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5K All-In-One VR Headset Comes With Its Own Virtual World

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Arpara reveals two VR headsets and its arparaland virtual social platform powered by blockchain.

Last week, Beijing-based VR company arpara revealed two 5K VR headsets during its global reveal event called “Discover Yourself in a Parallel Universe.”

Both the arpara VR headset and arpara all-in-one VR headset feature dual 1.03-inch 2560 x 2560 resolution micro-OLED displays, resulting in a combined viewing resolution of 5K x 2.5K. According to arparar, these micro-OLED displays feature a 3514 PPI, meaning no more pesky “screen door effect.” Both devices also have a 1μs response time and 95-degree field-of-view. For reference, that’s 6-degrees more than the Oculus Quest 2.

Image Credit: arpara

Coming in at approximately 200 grams, the arpara VR headset is capable of connecting with phones, consoles, and computers. Combined with a 6DoF position tracking kit—such as the companies NOLO CV1 Air VR spatial tracking kit—the device can be used to run PCVR applications with support for up to 120Hz refresh rates. The arpara VR headset is available now for pre-order and is expected to ship this August for $599.

The arpara all-in-one VR headset, on the other hand, weighs approximately 380 grams and features six onboard cameras for 6DoF inside-out tracking, removing the need for a separate tracking kit. This all-in-one device is capable of streaming SteamVR games and apps both wired and wirelessly with support for up to 90Hz refresh rates. No word yet on an official price. The headset is expected to begin shipping after the launch of the arpara VR headset later this summer.

Image Credit: arpara

Arpara is also launching its own dedicated virtual social platform. Launching this August on arpara VR headsets, arparaland is described by the company as a virtual world where users can customize their own avatars and times, participate in relaxing activities, conduct business, and more. And because digital assets on the platform are recorded on regulated blockchains, users can profit from their work by minting their digital creations as NFT’s for auction.

As previously mentioned, arpara is the same company behind the NOLO 6DoF spatial tracking kit. With the launch of the arpara VR headset, the arpara all-in-one, and arparaland platform, it appears as though the China-based company is in the early stages of establishing its own VR ecosystem.

Image Credit: arpara

We’re excited to learn more about arpara’s new hardware when the arpara VR headset and arparaland platform launch later this summer.

For more information visit arpara.net.

Feature Image Credit: arpara

The post 5K All-In-One VR Headset Comes With Its Own Virtual World appeared first on VRScout.

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Source: https://vrarnews.com/details/5k-all-in-one-vr-headset-comes-with-its-own-virtual-world-60be82a3dfbe13847c8ba3c4?s=rss

AR/VR

Review: Eternal Starlight

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Games like Elite Dangerous can offer some pretty epic battle scenarios to those who love space-based battles but they also take a lot of time and effort. If you’re looking for something far more manageable, with a real-time strategy (RTS) flavour, pick-up and play gameplay and some decent replay options then White Noise Games’ new virtual reality (VR) title Eternal Starlight ticks plenty of those boxes.

Eternal Starlight

Set in a future where mankind is no longer living on Earth because we’ve ruined it again for the millionth time, Eternal Starlight revolves around our new home of Proxima. This needs defending at all costs and to do this you need to build and manage an armada of spaceships. These consist of both human and alien technology gleaned from friendly races you choose help along the way, in turn giving Eternal Starlight plenty of scope when it comes to strategy whilst encouraging you back to give it another pop.

Because Eternal Starlight isn’t an RPG where you spend hour after hour toiling away, carefully building your fleet in an expansive world. This is an RTS with permadeath where you can fail a mission but if you die then that’s it, all those resources and ships are gone in an instant and you’re back to square one, kind of. It’s this kind of functionality that serves titles like Until You Fall and In Death: Unchained so well, dropping you back to try again, tweaking your strategy as you do so. And it works just as well here.      

