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Oculus Rift Development Kits Arriving in Customer Hands

By - Source: Tom's Hardware US | B 19 comments
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It's finally here for the early adopters.

For those of you who aren't familiar with the Rift, it's the highly anticipated virtual reality headset from upstart company Oculus VR that has captured the imagination of both enthusiasts and game developers alike. Those who make pledges to the Rift's 2.5 million-dollar Kickstarter project have begun to receive the promised development kits.

Oculus VR reported that the kits began to ship on March 29th, and we received confirmation from Neil Schneider (President and CEO of MTBS3D.com, and Manager of Immersive Technology Services, FBIT, UOIT) that their dev kit had arrived on April 5th. Neil provided one of the first Rift pledges on kickstarter, about the 260th in the over-10,000 pre-orders for the device.

Neil told us that the screen is slightly larger than the one we experienced at CES 2013, but it shares the same 1280x800 resolution. As we previously reported, it seems that the Rift-compatible Doom 3 game is not included in the development kit, and Oculus VR has provided a game purchase credit instead. This is unhappy news for gamers who purchased the kit in hopes of playing Doom 3 out of the box. Unfortunately, it looks like there will be more of a wait until players can expect a plug-and-play experience with the Rift.

To be fair, Oculus VR has made it clear that the Rift is intended for developers and that a commercial model will follow when there is solid game support. For now, developers and enthusiasts can play with the included 'World Demo' (a sandbox environment that simulates a small villa in Tuscany). In addition, Neil reports that enthusiasts are having some luck with the open-source Perception 3D drivers, and that some MTBS3D members have been working on the open-source version of Doom 3 in order to try and modify it for the Rift. On a side note, a kickstarter project has been recently launched for the development of a game called Six Elements that specifically targets Oculus' VR headset.

For those interested in reading more about Oculus VR's Rift, check out our Oculus Rift: Changing The VR Landscape At CES 2013 article.

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  • 0 Hide
    dalethepcman , April 9, 2013 9:14 PM
    Next thing you know people will get stuck in their virtual worlds and some crazy person will make a life or death game that must be played for everyone to escape the world.

    Nerve Gear is on its way... SaO

    With that out of the way... I can't believe its finally here, and I hope this product blows people away. Now if only there was a simple way to get a company like microsoft or intel to "support" this product...
  • 8 Hide
    christarp , April 9, 2013 9:39 PM
    I will not be satisfied until holodecks.
  • 2 Hide
    ricardok , April 9, 2013 9:52 PM
    dalethepcmanNow if only there was a simple way to get a company like microsoft or intel to "support" this product...
    Why??? They need game developers, not companies like those..


    Anyway, good looking stuff.. ^^ Hope to get my hands on one as soon as it's released..
  • Display all 19 comments.
  • 0 Hide
    magicandy , April 9, 2013 9:59 PM
    I wonder when Valve plans to release the update to Team Fortress 2 that adds Oculus Rift support. They announced it back in March with no mention of exactly when we could expect it.
  • 1 Hide
    pyrotek85 , April 9, 2013 10:08 PM
    dalethepcmanNext thing you know people will get stuck in their virtual worlds and some crazy person will make a life or death game that must be played for everyone to escape the world.Nerve Gear is on its way... SaOWith that out of the way... I can't believe its finally here, and I hope this product blows people away. Now if only there was a simple way to get a company like microsoft or intel to "support" this product...


    This is what I tell people who say the Oculus is a stupid idea. We need something like it to get to the next step, we won't suddenly see something with total immersion like nerve gear on store shevles, not without something leading up to it. 3D gaming has had a lot of false starts throughout the years, but I think the tech is mature enough and cheap enough for consumers that it can be successful finally.
  • 2 Hide
    haze4peace , April 9, 2013 10:38 PM
    magicandyI wonder when Valve plans to release the update to Team Fortress 2 that adds Oculus Rift support. They announced it back in March with no mention of exactly when we could expect it.

    It's out. Run the game with -vr
  • 1 Hide
    Darkerson , April 9, 2013 11:15 PM
    christarpI will not be satisfied until holodecks.
    One step at a time, buddy.
  • 0 Hide
    jkflipflop98 , April 9, 2013 11:16 PM
    Indeed. TF2 has Oculus support right now. Can't wait to try it out.
  • 0 Hide
    heero yuy , April 10, 2013 5:21 AM
    Quote:
    Next thing you know people will get stuck in their virtual worlds and some crazy person will make a life or death game that must be played for everyone to escape the world.

    Nerve Gear is on its way... SaO

    With that out of the way... I can't believe its finally here, and I hope this product blows people away. Now if only there was a simple way to get a company like microsoft or intel to "support" this product...


    SaO? has everyone forgotten about .hack?
  • 0 Hide
    dark_lord69 , April 10, 2013 6:57 AM
    Using one of these is how I want to experience Half-Life 3!
  • 0 Hide
    dark_lord69 , April 10, 2013 6:59 AM
    Using one of these is how I want to experience Half-Life 3!
  • 0 Hide
    booyaah , April 10, 2013 7:23 AM
    Star Citizen + Occulus = Smexy!
  • 0 Hide
    RADIO_ACTIVE , April 10, 2013 7:39 AM
    Im all for technology inovation but I'm afraid that this will just be another gimmick. 1280x800 meh... But still I want to believe that this will suceed.
  • 0 Hide
    jaber2 , April 10, 2013 9:04 AM
    hopefully now more devs would make games with built in support
  • 0 Hide
    whiteodian , April 10, 2013 10:57 AM
    I will have to try a demo unit before plunking down money on it, but it sounds great. Hopefully Best Buy will have a demo unit. I am excited for the consumer level version. I hope it comes in at a reasonable price. If I normally wear glasses or contacts due to near-sightedness, would it make sense to take them off? Anyone with a similar situation, please let me know.
  • 1 Hide
    whiteodian , April 10, 2013 11:01 AM
    Tom's, your new commenting is fugly. I can see there will be many double-posts due to the way it operates. New comments are hidden and the comment box does not get cleared after a comment is posted. Now to hunt for the edit comments and attempt to delete some of my duplicates. What happened to the nice shortcut that use to be at the top... Cool I figured it out.
  • 0 Hide
    dalethepcman , April 10, 2013 11:36 AM
    Quote:
    Why??? They need game developers, not companies like those..

    Because companies like Microsoft created Direct X, and companies like Intel outsell video chipsets 10 to 1 over AMD and NVidia combined. In the PC sector, these two companies more than any game developer can make new hardware/software be accepted.

    Getting a developer behind this is all good, but getting a standard created and extensions built into hardware and into the OS would be much better.
  • 0 Hide
    CaptnYesterday , April 10, 2013 12:52 PM
    Quote:
    Indeed. TF2 has Oculus support right now. Can't wait to try it out.


    Meh, I wouldn't get too excited. Fast action FPS like TF2 would have been one of my last choices for re-introducing VR. If anything though, it can be taken as an excellent test for how well VR can work in a 'worst case' scenario.
  • 0 Hide
    Chris Droste , August 2, 2013 1:53 PM
    .Hack or SAO...Yuki Kajiura will be there to provide the epic world music.
    SAO is on everyone's recent memory in the anime community, even to such a point you seldom see any reviewers even mentioning their similarities. we may not see big name support immediately, but let's hope for some basic support for something like GuildWars2, ElderScrolls, and maybe even something like a NeedForSpeed or Gran Turismo. MS could knock one out of the park by buying like a hundred of these things, adapting them to the Xbox ONE + Kinect; and maybe do a cursory plug-in to something like Fable.