts, the annual sales market for games and other virtual reality works will reach $ 4 billion by 2025, 90% of which will be video games.
Total sales of headsets and software will also increase to $ 10 billion by 2025; That figure was about $ 3.2 billion in 2020.
In this regard, we can also mention Steam statistics as the largest PC gaming store, which indicates the growth of the number of owners of virtual reality headsets, and they now make up 2% of Steam users; Previously, they had about 1%. That means about three million monthly active users who use virtual reality headsets, and the number will increase in the future.
To talk about the future of virtual reality, we should not limit ourselves to just video games and entertaining works. It is better to broaden our perspective and consider a world where virtual reality is combined with different parts of our lives and separate from it.
It will not be easy; A world where everything from education and treatment to services and entertainment may be closely related to virtual reality.
Virtual reality can even bring people closer despite their distance from each other. Whether in times like the Coronavirus epidemic, where social distance has made close relationships much less than before, or on normal, safe days, virtual reality can be used to enter a world to which friends and acquaintances each have their own headset.
Connect and talk to each other; It is a topic that exists today in various forms, but shortly, as it progresses and becomes more popular, it will expand significantly.
When we consider what we have achieved in the field of virtual reality in the last few years, and the quality of related products is improving day by day, and the market is getting wider, it is better to prepare ourselves for a future where this technology contributes far more From today on in human life;
A future that, according to one expert, today’s virtual reality technologies will be compared to, like Space Invaders, with its rudimentary graphics compared to modern games.