Discussion in 'Article Discussion' started by Gareth Halfacree, 17 Nov 2015.
CFO compares VR to the Vita.
Eh, not unexpected. EA is built around pouring budget into highly-marketed sure-thing versions of known successful game designs (e.g hordes of 3rd person action games, the continued yearly sports reskins, etc). VR is not a large enough market to sustain a multi-million budget game, and EA aren't structured to properly fund and release smaller games, particularly ones that require experimental game designs rather than rehashing known-good ones. EA's shareholders can't tolerate a risk of failure.
The thing is, they used to be.
Dead Space, Mirror's Edge, Mass Effect etc
All risky moves without hindsight, but look how they all played out originally. Fantastic (mostly) games with large budgets that were original!
It seems that after parting ways with Riccitiello, they lolled back into mediocrity.
It's no surprise a company like EA will be the last to wake up. 2 Billion+ facebook investment, Sony's sudden development in consumer VR and Disney also pouring money into it along with the 30 million for CCP games and more... yet somehow EA can't project even a little into the future and support VR. Unreal, Crybaby engine and Unity all supporting VR, Netflix and other services. But still EA wants to be absolutely sure... Notorious for forcing developers to publish to deadline even if the game isn't ready (BF4, Sim City).
Frontier Development's Elite is incredibly well engineered for Oculus and there is a whole sub-forum they have for VR users (of which I am a member). We VR users are unanimous in never wanting to return to non-VR gaming especially where something like Elite is concerned.
Should also give an acknowledgement to Nadeo for their incredible VR release of Trackmania Stadium and they already intend to release for CV1.
Did you know the Alpha for Starwars battlefront was made on Unreal engine and featured the Oculus logo? Ironic eh?
^^^ Elite Dangerous VR sub-forum.
They were definitely good games, but they weren't risky/innovative games in term of genre and control scheme. A third person shooter, a first person shooter (with jumping that mostly didn't suck), and a third person action-RPG. All with familiar pick-up-and-play control schemes, all familiar genres.
Developing for VR is not as easy. To start with, none of those three games would work immediately in VR: Mirrors Edge is in instant forced-vection mismatch territory, and both Dead Space and Mass Effect would need total UI overhauls, level design overhauls to deal with the camera location being slaved to the user's head (not locked to the character), and effectively a removal of cutscenes and quicktime events as they currently exist.
The fundamentally accepted control paradigm of "left stick moves the character, right stick points the camera" effectively need to be tossed out and rethought from scratch. The camera cannot just hang behind the character and be dragged along. Objects need to have correct real-world scale (for existing models, everything is often WAY off scale). You can;t mess with the horizon orientation. You can't shove the camera around. You need to render every frame in less than 11ms. Normal maps break down at short distances, so you need to LoD in actual geometry. Texture seams are super-obivious, so you need to arrange your texture maps in a less efficient manner to allow for overbleed and geometry needs to avoid edge-to-edge seams, MSAA is effectively a requirement, post-AA isn't good enough. etc.
I have no interest in VR for gaming or even home use. Good for short term sessions in the arcade but its best application, imo, is for 3D modelling and producing architectural visualistations.
Well that's your personal choice. Mine is the opposite. For Elite Dangerous it gives a significant advantage being able to dogfight and look beyond the default frontal zone in a natural way. Also it's far more engaging and believable. Sitting in the cockpit with everything life-size and stereoscopic 3d. No comparison. Someone came along to the frontier forum VR section and was saying how great triple monitor was. The overriding response was that there is no comparison between 3 monitors and the life-size visuals you get with VR. A friend of mine won't play Elite without Oculus and he's just upgraded his GPU in prep for CV1 release.
Half Life 2 is also an incredible experience. It's actually the game I've played most since I purchased DK2 last month. To play it on a standard monitor or TV is to play on a small fixed window. No real immersion although you can engage in any game but without VR there is no real sense of being there. I feel like I'm really seeing the game properly for the first time.
Also not in agreement about the arcade statement. The number one gaming application for VR right now is simulation... This is why it's so popular with Elite Dangerous players. Racing sims too. VR is perfect for flight and driving sims. I think you're gonna see there is no one best application for VR over the next couple of years.
Have you actually spent any time with Oculus?
Riccitiello going from COO to CEO was the biggest disaster to befall EA's storied history of disasters.
Before he took overall charge EA put out Battlefield 1942, Mirror's Edge, Crysis, Dead Space, Army of Two, Rock Band, Bad Company, Timesplitters: Future Perfect and Burnout 3 in the space of six years.
They started new IPs, they took on other people's, they released plenty of medium size franchises to go with the big ones of EA Sports and Battlefield.
