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You can get a good sense of the role virtual reality plays in the video game industry by comparing two of the biggest industry events in North America: the Game Developers Conference and the Electronic Entertainment Expo.

VR plays a crucial role at GDC, and this year’s event made a case that it’s not going anywhere. And while last year’s E3 showed off VR from Ubisoft and Sony, the platform didn’t feel like it was a big deal.

But that’s changing. Leading up to E3, we saw the momentum continue. Ubisoft released Star Trek: Bridge Crew a couple of weeks before the show, and the startup Experiment 9 added Dungeon Chess, the Dungeons & Dragons chess app for Oculus Rift, to Gear VR as it prepares to add more to its VR tabletop platform.

And then the big boys weighed in. Bethesda’s bringing Doom and Fallout 4 to VR, and Sony made announcements as well for the PlayStation VR platform. This includes a Final Fantasy XV experience and our Unreal Engine VR game of the show, Polyarc’s Moss.


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E3 is becoming a bigger stage for VR. And it’s developing the same relationship with GDC that traditional gaming has: One show teaches you how to make cool games, and the other gives you one of the world’s biggest platforms to show them off.

Now, if only more of those 15,000 fans who came to E3 this year wiped their faces before donning a VR headset, not after, while enjoying the show.

For AR/VR coverage, send news tips to Dean Takahashi and Jeff Grubb (for those that cross over into PC gaming). Please send guest post submissions to Rowan Kaiser. Please be sure to visit our AR/VR Channel.

—Jason Wilson, GamesBeat managing editor

P.S. This Ubisoft game lets you “fly like an eagle.”

From GamesBeat

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LG uses Augmented Pixels’ sensor for better robot navigation and VR tracking

Augmented Pixels has created a new way to navigate using computer vision, and LG Electronics is announcing today it has built a 3D camera module that uses that technology to assist autonomous robots. Palo Alto, California-based Augmented Pixels, a computer vision research and development company, calls the technology SLAM, or simultaneous location and mapping. It is […]

E3 thrilled fans, but everyone agrees: The show must change

The Entertainment Software Association, the industry group that operates the influential Electronic Entertainment Expo tradeshow in Los Angeles each June, sold E3 tickets to the public for the first time this year. And it was easy to spot the rookie attendees — not just because they wore bright yellow badges, but also because many looked lost […]

Tobii Pro extends eye-tracking to non-game VR applications

Tobii has popularized its eye-tracking technology by enabling gamers to control computer games with their eyes. And today, the company’s sister division Tobii Pro is extending that technology to track eye movements in virtual reality headsets. Tobii Pro has integrated its eye-tracking technology with the HTC Vive headset. Now it can be used to conduct eye-tracking research within […]

Varjo’s VR headset promises to rival the human eye

While VR is all the rage right now, the current generation of headsets can’t match the visual fidelity of the human eye. A Finnish startup called Varjo launched today to fix that with new technology that takes advantage of how we see to provide better headset graphics than what’s on the market today. Varjo is building […]

Nvidia keeps the faith for virtual reality on the PC

Microsoft backed away from virtual reality on the Xbox One X at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) last week. But it said that VR on the Windows PC is a good fit, and graphics chip maker Nvidia is all in favor of that idea. VR has moved into its gap of disappointment, but there are […]

The best Unreal Engine games of E3 2017, selected by GamesBeat

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Beyond GamesBeat

Report: Ikea Teams With Apple For Augmented Furniture Shopping App

Some argue that AR will be the immersive tech that really takes off due to the fact that it adds elements to our daily lives and surroundings vs VR’s dependence on isolated virtual worlds. Shopping is simply one of the examples of augmented reality’s potential to change how we live, giving us different ways to test out consumer products, and Apple is coming to the table with one of the biggest names in furniture for a new AR application. A report relayed via Business Insider suggests Apple is teaming up with Ikea to launch an AR app that lets you test drive some furniture in your home before making a purchase in the very same app. (via UploadVR)

Why Doom VFR Was My Favorite VR Game At E3

E3 is the foremost video game convention in the world, with more games on the show floor than you can possibly play during the three-day event. Given we’re now in the second year of the latest round of consumer VR headsets, it’s no surprise that there were dozens of VR games at this year’s show, but none excited me as much as Doom VFR. (via UploadVR)

YouTube ‘Heatmaps’ For VR Show Where Viewers Are Looking

With a healthy catalogue of 360-degree content, a high-quality app available on most virtual reality headsets and a brand new VR Creator Lab program, YouTube is steadily securing itself as the go-to destination for 360-degree content. However, the most recent feature released by the popular video-sharing site, YouTube ‘Heatmaps,’ has got to be the most exciting new tools for VR video producers yet. (via VRScout)

A new startup from Nokia employees is trying to fix VR’s biggest technical problem 17

One of the biggest limitations of current virtual reality technology — whether you’re talking about Samsung’s mobile Gear VR or a full home system like the Oculus Rift — is resolution. And progress toward solving this problem is slow, because companies making VR headsets are at the mercy of advances in display technology. A new company led by former Nokia and Microsoft product managers aims to slash that wait by using a clever crossing of existing hardware and carefully executed software. Today, they’re opening up for the first time about the company they’re building, called Varjo. (via The Verge)

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