When the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) head-mounted display (HMD) was first introduced a few years ago, it was very much a videogame-focused device. Since that time the VR industry has rapidly expanded, with the technology now looking to be used in a number of different ways, expanding far beyond videogames. Those that are hoping to primarily use HMDs such as the Oculus Rift for these experiences shouldn’t worry, though, as even the kit’s creator thinks that VR will be gaming-focused for at least ‘the next few years’.
Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey said as much this weekend on Oculus VR’s panel at the South By Southwest Festival (SXSW). “One of the reasons we’re so focused on gaming, besides being gamers today, is that all of the tools and talent to create real-time immersive 3D environments with high fidelity, it is the games industry,” Luckey stated. “It’s game tools and it’s game engines and it’s game programmers. Even as virtual reality expands to things like architecture and social tools and sports or whatever, it’s going to be the games industry that drives that.
“And, in a way, it’s not that virtual reality is going to expand to other things as much as the games industry is going to start encompassing a lot more different kinds of content. So you will see other things but right now, today and probably for the next few years, it’s going to be very gaming focused just because that’s where it all is right now.”
Oculus VR has placed a huge emphasis on the potential of VR videogames over the past year, hiring Naughty Dog founder Jason Rubin as a Head of Worldwide Studios, looking to develop first-party videogames while the company also publishes other titles such as Lucky’s Tale from Playful Corp. The VR specialist has also taken some of its first major steps outside of videogames in 2015, announcing its film-centric division, Oculus Story Studio.
VRFocus will continue to follow Oculus VR’s work, reporting back with any further updates.