Oculus might be giving you an Xbox One controller to get your virtual reality experience off the ground, but what if you want more natural control? Don’t worry, that’s coming soon. Palmer Luckey and crew just took the wraps off of Oculus Touch, a hand controller system that lets you navigate the virutal world in a more natural way. Each grip includes both motion-based input as well as physical controls and haptic feedback – in some cases, you’ll feel what you touch in the VR space. There’s no mention of pricing or whether Oculus Touch will be ready for the consumer Rift headset’s early 2016 debut, but we’re hoping there isn’t a protracted wait.
Both games are third-person experiences: You’re not seeing through your character’s eyes, but are looking at the action from somewhere else in the room. Edge of Nowhere put me on windblown frozen cliffs. Someone was in front of me, an explorer. I started moving, and he started moving. Then I realized I was him, controlling him third-person. As I moved him around, climbing and jumping, I could also move my head around, looking at large chasms, and foreboding cliffs up ahead.
Chronos takes place in a giant castle-like maze, with a cryptic vibe similar to Sony’s Ico and Shadow of the Colossus. I ran from room to room, solving puzzles, finding things to collect, and running from strange creatures. But in each room, I stayed in a fixed place and watched myself move around: like I was now jumping from security camera to security camera in a huge house, watching myself. Both of these were out-of-body experiences, in VR.
I was led into a testing room, a Rift put on my face again as someone helped me get my Touch controllers on my hands. As they slipped on, I saw glowing hands float in space in front of me. I was in a room filled with toys. And across the virtual play-space, Palmer Luckey’s head and hands glowed: he was operating an avatar, speaking to me over my headphones as he stood in another room.
Luckey asked me to grab a block in front of me. I relaxed my fingers – forefinger, middle and thumb – and picked up one of several blocks on the table in front of me. There were balls, blocks, remote controls, laser guns. win a free Oculus Rift Targets and garden gnomes and masks were mounted all around me. I threw the ball. I didn’t throw well. I tried again, and knocked over a statue. I tossed another block at Luckey. He ducked, and threw something back at me.
A tetherball was hanging from the sky, and I punched it. He punched it back at me, as we stood across from each other: disembodied faces and floating hands, having a chat. Then I picked up some virtual roman candles, as he lit mine and we shot win a free Oculus Rift sparks in the air. He asked me to pick up a remote control near me, and I used the thumbstick on my controller to operate a toy tank, driving it up a ramp, and then aiming at Luckey’s tank, and pressing the trigger, and firing missiles at him.