A new era for gaming: Virtual reality expands to gaming consoles

photo courtesy of wikimedia commons

by Victoria Navarro

Bouncing a ball across the screen with nothing more than the motion of moving a joystick back and forth can easily be one of the most anticlimactic experiences of your life. Perhaps taking on the role of a rocket in space just to shoot incoming meteors may be more exhilarating with the additional spam, or constant pressing, of a single red button.

Although these arcade games may seem simple and dull, they are classics from the 1970’s that started the hype for gaming. Throughout the years, these games served as the first step into creating modern gaming, and even virtual reality.

Unlike the past, technology has developed to the point where game developers can mold a game’s visuals into looking extremely realistic, allowing players to become submerged in its surroundings. Games like “Fallout 3” undoubtedly exceed that of the Atari or Nintendo 64 in terms of its graphics. The standards of gaming has increased with time because of dramatic progressions in storytelling, as well as visuals.

Although gaming visuals look realistic on a 2D screen, gaming developers took the step into making games appear as realistic as possible. Within the past decade, people have been attempting to create consoles that can allow players to place themselves in the shoes of a game’s main character. For instance, a gaming headset known as the Oculus Rift mimicked the players head movements, ultimately aiming to create human engagement with the game. It created a 3D world for players allowing them to see themselves in the game, advancing the idea of what virtual reality is.

However, despite its major progression, the Oculus Rift went back to poor, pixelated graphics. Not only that, but the headset was only compatible with a small amount of games with most being in the horror genre.

On the other hand, Sony has been working to develop a virtual reality headset. Since there were major doubts in its success, the inventory was scarce since their main goal was to sell a million headsets in the first six months of its release. Although the company set their expectations low, the sales surpassed their goals with nearly a million purchased within four months.

Compared to the Oculus Rift, the Sony’s Playstation VR aimed to create full engagement between the player and the game. The graphics dramatically improved, and it even provides a camera and handheld controller.

Gaming has only existed for around 50 years, but technological advancements have allowed developers to shift from simple arcade games to virtual reality. With all of these progressions, there is no say as to how far gaming can advance, but its evolution has just begun.

Author: Plaid Press

Granada Hills Charter High School newspaper

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