Newell: SteamVR headset has 0% motion sickness rate

Ben Parfitt
Newell: SteamVR headset has 0% motion sickness rate

Valve reckons it has cracked the motion sickness problem that virtual reality headsets cause with a number of players.

Boss Gabe Newell admitted to The New York Times that he'd reacted badly to previous demonstrations of VR tech, describing them as the world's best motion sickness inducers”.

However, the company's own headset – the HTC made Vive – has cracked the issue, Newell claims, thanks to its laser positioning system that accurately maps a player's real movements to the game. He reckons that zero per cent of people get motion sick” as a result.

Furthermore, the tracking system – called Lighthouse – is being offered free to select hardware manufacturers.

Last year EA CFO Blake Jorgensen admitted that VR's main challenge was that selling the tech to anyone who is at all even slightly motion sick prone” will be very tough”.

Added Jorgensen: "I've seen people within 30 seconds have to take the goggles off because ... it is so immersive. It's an incredible experience and I think there's a huge opportunity but there's some technology steps that have to be played out and I think so ways to make sure people enjoy it but don't get sick by it too quickly."

Oculus boss also warned market rivals that they must also ensure that they solve motion sickness issues as not doing so could pose a risk to the entire VR industry.

We're a little worried about some of the bigger companies putting out product that isn't quite ready,” he admitted. That elephant in the room is disorientation and motion sickness. We're encouraging other companies, particularly the big consumer companies, to not put out a product until they've solved that problem.”

One developer, Lunar Studios, even abandoned a VR version of its upcoming title Routine due to the extreme” motion sickness caused by play testing the game.

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