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Welcome friends, to Naylor's HTC Vive Discussion thread!
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[QUOTE="Naylor, post: 14254622, member: 121724"] So I ordered my Vive on 3rd May expecting a delivery date at the end of June. However it arrived about 2 weeks later. Awesome! I thought it would be cool to do a little write up of my impressions so far, to hopefully help any of you who may be considering purchasing one of these babies! Let me preface this by simply saying "Holy shit! This is the future of gaming!". Hyperbole aside, here's my thoughts so far, both good and bad: 1. [B]The setup [/B] It's a pain in the arse. Seriously. The device comes with two 'Lighthouse' stations that contain motors and IR LEDs that flood your room with IR to track the controller and headset's movements. However, these need to be mounted on the wall, above head height and no more than 5 metres apart. This is easier said than done (especially in a 'typical' Manchester house, where available space is not particularly easy to come by!) Setup states around 30 minutes to get up and running, but between finding space on the walls, drilling, cleaning up, hiding the power cables from the Lighthouse stations in coving stuck on the wall and my wife loudly complaining about the whole process, it took around 2 hours. After this, you need to install the drivers and software from Steam/HTC. The headset itself is connected from the pc via a USB cable and Displayport/HDMI from the GPU to a 'Link Box', which then connects to the headset with a long, relatively inflexible wire. Installing the software was also a tedious experience. I have a fairly new installation of Win 10 and it took about 3 'reinstalls' and 'Verifying Steam's application files' of the software to make it not crash immediately upon opening. The 'Room Setup' involves simply holding down the trigger of one controller and 'drawing' the physical space you have around you. The software will then calculate the optimal play area and set 'Chaperone' walls that appear in the headset when you get too close to the play area. In practice this works wonderfully, and has stopped me accidentally smashing into my TV on many occasions. The headset itself has adjustment values for the top and side straps, IPD (Inter-Pupilary distance) and the distance the lenses are away from your eyes, to accommodate users who wear glasses. My wife wears glasses and states that it is extremely comfortable to wear, with no issues at all. 2. [B]Yeah yeah great but is it actually FUN?! [/B] Yep. It's amazing. The first time you strap on the headset, the tutorial plays. This involves being in a small white room in an Aperture Science lab. Everything looks fantastic in true 3D, and it feels like you are actually there. Then the walls fall down. You are actually in a HUGE warehouse. The sense of scale is just incredible and within 2 seconds you are transported from your living room to this new environment. I won't spoil the rest of the tutorial too much , but it involves blowing up balloons and bashing them about with the controllers that track PERFECTLY to your hands. Remember my wife who was complaining about it all evening whilst setting it up? Within a few seconds of putting the headset on she was laughing out loud with a huge grin on her face. It really is amazing. It's hard to put in words how convincing this is - you really have to try it for yourself! Everyone who I have demoed this to has been in awe. Give me a shout if you're ever in Manchester (UK) and want to come round to have a go :-D There are a number of games out for the Vive, but unfortunately most of them are not fleshed out enough at the moment. It needs another 6 months to a year to really get developers on board and creating great content. However, there are a few to note, such as Space Pirate Trainer (Shooting drones that shoot back at you) - this will have you falling all over the place dodging lasers and shooting back like a badass. Great fun, and great exercise! Audioshield is another good one - punching coloured orbs out of the sky to the music of your choice. Valve's very own game "The Lab" is a perfect introduction, as it contains a number of mini-games that show off the various capabilities of the technology. My favourites so far though are the adventure/rpg games such as "Vanishing Realms", "Call of the Starseed" and "Budget Cuts". I could go into great detail about how good these games are, but it's probably better to just check out some Youtube footage of them. Be aware, though, that the footage you see on a 2D Youtube video doesn't compare in the slightest to what it's actually like to play these games. Before I got the Vive I thought all the games just looked a bit crap. When I tried them I was blown away. 3. [B]Good points[/B] Ok - here's a few good points I can think of: [LIST] [*]Most immersive gaming experience I have ever had. An order of magnitude above anything I have tried before. [*]The controllers are incredible. Being able to fully interact with the world trick your brain into thinking the VR environment is REAL. (So much so that on a number of occasions we have leant on walls that aren't actually there, and put the controllers down on a virtual desk, only to have them fall straight through.) [*]There is actually a nice selection of games out at the moment, but many are short experiences (under an hour). [*]Even though VR is a solitary experience, the Vive works as a communal activity. Everything is mirrored to the main monitor as well as the headset, and audio can be also. This ends up with a load of people watching and laughing at the person in the headset winning or failing miserably at whatever game is being played. [/LIST] 4. [B]Bad points [/B] [LIST] [*]Resolution. Although you have 2 x 1080p screens strapped to your face, unfortunately you have 2 x 1080p screens strapped to your face. This means that the resolution isn't great. Think 720p kind of quality with a slight mesh, or 'Screen Door' effect over everything. However, you'll find that you're having WAY too much fun to notice this after the initial few seconds [*]Text readability - due to the resolution, any text smaller than around 12pt is quite hard to read. However, this isn't too bad as most games designed for VR take this into account and use large text scaling. [*]Tracking issues. I have the lighthouses set up in my lounge and occasionally one of the controllers will float away from me when it loses tracking, due to reflections from the mirror. It's better when you cover all the reflective surfaces, but it's also a pain in the arse to do this every time you want to fire up the Vive! [/LIST] 5. [B]Is it worth the price? [/B] It depends. The Vive is an incredible piece of kit, and from the moment you put the headset on you'll realise what a huge leap forward this technology is, however it is still very expensive, and requires a beastly computer to run properly (running 2 x 1080p screens at 90FPS is not such an easy task). Also, the number and quality of games that are currently out is quite limited. I still use it every day, and the sense of wonder and awe never really goes away, but I can't wait until this time next year, when the AAA studios start to release content for it. Honestly, if I were you, I'd just come round to my house to check it out and see what you think! Then I'd wait until the price is slightly lower and there are more games out for it. Give it 6 months. Cheers! [/QUOTE]
Welcome friends, to Naylor's HTC Vive Discussion thread!