Virtual reality has long been thought of as fantasy, but since 2010, the technology has grown considerably and experienced new levels of popularity. Since it’s a relatively new and expensive technology that is still growing, many people are concerned that it’s a gimmick. So is virtual reality actually worth it?
How It Works
Virtual reality uses computer technology to create a simulated environment which you can interact with, plunging you directly into the action. The tech can be used to play games, witness unique experiences and even watch videos. However, virtual reality requires special headsets you must wear to enjoy the experience. The headsets vary in price, and certain headsets may only be compatible with certain games or experiences, but more on that later.
What Can You Do?
Generally speaking, virtual reality is mostly used in gaming. A recent trend in the video games industry has seen developers create games specifically for VR, providing players with an immersive experience that has never been done before. This can range from high-budget video games such as Resident Evil 7 to virtual reality casino games such as NetEnt’s popular slot Gonzo’s Quest. Videoslots, one of the leading UK online casinos, has even launched its own virtual casino where users can walk around and enjoy games. While VR video games are easy to find nowadays, VR casinos and casino games are still being experimented with but may become common in the years to come.
In addition to gaming, the technology also allows users to watch and experience films in virtual reality. Even YouTube has jumped in on the trend with its 360-degree videos. Some of the most common 360-degree videos are based on rollercoaster rides or take place in scenic locations where viewers are restricted from moving but can glance around and soak in the experience.
As mentioned, to experience virtual reality, you’ll need a headset which comes in the form of a pair of goggles you place over your eyes. There are two main types of headsets; those are that are tethered to a PC or games console and the cheaper freestanding headsets that require your smartphone device to work.
The more expensive the headset, the more you can experience. For example, the Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, and Sony PlayStation VR headsets all allow users to play video games. These headsets must all be connected to a device (A PlayStation 4 console is needed for the PlayStation VR headset) and use cameras and controllers for users to play games via motion tracking. Currently, the HTC Vive is regarded as the most powerful VR headset and is the most expensive. While not as powerful, the PlayStation VR headset offers great performance, is much more affordable, and is a great way to enjoy virtual reality.
The cheaper headsets do not need to be plugged in to work but require you to clip your smartphone device to the front of your goggles and run apps. These experiences generally aren’t as impressive as the VR games provided by the high-end headsets but are a great introduction to virtual reality for new users.
Virtual reality technology is still growing, and although some of the cheaper headsets offer users quick gimmicks, the high-end headsets have proven to offer gamers groundbreaking and immersive experiences. The biggest problem regarding virtual reality and the high-end headset is the price point which can scare off many potential fans. Still, if you’re able to find great deals on some of the high-end headsets, virtual reality is completely worth it and will provide you with unforgettable experiences.
If you’re still concerned about the tech, you don’t need to worry. Virtual reality is expected to grow significantly in the coming years and will eventually become much more accessible to people. With game developers creating high-budget VR experiences and film and television directors experimenting with the tech, we just can’t wait to see where the future of VR tech will take us.