You’re given a single flagship and one accompanying fighter to being with and via each mission, you can earn resources to buy more fighters, hull and shield upgrades or, if you’ve got a lot of cash some bigger support ships which can be independently controlled. So you can have them in formation around your flagship, off on their own scanning nearby objects of interest or conducting a nice flanking manoeuvre when in battle. They can all be upgraded in a similar fashion with your flagship having the greater number of weapon and mod slots to turn it into a proper space tank.

Eternal Starlight

Eternal Starlight isn’t a game you figure out on the first playthrough as there are plenty of little facets to keep you thinking. While the campaign storyline does suffice don’t expect some epic space opera, its way too bare-bones for that. But it does set up the other races with a total of five which you can align yourself with. Doing so will give you access to their technology, from ships to upgradeable parts. If you really focus your mission selection on one race they’ll provide reinforcements for the big boss battles – which is certainly needed.

Your main opponents are the Kraya who plan on attacking Proxima in seven days, which equates to completing seven missions of your choosing. Each run will randomly generate what missions appear which is great for making each run slightly different. Sometimes you can focus on the alliance of one race, whilst at other times a more balanced approach is required. Whatever you choose those seven days remain locked and you have to complete the impending battle whether you’re ready or not. Win, and you can continue, given another week to prepare for the next onslaught. Even after death and the frustration of losing all your tech you’ll instantly want to try again, Eternal Starlight can get quite addictive.

The battlefields are fairly compact and the majority of the main missions can be completed in under two minutes, usually consisting of protecting a friendly vessel or just cleansing a region of enemies. Battles are viewed from a third-person perspective where you grab a ship and plot its course by dragging it along. Now, this means that for the most part Eternal Starlight is always viewed from the widest possible viewpoint, moving your ships around like little toys. There is the ability to zoom in and get right in the thick of it during battles, which looks good yet it hampers your ability to command your fleet massively. There is a handy watch that highlights each vessels health and from where you can activate special abilities but it never felt like it did enough to become an essential tool.

Eternal Starlight

Gameplay tends to be slow and methodical, so while it can get visually busy with lots of cool little projectiles and ships flying around, they don’t always instantly react to a command, especially where movement is concerned. At points, the flagship just spun in a circle for several seconds as if it was unclear about which way to go, as a gigantic explosion began to engulf it. As all the levels are set in space you know you’re going to get a lot of stars and the odd planet but the actual battlefields can be fairly sparse at times. There is a bit of environmental variation with asteroids floating around or clouds of dust to hide in but a bit more would’ve been nice.

If you’re playing on the Oculus Quest then you also have the option to choose hand tracking. Eternal Starlight and hand tracking seemed like an ideal combination (at points it is), however, the feature is still too inconsistent to reliably complete later missions. Grabbing ships was finicky and trying to draw a flight route was always a gamble. Another little interaction issue is with pressing buttons. In the main hub, you’re presented with flat panel screens like you’re on the Enterprise. But everything requires a finger highlight then a button press – or a hand tracked finger pinch. It doesn’t feel satisfying or immersive.  

There are other little annoyances with Eternal Starlight. The intro cockpit where you can accidentally hit the story trailer which then can’t be cancelled whilst waiting for the videogame to load. Or the inability to twist the world alongside shrinking/enlarging it with your hands/controllers. On the plus side, Eternal Starlight is very comfortable to play seated, standing and in roomscale, with the option to activate joystick movement and turning if you really need it.

Eternal Starlight

Most importantly, Eternal Starlight has lots of replayability. Not only do you have the random missions and the varied alliances, doing so permanently unlocks their ships to use within the skirmish mode. It’s still a single-player where you can mix and match yours and the AI fleets before each battle, getting a great feel for your opponent’s abilities.

Eternal Starlight is available for PC VR headsets and Oculus Quest, certainly feeling more attuned to the standalone with the paired back graphics and the built-in hand tracking. There’s plenty of content on offer if you love RTS gaming with options galore to keep you coming back for more. Even though it isn’t a perfect experience and larger, more insane battles would be great, Eternal Starlight is still wonderfully fun to play.

