Oculus Rift’s pricing and the future of VR

After a lengthy period of development (for lengthy read glacial), the first major milestone on the road to widespread, high quality VR was reached today with the launch of Oculus Rift pre-orders.
A growing community of developers and enthusiasts have been waiting and learning; hoping to shape an exciting future for this new medium (I’d proudly count myself among them).
I’ll admit that today’s announcement of the price-point – $599 (USD), £499 (GBP) did cause my heart to drop, as it did for many others. The cost is rather higher than was expected, and the reaction on-line was almost solely focused on this. What effect will this pricing have on the adoption of VR in 2016, the fortunes of Oculus’ competitors – and those of developers? Here are my thoughts. Continue reading “Oculus Rift’s pricing and the future of VR”

Franbo VR Christmas Card

Happy Holidays! Hope you’re all having a spectacular holiday season – to get in the mood just before the big day, here’s a tiny VR Christmas card for you to have a wander around in. Take in the sights of the Aurora Borealis, Mrs Miggins’ infamous Pie Shoppe (the Victorian version of Greggs), listen in on the musings of Mr Carmack, the rosy cheeked village pub raconteur, and peek under the Christmas tree to see if there’s something waiting there for you.


Continue reading “Franbo VR Christmas Card”

Tutorial: Adding Player Footstep Audio in UE4 with Blueprints

In this tutorial I’ll talk through the process I used to introduce footstep noises to the player character, using Blueprints – as part of my first VR release “The Caretaker” (free to download on Oculus Share). Audio is a fantastic tool in a developer’s tool-kit that can really contribute to a convincing experience in VR – giving the player grounding in the world you’ve created, and greatly enhancing their immersion.

It turns out that this is straightforward using UE4 blueprints. Here’s a look at the approach I used for the First Person Character Blueprint – I expect there are better ways out there to achieve this, but this was quick to add, and pretty convincing. Continue reading “Tutorial: Adding Player Footstep Audio in UE4 with Blueprints”