Oculus Rift shipping March 2013 project gets closer to nonvirtual reality

first_imgThe Oculus Rift, an incredibly successful Kickstarter project determined to take a modern crack at the VR headsets of years past, is ready to help offer the “in the game” experience that so many gamers crave. Like many Kickstarter projects that see explosive growth, the Oculus Rift team wasn’t prepared to deliver so many headsets within the original deadlines. To explain how delivery will work now that the Kickstarter is over, the team published an update to the project on their website.Few Kickstarter projects start with the expectation that the project is going to explode out of the gate. The Oculus team admits to originally only planning to have to make a few hundred units. By the end of the Kickstarter they were faced with the challenge of shipping more than 7500. Production scale changes dramatically with that sort of growth, so the team had to work hard to create a solution that still managed to get units in the hands of developers within a time frame that was somewhat close to the original projection of four months. In their update, the team does a fantastic job breaking down exactly why Oculus units won’t be shipping until late March 2013.The final designs for the Oculus Rift developer headset features a 7-inch display with 1280×800 resolution. The new displays are said to be a marked improvement over the demo units that were originally made for the project, but are also 30 grams heavier and 1.4 inches larger. The final build features an optimized motion sensor capable of higher refresh rates and a magnetometer that was previously not available. The end result is a better screen and a sensor that can more accurately track the movements of the user, ultimately creating a more immersive experience.The Oculus team also announced additional support and ongoing work on adding support for popular game engines to the SDK. The video above demonstrates the work done with the Unreal 3 engine, however the SDK will also include Unity integration with the hopes that support will be included in the engines themselves in the future.The Developer Center for Oculus Rift was announced as well, with plans to provide developers with a single place for SDK access, forums, and a support system that will make it easy for developers to communicate directly with the Oculus team.Despite the delay the Oculus team is doing a great job of keeping everyone informed, and it is clear by this update that the team has everything they need to deliver an exciting product. Accessories like this one live or die on the support from developers willing to make their games work well on the hardware. With glowing reviews, like the one our own Sam Cook gave to an the early prototype of Rift, and the constant communication and updates seen by the team, I think it’s pretty clear that we will see a lot of support for this generation’s VR headset.via the Oculus bloglast_img