Oculus May Have A Controller To Go With Its Rift

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Steve Anderson
The Video Store Guy
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Oculus May Have A Controller To Go With Its Rift

The Oculus Rift; it's easily one of the biggest developments in gaming since a plumber strode across our standard-definition televisions back in the 1980s. But one thing that's left viewers skeptical almost since its arrival is how, exactly, the system would reconcile in terms of controlling. It was one thing to see all this amazing, immersive video, but how would we actually move around said video? That question may be closer to an answer with reports that Oculus may have a controller in mind to go with its amazing viewer.

The Gear VR, said to be built on Oculus technology, is set to not only come with its own Bluetooth controller, but will also work with other Bluetooth controllers as well as, on some levels, built-in tools like a touchpad and buttons found directly on the headset itself. But Oculus founder Palmer Luckey doesn't necessarily think that this may be the best route for all concerned here, and already, some are wondering if Luckey pointing this out means that Oculus has its own idea for a controller.

It only got worse when Luckey reportedly said “When are we going to create it? Or when are we going to announce it?” Luckey reportedly backpedaled quickly, declaring that such a statement would be “...a hefty commitment...” and that “...a lot of research and development” was being done as far as input went, but right now, specifics would be short on the ground.

Indeed, controlling VR can be a huge problem due to the immersion factor. It's one thing to feel like you're in a game, but when you lift your hands in front of your face and you don't actually see anything, that level of immersion can take a bit of a hit. Plus, some unpleasant sensations can be generated as a result, a kind of disconnect between what you see and what you should see. But with the right controller, and the right environment, the feeling of presence, of being there, can get augmented. It's safe to say that Oculus, now part of Facebook, now has the kind of capability required to make such a controller happen. Indeed, listening to Luckey, you'd almost think that Oculus may have something ready, if not merely under development.

Still, it's a necessary point that needs to be addressed; just as hardware goes nowhere without games, so too do games go nowhere without control methods that can be readily put to work. While we're not likely to see the results of this development any time soon—nor are we likely to see the Rift itself unless we go with developer kits—the fact that the work is in progress should be enough to lift the spirits of anyone eagerly awaiting the arrival of virtual reality in the home. It's coming. Oh, it's coming. It just takes a bit longer than some might have hoped to get all those ducks in a row and make it as magnificent as it can be.

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