One of the big selling points of HTC’s Vive virtual reality headset, is that it can “do roomscale.” That means users can get up and walk around in the real world, while ensconced in virtual reality. It turns out though that the Oculus Rift can do that pretty well too, you just need to be a bit more careful not to bump your head.
Because the Vive has targeted roomscale experiences from the get go, it pushed to develop a built in camera within the headset and what’s called the chaperone system. This manifests as a translucent grid around the edge of your playspace and offers a great visual aid to prevent you bumping into anything.
In comparison, the Rift doesn’t have that, which means there is some danger of bumping into things, as the guys at UploadVR found during their CV1 testing.
However they did find that the field of view and tracking range of the Oculus Rift’s Constellation camera was surprisingly good, offering a near room-scale experience from the get go. With a second sensor placed somewhere behind the player, it’s not hard to imagine the Rift offering a comparably expansive space to play in as the Vive.
Jump to 1:20 if you want to see the problem with a lack of Chaperone
You just might want some form of real world indicator that you’re getting close to the edge of it, as smashing your brand new headset into a wall as you try and look around a non-existent corner, would be a real shame.
KitGuru Says: There are some issues with cable length, but it’s great to see that the Rift does offer similar freedom to the Vive. Hopefully Oculus can come up with its own version of the chaperone system too.