THE FUTURE OF GAMING
Say goodbye to controllers as you know it.
The humble video game controller has come a long way. Just look at the difference between the Atari 2600’s simple joystick and one button setup, and the PS4’s DualShock 4 with its 12 digital buttons, two analog sticks, two analog triggers, d-pad, motion sensors, and even a capacitive touchpad. But video game controllers in the future may not even resemble traditional handheld controllers.
Instead of moving a d-pad or analog stick for hand-based actions, imagine moving your arm and your ngers. Knuckles – the latest grip-based VR controller from Valve – uses capacitive sensors on the controller to individually track each of your ngers so the controller can tell exactly what motion you’re making. And it comes with strap so you can actually ‘throw’ something without sending the controller in to a TV screen. Gaming is also going to become a lot more active in future, as developers try to heighten the sense of realism by actually getting you moving. Take for example, the Virtuix Omni. This gaming rig places a treadmill in its center so how much and how fast you move in the real world can be accurately reflected in the game world.
More and more, we’re also going to see the sensors in wearables added
“Gaming is also going to become a lot more active in future, as developers try to heighten the sense of realism by actually getting you moving.”
to the gaming world. For example, take the KOR-FX Haptic gaming vest. This provides vibrations to your body corresponding to audio coming from the game, so you’ll really feel, see and hear what’s going on in game. VR gaming is going to become more communal, as backpack PCs like HP’s OMEN X and the XMG Walker mean we’ll no longer be tethered to a computer or gaming rig, with everyone else waiting in line.
Not being tied to a power cable also means more people can get in on the fun at once, so expect full-on VR gaming arenas in the near future. Zero Latency VR is already running such facilities in Australia, and their custom-built games get you and a group of up to eight players t with PC-laden backpacks, VR headsets and (multi-tasking) weapons to kill zombies in an otherwise empty space.
‘Free-roam’ virtual reality is de nitely set to take o in the near future. And the prospect of being able to physically high- ve a fellow participant while in the virtual world or, to gun down enemies while literally back-to-back with your friends certainly seems just that much closer to being reality.