Custom controllers: Creating a more immersive experience using Vive…

Ever used your Vive or Oculus controller and felt that something was not quite right when playing some games? In our VR games, we use generic motion controllers for every hand interaction and while that makes designing games more easily, it always felt to us that it is immersion breaking. Using a sword to a gun or simply as hands, they should feel different. Hence when the Vive Tracker was created, we were extremely excited by the possibilities and accessories that will be made by 3rd party retailers.

The premise of the Vive Tracker was simple. You attach the tracker to any object and it will track the object in the virtual space. There are also some pins which make it easy to add buttons to the tracker. This will enable developers to create their own controllers that feel more like how the virtual object should feel.

However, up til today the only accessories that you can purchase for your Vive Tracker are:

  1. Racket Sports Set
  2. Hyperkin Hyperblaster
  3. Full body tracking TrackBelt and TrackStrap by Rebuff Reality

We have seen a few other examples but they are all custom made and not sold. We understand the reason is because unless there is enough demand for VR, the mass production cost of making mass market accessories will be too high to make it viable. However as developers, we strive to push immersion as high as possible and we feel that other than vision and audio, tactile and haptic feedback are the next most important factor.

Golf Club Controller in action at 0:12

For our upcoming title IgKnight Golf to be released on the major game distribution platform, we have the standard version with the usual controllers. We have already a event version ready to play and we designed this version for use with the custom golf controller. Once you play the game with a golf club controller, going back to using the generic controller feels very unsatisfying and you will feel like that is the way it should be played.

We can provide licensees a example design of how to convert a real golf club into a VR controller with the Vive tracker. (or we can make one for you on a case-by-case basis).