I Never Want To Be Near A Nosulus Rift Again

When I first heard about the Nosulus rift a few weeks ago, I took it as a joke. A VR peripheral that emits the odor of flatulence? It’s not anywhere near April 1, though, so when my colleagues found out that it would be on display at Gamescom, a show I’d be attending, I started to get a little concerned. Jokingly, I told my boss that I’ve decided not to attend Gamescom. [Editor's note: The entire news team made him promise that he'd try it. He was a good sport about it, in the end.]

My Doom Approaches

The gaming show neared, and I had booked an appointment with Ubisoft for South Park: The Fractured But Whole (a title you need to read out loud to understand). As I arrived at the Ubisoft stand, I spotted the Nosulus Rift in a glass box, which gave me some hope that it was just there for pictures.

A Ubisoft spokesperson called me in to the South Park meeting room, at which point my hopes were instantly shattered. There was a working Nosulus Rift. It was mere inches away from me, staring me in the face. It sat there, smug, on its mirror pedestal, taunting me. "You know what I’m going to do to you," it seemed to say.

A key feature in the new South Park game is the power of flatulence, which you can activate at the press of a button. The point of the Nosulus Rift is to immerse you in this experience by unleashing an odor especially developed to smell like farts.

I’ve got to credit the creators on the scent they’ve made–it is truly awful. It smells like a burning toot that was kept in a balloon for some time, and then carefully sprayed directly into my nostrils. I could elaborate further, but in the interest of professionalism, I’ve held back here on describing just how rancid the smell is. As the Nosulus Rift expels its gas, you can feel a light wind blowing past your nose, which only worsens the experience.

This Thing Is Pure Evil

However, the smell itself isn’t the worst thing about the Nosulus Rift; what it does to you psychologically is its most repugnant quality. It's a strange thing to willingly [Editor's note: Partially willingly] put on your face, knowing what's about to happen. Even though it looked clean, and even though I saw a Ubisoft spokesperson wipe it down with a wet cloth, I was filled with fear and disgust. It’s not comfortable either, but the worst part by far is the moment you’re about to press the fateful button. You know what you’re about to do to yourself, and yet, you go through with it anyway.

I skipped lunch the day I had this demo, and I really hope that Ubisoft takes it no further than a promotional device. It does exactly as advertised, but it showed that truth in advertising isn't always a good thing.

Niels Broekhuijsen

Niels Broekhuijsen is a Contributing Writer for Tom's Hardware US. He reviews cases, water cooling and pc builds.

  • WFang
    Really, where did your reporting inquisitiveness go? What about future plans? Other scents? How many ... blasts... per device? How do you re-fuel it? CAN it be refueled?

    When will the raspberry bliss model come? So many questions unanswered! ;)
  • dark_lord69
    So this was developed as... what? Proof of concept?
    Maybe that's need and/or a possibility..
    But who would ever pay money to buy a device that gives off a fart smell?

    You'd have to pay me to use it...
  • bloodroses
    Reminds me of Smell O Vision, which didn't do well then... lol
  • Honis
    I actually look forward to VR for my other senses, including smell. Would I want it for every game? Oh lord no. But walking through a VR rose field losses a lot depth when you can't smell them. Imagine smelling the ozone of a blaster battle, walking through a corridor and catching a whiff of the Alien since it walked by unseen and unheard 1 minute earlier, I could list off a lot of games that would benefit from this device.
  • quilciri
    I imagine the SDK will be released. The only issue would be wondering why all the aliens smell like a**.
  • RomeoReject
    While I generally despise Ubisoft, the fact they actually built this is beyond amazing.
  • bloodroses
    Just the thought of smelling rotting corpses from one of these games makes me want to upchuck. I've opened a bag of beef jerky once where the meat spoiled; the smell was so bad that I'll never be able to get it out of my mind. :(
  • Jeff Fx
    You're going a little far with this obvious hoax. The name alone tells us it's not a real product, and fart-smell? That's the easiest and one of the most undesirable smells to create.
  • Jesse_20
    Except Ubisoft has a website for it and it's being reported by other sites like IGN.
  • g-unit1111
    No. No. No. No. No. No. No. I love South Park, but I can live without smelling the farts. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. No. Just... no.