80% Awesome

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Source: https://www.vrfocus.com/2021/06/review-eternal-starlight/

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‘ALTDEUS: Beyond Chronos’ Episode Yamato DLC Comes to Quest, Trailer Here

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ALTDEUS: Beyond Chronos (2020), the anime-style narrative adventure from Japan-based studio MyDearest, has finally released its paid DLC ‘Episode Yamato’ on the Oculus Store for Quest.

Both Quest & Quest 2 users are officially the first to jump into the game’s DLC expansion, as it’s a timed exclusive on that platform. Here’s how the studio describes it:

In the new DLC, ALTDEUS: Beyond Chronos EPISODE YAMATO, you play as Second Lieutenant Yamato Amanagi, a member of Prometheus and pilot of the Ares Makhia. Chloe tries to escape from Prometheus with Anima, but Yamato stands in her way carrying the hopes of his comrades – to bring her back or die trying. The Swordstrike system, the awesome power of Ares Makhia’s sword, provides you with new interactive experiences, taking approximately 2 hours to complete all of the story branches.

The expansion sells for $10 on the Oculus Store, which you can find on the game’s Quest listing. It includes the choice of English and Japanese voice acting, and Simplified Chinese and French subtitles.

Besides the Quest version of ALTDEUS: Beyond Chronos, the narrative adventure is available across all major VR headsets, including SteamVR headsets, Oculus Rift, and PSVR. The studio says Episode Yamato will arrive on other platforms at some point in the future, however it hasn’t announced when that will be.

ALTDEUS: Beyond Chronos, which boasts 15–20 hours of branching storylines, regularly finds itself in the top 20 highest-rated Quest games. At the time of this writing the game sits at a solid 4.79 out of 5 from around 850 user reviews.

By the way: you may recognize the singer behind Episode Yamato’s main theme song, MEDDLER; it’s sung by Suzuki Konomi, who has been featured in a host of anime series including The Pet Girl of Sakurasou, No Game No Life, and Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World.

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Source: https://www.roadtovr.com/altdeus-beyond-chronos-yamato-dlc-quest-2/

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5 VR Headsets Making Headlines in 2021

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Lucid Reality Labs

Every year is bringing us more spatial devices, advancing fidelity, field of vision and general feeling of immersion for both business and consumer users. 2021 is no exception, with tech giants announcing and giving hints of the next big news for Virtual Reality (VR) headsets. The VR market has continued its growth over the past years and is predicted to reach $20.9 billion by 2025. Amongst spatial technologies VR has the largest number of available both enterprise and consumer grade devices.

Virtual Reality technology has gone a long way with its transformation, providing users with unique possibilities to submerge into a completely new or recreated reality. With the pandemic caused continuous limitations, more businesses and consumers are turning to VR in order to solve the challenges of social distancing, remote work and education. The immersive capabilities of VR are truly infinite, allowing users to submerge into a variety of experiences from upskilling and reskilling, connected virtual work environments or even social interactive spaces. The advancement of VR devices delivers maximum realism, connecting people and organizations, while remaining safe and remote.

Last year brought us many VR innovations. With large tech players like Facebook with Oculus Quest 2, Varjo with Varjo VR-3, HP headset HP Reverb G2, launching their new VR headsets. As well as growing numbers of VR users, with the expected number of installed base worldwide, to surpass the 34 million mark by 2024. The big question is, whether we should be expecting any major announcements in 2021?

To answer that, we will be looking into the five VR devices that are making headlines in 2021 in one or the other way.