Under Riccitiello EA went to the go big or go home approach, only aping the games at the top of the market and only continuing franchises that enjoyed massive sales. In a few years EA under Riccitiello managed to somehow burn out almost it's entire IP library. Should have fired him in 2007.
They'll keep this up with VR, if it's a huge hit they'll cram it into everything whether it's suitable or not.
A bit like the approach you should take to their games, amirite?
Give them a crap game, wait and see if they hate it.
I'm with you on this.
The fact that the people who want this are so dead-set on personal isolation for lengthy periods of time is a bit scary to me really.
Can you imagine sitting in a room, potentially filled with other people, with this bloody brick covering your eyes, a pair of headphones on, and all the other accoutrements.
The future? I damn well hope not.
You do realise that Riccitiello took over in 2007 yes?
Dead Space (2008), Bad Company (2008), Mirror's Edge (2008), Crysis (11/2007), Army of Two (was just a shocking game but still released on 11/2007), Rock Band (again, 11/2007)
All the games you mention bar 1942 and Timesplitters were all released while Riccitiello was CEO....
Games have multi-year development cycles. A year from release, all the game design is done, most of the programming is done, and it's mainly asset creation and QC testing.
Ok, firstly Riccitiello could have pulled the plug on any of those games.
But next, let's look at the games Riccitiello commissioned during his dual tenure 1997-2004 + 2007-2013:
Medal of Honour
Battlefield 1942 (actually released in 2002 while he was president and COO)
Battlefield 2 (released in 2005, thereby fulfilling the whole 'multi-year' development cycle argument
I would keep going, but it's boring trying to justify yourself.
Look at EA now. Can you honestly say that they have progressed as a company? Just because Activision and Ubisoft are vying for the crown of video game public enemy #1, it doesn't mean EA have improved.
Indeed. The idea that people would want to get away from others for a few minutes is utterly appalling.
Far better that they sit staring at a movie screen, or in a corner with a book.
Or perhaps they can turn the PC speakers up, fire up a good old-fashioned NORMAL game on a flat screen like God intended, and tell everyone not to bother them because it's game time.
Seriously, man. Pretty much the entire POINT of every advance in computer graphics to date has been to make more immersive visuals to make escapism easier.
Arguably every advance in entertainment ever has been to enable those who want to get away from reality for a little while.
See also: this link.
So, basically, any form of entertainment then?
Theatre – in a dark room filled with people staring in silence at a stage
Cinema – in a dark room filled with people starting in silence at a screen
TV – in a room filled alone/with other people staring at a screen
Gaming – in a room on your own staring at a screen
Multiplayer gaming – in a room, on your own, staring at a screen, chatting with other people playing the same game.
Actually, out of all of those MP gaming is easily the most social by far. VR doesn’t change that at all, it just makes the shared experience all the more incredible.
This is actual scaremongering nonsense. Firstly you should realise the world is already full of isolated gamers who sit at their eggbox, ps4 or PC playing games for hours ALONE!!! You may be from a nintendo generation where the whole family gather to wave sticks at a TV screen but most "serious" gamers don't do that. Gaming is generally an isolating experience unless you're at a lan.
Can I imagine sitting in a room filled with other people with an experience far better than the best imax covering my head? Absolutely not. Sounds like a family gathering or VR expo. My gaming is just the same now as it was before I got Oculus.
All of my PC gaming friends play their games ALONE and none of them have VR.
For anyone who has actually used Oculus for more than a few minutes the advantages far outweigh and disadvantages. I have an experience that beats the best imax theater. I can sit in a virtual movie theater and watch movies on a very large screen without spending money going to a public theater.
BTW... Bohemia Interactive is interested in developing for VR in the future so we will be seeing Arma with native support.
I'm not really interested in EA/Dice stuff now. I spent so much money on BF3 and really liked it but wasn't ready for BF4 and haven't actually bothered with it since I bought it. Some games although not designed for VR nevertheless work well via vorpx. BF3/BF4 are badly designed in that regard. To display correctly with VR u need a wider FOV which isn't a problem when on foot. As soon as you enter a vehicle the FOV jumps back to default. A shame really because BF3 was quite impressive with DK2. A real sense of being there.
Well, i'll be more than happy to play my PC/PS3/4 while I get to, you know, talk to those around me.
I guess i'll leave the increased introversion to you, so called 'serious' gamers.
As for 'Nintendo' generation. What, you also mean the generation that got friends round with a few beers and played in the early hours and had a laugh about it? Yes, I'm one of ones who actually gets a kick out of hanging out with my friends in person instead of relying on chatting through a PC.
Personally, I like to have the ability to communicate with those around me, but each to their own I suppose.
By the way, the youtube videos of people playing it are HI-Larious. Harks back to the last 3-4 attempts at VR.
Separate names with a comma.