Oculus’ new experimental API combines virtual reality with your real environment


Picture for article titled Oculus & # 39;  The new experimental API combines virtual reality with your real environment

Photo: Josh Edelson (Getty Images)

Update for Facebook’s Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality system will allow developers to include actual video from VR headphone sensors into their games to create “mixed reality experiences”.

With Passthrough Experimental API, Oculus’ new programming programming interface, developers can customize the way the player’s environment appears through their VR headsets, applying effects and filters, and even displaying the real world to specific areas in the game. TThe API will be introduced to Unity developers in an upcoming software update, “with support for other development platforms coming in the future,” Oculus VR said in a blog post. Friday.

It’s easy to imagine a multitude of cool ways games can incorporate your physical environment into gaming. One gif shared by Oculus with the API in action shows a player drawing on the walls, immediately reminiscent of a color-based lawn war splatoon.

Gif: Eye VR (Facebook)

The ability to switch the opacity of mixed reality, or how much real or virtual you see at any given time, and which is shown in another gif, could be easily integrated with some sort of puzzle-solving mechanics.

Enemies in the game can also hide behind your furniture due to sneak attacks. I’m already a total chicken when it comes to horror games, so the idea that monsters can jump out from behind my own couch in the living room makes me cry.

Gif: Eye VR (Facebook)

The announcement included several examples of API use, in addition to the game. Oculus said it could improve productivity and enable remote collaboration by incorporating real-life keyboards and desks. Users could also interact with virtual content without losing the ability to interact with their household or pets.

Asked if first-generation Quest users can expect to have access, Facebook told people at UploadVR that the API only comes in search 2. Reduced version Go through the technology is already available on Facebook’s Quest, Quest 2 and Rift S headphones, allowing users to peek into what’s going on around them while still wearing the headphones.

Gif: Eye VR (Facebook)

In its announcement, Oculus added that the API was designed “with privacy in mind.”

“Applications using the Passthrough API cannot access, view or store images or videos of your physical environment from the Oculus Quest 2 sensor. This means that raw images from the device’s sensor are processed on the device,” the company said.

As for when developers can expect to deliver their games using Passthrough to players, Oculus said it aims to launch a production version “later this year.”

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