1. How VR could bring transhumanism to the masses

2. How Augmented Reality (AR) is Reshaping the Food Service Industry

3. ExpiCulture — Developing an Original World-Traveling VR Experience

4. Enterprise AR: 7 real-world use cases for 2021

HTC VIVE VR

The HTC seemingly new device, HTC VIVE Air VR, has recently made headlines after winning a design award from the World Design Guide. What seemed like a major leak of the new HTC consumer headset, turned out to be only a design concept. With many getting excited over the idea of a fitness-oriented VR headset, a device that could be much appreciated by many consumers in the time of pandemic. Even though the big announcement did not follow, the feeling of anticipation is clearly in the air. On April 9th, 2021 HTC VIVE has tweeted an image of what could be their next enterprise focused VR device. Considering the upcoming VIVECON 2021 happening on May 11 and 12, we may be looking ahead to a much-anticipated HTC VR headset launch.

Image Source: https://bit.ly/2R4EmyF

PICO NEO 3

The new All-in-One (AIO) VR device by Pico Interactive, Pico Neo 3, has started its pre-sale on April 14th, 2021 and is expected to launch on the Asian market already in May. Pico Neo 3, a high fidelity 6 Degree of Freedom (DOF) consumer focused device is promised to deliver a higher level of immersion, while providing better interactions and perception. The Neo 3 is promised to significantly stand out from its predecessor Pico Neo 2, with double the CPU, optical positional and controllers tracking improvements. The next level of Pico Interactive devices is anticipated to compete with Oculus Quest 2, which was launched in October 2020. You can find more about the new Pico Neo 3 device and its comparison to Oculus Quest 2 here.

Image Source: https://bit.ly/3sft5so

HP REVERB G2 OMNICEPT EDITION VR

In late September 2020, HP unveiled the coming of its Omnicept Solution, an ecosystem like platform which includes the world’s most intelligent VR headset, the Reverb G2 Omnicept Edition VR and SDK aimed at developers. The enhanced new VR headset promised to deliver a number of enterprise focused features like cutting-edge optics, engagement level tracking, foveated rendering and much more. Additionally, in their recent news post, Tobii has confirmed the built-in Tobii Eye Tracking integrated into the new HP VR headset, which is an excellent feature for any enterprise aimed VR device. Originally communicated to be available sometime in spring, the company has finally announced the coming of the Omnicept Edition VR headset and Omnicept Solution SDK in May 2021. The official press release included a statement from David Weinstein, the VR and AR Director of NVIDIA, promising their collaboration to be a step forward in the advancement of the VR experience fidelity.

HUAWEI VR GLASS 6DOF GAME SET

The big news from Huawei came in late October 2020, when the company announced its new VR game set. Originally promised to be available for developers only at the end of 2020, the device was expected to become available on the Asian consumers market sometime in April 2021. The new consumer aimed VR device promises smoother and more free interactions, along with higher sensing and precision capabilities. With the availability of the new device Huawei is preparing to deliver an improved quality of game and application content in the future. The device promises to provide a variety of consumer oriented features like the IMAX theater-like home experience, screen projections and mobile device connection capabilities.

Image Source: https://bit.ly/3aIlufW

OCULUS AIR LINK & INFINITE OFFICE FOR OCULUS QUEST 2

Even though it is not a device launch, Oculus Air Link is a grand leap forward for Oculus Quest 2 consumer grade VR headsets. The new feature, announced mid-April 2021, is promised to be rolled out as part of the v28 software update, with original Oculus Link launched for beta testing in late 2019. The upcoming Air Link is communicated to allow users to wirelessly play PC VR games on the Oculus Quest 2 devices. The next level of gameplay is to be achieved with the native 120 Hz support. The second exciting news is coming from the Oculus Infinite Office update. This VR workspace is designed to feel realistic and submerging, while providing a connected yet safe experience that enables users to interact with the real world. The new update allows you to bring your physical desk into the VR environment as well as connect a physical keyboard to the Oculus Quest 2.

2021 has accelerated enterprise and consumers shift towards virtual spaces, serving as a mean to work, connect and interact safely and remotely. The expanding availability of VR devices is making it possible for more users to embrace this technology. The race to deliver consumer focused light-weight high-fidelity headset has never been this swift. It is an exciting time for VR experience development, as global tech giants are moving entire industries towards the adaptation of VR technology to become a part of our everyday lives.

