Tuesday, June 20, 2017

My Life in Gaming: Where's All The VR Pilot Sims?

Why in the hell have none of the owners of properties that feature dogfighting, mech combat, etc. not thrown in with Virtual Reality? Putting up a cockpit, mapping key controls to the glorified joysticks or a standard console controller- being a pilot! Come on, videogame industry! Stop talking to the blue-haired freaks whining about Muh Appropriation or whatever SJW bullshit it is today, and take the fucking money.

I see all of these games for VR, be it for consoles or on PC, and so few of them are the things for which technology at this time is ideally suited for. That's being a pilot in a warmachine, where motion sickness is not a thing for your brainmeats, and simming all the things that your would do in that machine.

Yeah, something something Elite Dangerous and that piss-weak VR addon for EA's Star Wars Battlefront. Come on! Where's the VR remake and update of X-Wing Alliance or TIE Fighter (etc.)? Where's my MechWarrior VR, especially since I can go to a working BattleTech pod-based sim center. Where's the Macross and Gundam VR sims? Hell, why can't I buy a Super Robot sim game, where I can be Koji Kabuto and pilot Mazinger Z?

How about tank sims? I can't believe we have a sim game for being the bridge crew of a starship in Star Trek before we got a VR version of Battlezone. You can even do the multiplayer thing if you like; one drives, one shoots. Same goes for the attack chopper sims; pilot and gunner. Hell, even Lucasfilm can get in on that act with enabling the Clone Wars era Y-Wing that had the original gunner position and the ARC-170 with tailgunner and a navigator/gunner in addition to the pilot. Want more World War 2? Bomber sims, where you and your buddies are the crew of a B-17 or some other bomber aircraft.

The lack of the most obvious killer application for Virtual Reality astounds me as an utter lack of vision, especially out of the big franchises where this sort of thing should already be available for purchase. I can only imagine that corporate leadership is too scared to be the first out of the gate, and thus afraid of the risk, despite being in the best position to make exactly that move. They want some indie to do the risky stuff first, which isn't going to happen because they can't afford to fail. Until someone does the obvious and gets all the money, this will continue. Morons.


  1. Well, the Star Trek thing is because of Artemis and Empty Epsilon. They're big enough to draw real attention to the fact that there's money they could make. They're just skipping a generation by going to VR directly.

  2. Corporate reporting in.

    Short answer: as of now, VR isn't good for simulations.
    A triple-display setup for a flight or racing sim is much better unless you're willing to trade effectiveness for "immersion".
    To put it bluntly, at the moment it's akin to using a gamepad instead of a HOTAS setup. Some swear by their gamepads, you know.

    At the moment the only sims you'll get will be casual.
    Star Trek Bridge is far closer to Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes or Job Simulator than to an actual game.
    I do personally believe, that the only major lesson from ST: BC is that the market will bear the price of 50 eurobux for a VR game.

    Multicrew is one of the most resilient bad ideas, it seems.
    Multiple experiments seem to indicate it has next to zero retention value (hello, Guns of Icarus).

    Yeah, it's nice to fantasize about being Charlie-on-the-tail in the boiling sky, but what a player thinks he wants and what he really wants are two different things.
    The problem is while a lot of players happily pre-order basing on former, the game is reviewed and actually bought basing on latter (and this is why pre-orders are cancers from the other side of the fence).

    Mixing it with a niche sim and adding a requirement of $600-$800 VR plus a $800-$1000 rig is a nice recipe for a disaster.
    For now.

    When (and if) VR will give an advantage in effectiveness, things may very well change.
    As for now, see Serious Sam VR, Batman Arkham VR, FORM and Arizona Sunshine for things the current tech is good for.