Author: Anna Rohi, Lucid Reality Labs Senior Marketing & Communications Manager

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Source: https://arvrjourney.com/5-vr-headsets-making-headlines-in-2021-328c5ac5135?source=rss—-d01820283d6d—4

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“Only” a LUT creator

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Michael Porter
“Only” a LUT creator
“Only” a LUT creator

I sometimes hear creators who make “advanced” filters and lenses talk about “simple” LUT/color correction/grain/overlay filters as if they were “inferior.” This needs to stop.

I am going to be referring to any lens that primarily consists of a LUT/color correction, grain, or any other 2D overlay (like a frame around the image or an emoji crown) as a “simple” filter in this article just to keep things, well, simple.

Not all lens and filter creators have a background in computer/motion graphics, game design, or computer science. I know a creator who started out creating “simple” filters before they saw the potential of Lens Studio and started teaching themselves 3D. They are now a verified lens creator.

What if instead of receiving encouragement from the community, this individual had been talked down to because of the types of filters they were creating? Would they have kept at it and become a top AR creator? Personally, I almost quit making Snapchat lenses after my very first one. I shared it on Reddit and was accused of stealing someone else’s idea. I had never heard of this individual before and had no idea you could even search for lenses. I had simply made something I thought was fun and was super discouraged by the reaction of this individual. But I kept at it and I’m super glad I did. Never talk about someone’s filters as being inferior; they might be just getting started.

You need to have a good understanding of light and color to create a nice looking LUT/color correction filter. If you want to argue that you can just buy presets and make your filters with those, you can say the same for 3D models and other parts of “advanced” filters and lenses. Loading a LUT into Lens Studio or Spark AR is itself super easy to do, but creating the actual LUT can take some time and possibly lots of trial and error.

A photographer might really enjoy sharing their presets as LUT filters and have no desire to create 3D face masks. A graphic designer might love creating intricate frames to celebrate different holidays. Perhaps a fan of vintage photography loves recreating different film effects with grain overlays. And that’s okay. There are no rules about what types of effects you need to be creating to be called an augmented reality creator.

People love using “simple” filters. AR filters are often used in messaging, and quite often people want something simple to express their mood or enhance their photos and videos. I created a lens that does nothing more than sharpen the image and add a slight color correction. Within a few months it surpassed 1 billion views — that is billion with a “b.” I don’t need to raise my eyebrows and open my mouth to transform my head into a dragon every time I want to message someone. I just want something that I think looks good. Sometimes that is something crazy, but usually it’s something simple.

We often look at AR filters and lenses in isolation; we forget that they can come in groups. Sure, someone might be creating lots of filters that individually are “simple.” But sometimes these “simple” filters are part of a larger series that tell a story, express a feeling, or celebrate something. There are both technical and artistic sides to augmented reality, and I think often we focus too much on the technical side of things.

It is true that there are some AR creators who are pumping out “simple” filters left and right who see it as an easy path to verification ( it’s not). But some of those clout chasers are also creating “advanced” lenses and filters, so having some arbitrary cutoff for what constitutes a “real” AR filter won’t stop that.

If you enjoy making LUT filters, keep doing it. If you enjoy creating emoji crown filters, keep doing it. If you want to join the Spark Partner Network or become a Lens Creative Partner, you will probably need to move beyond the “simple” filters and venture into 3D or coding, but never think that you aren’t an AR creator. If you enjoy what you are doing and are bringing joy to others, you are a successful creator.

Don’t hate on people who are “only” making “simple” filters. Each creator is at a different place in their AR journey and each creator has their own goals. A real AR creator is someone who enjoys doing what they do, is constantly learning, and helping others. Let’s build each other up.

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Source: https://arvrjourney.com/only-a-lut-creator-57a3040f544?source=rss—-d01820283d6d—4

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