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Reports: Valve making their own VR HMD and apparently a new VR Half-Life

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It appears Valve are truly getting more serious about Virtual Reality as they appear to be making their own headset. On top of that, apparently a new Half-Life VR game is coming.

Leaked to an imgur album, which contains multiple shots of the new hardware. These includes shots clearly showing a Valve logo:

The uploadvr website has claimed they have had it confirmed by various sources that it is in fact real. As someone who really wants to try VR, I am hopeful Valve will be able to give it a decent price. The current price for most VR hardware is simply out of reach for a lot of people, myself included.

Even more interesting, is that Valve are apparently working on a new Half-Life which will be a VR title. That certainly could be one way to push adoption, I imagine that would turn a few heads that otherwise wouldn't have been interested. Could backfire too of course, if it's VR-only. To keep expectations in check though, reportedly it's a Half-Life 2 prequel and not Half-Life 3.

Valve News Network also have this video up about the Half-Life game which is interesting:

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Considering Microsoft is making moves buying up more studios and making another attempt to fix up the Windows Store, along with some bigger players leaving Steam like Activision, EA, Bethesda with the new Fallout and all this together should make Valve at least a bit worried. Their current growth will only last so long, if others continue to leave and become exclusive to other stores.

Valve obviously need to make moves of their own and it looks like doubling down on VR is what they had in mind. The amount of people that currently own a VR headset as reported on the Steam Hardware Survey is still extremely low (lower than the Linux share) so Valve really will need a decent price on it.

It does make you think about Valve's future plans. They're doing this new VR hardware, some new games and pushing Steam Play to get more games on Linux. Would it be too far-fetched to consider a new Steam Machine? One continued to be powered by their SteamOS Linux distribution that allows VR support out of the box along with a huge back catalogue of previously Windows-only games.

That's a pipe dream of mine though really and I'm basically thinking out loud at this point, as I'm sure it's just different teams working on their own thing. However, if it did all come together, that could be amazing.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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94 comments
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mike456 11 November 2018 at 1:07 pm UTC
I've got a Samsung Odyssey while waiting for OpenXR but am looking forward to update it to the next Generation VR.
Alien Isolation is huge fun in VR but also X-Plane.
Eike 11 November 2018 at 1:18 pm UTC
Power-Metal-GamesOk. I'm sure that there are some people that find it interesting. That was only my experience. And also what the guy who gave it to me concluded: people wasn't willing to give 1€ to play with it. They would try it and they were like: "Ok, interesting... but let's play Dota!". At the end he sold all the VR sets.

I find the technology and what it does with my (and other people's) brain nothing less than incredible. I do not own a headset and cannot judge what develops on the gaming side, though. In the end, people won't buy it for incredible technology and brain f**k, but when and if playing games on it is big fun. Either way people should give it a try when having the possibility.
danniello 2 years 11 November 2018 at 1:18 pm UTC
Very risky move. VR market is very expensive and... very unprofitable.

Companies that tried and maybe not clearly failed, but definitely they are not very profitable:
Oculus (before Facebook acquisition)
HTC (with Valve as R&D) - full package (Vive Pro + base stations + wireless adapter) is ridiculously expensive... Now they are going to mobile...
Facebook - going to mobile with Oculus Go
Microsoft Mixed Reality

I'm not sure only about Sony... Clearly PlayStation VR is "the winner" at this point, but probably Sony expected much more sales of VR headsets and games...

Half-Life VR? I want to be wrong, but it could be disaster comparable only to Diablo Immortal. It is not what Half-Life fans want! At least they informed us about it before official announcement, so perhaps expectations will be reduced.
g000h 11 November 2018 at 1:21 pm UTC
I've tried out a full range of VR headsets, and here are my thoughts on VR tech:

Yes, you require a decent GPU to get the required level of performance, e.g. GTX 1080 or better (or a PS4 Pro console or equivalent)

I find them somewhat uncomfortable, and I wouldn't want to wear one for gaming for longer than 30 minutes at a time.

They are an interesting and different experience from regular gaming, that is very immersive.

Both the cost and the lack of appeal hinders me from making a purchase.

Lack of appeal:
- I anticipate that I wouldn't use it much.
- There aren't many compelling, quality games that I'd want to play on it.
- I'd only want to use it in short stretches, e.g. 30 minutes at a time.

On top of that, as already mentioned, it is good to have a VR "space" - i.e. dedicated room for moving around, rather than sitting at a regular desk doing VR.
kuhpunkt 11 November 2018 at 1:26 pm UTC
dannielloHalf-Life VR? I want to be wrong, but it could be disaster comparable only to Diablo Immortal. It is not what Half-Life fans want! At least they informed us about it before official announcement, so perhaps expectations will be reduced.

But why not? It would be like Doom VFR. A spin off, that's not required, not a sequel and integral part of the story. HL3 only for VR would be a disaster, but something else in the HL universe? I'm waiting.
ageres 11 November 2018 at 1:32 pm UTC
A new photo leaked:
image
Dedale 11 November 2018 at 1:46 pm UTC
On a more positive note, in the niche market of flight simulators, i have seen people excited by VR.
lelouch 11 November 2018 at 1:48 pm UTC
kuhpunktI'm still baffled how many people think that HL3 would be a VR game. That makes no sense and would be a very very dumb idea.

No, it wouldn't. Obviously Valve is waiting for the right time - VR is affordable for everyone in the future like it was for smartphones (2007) at some point, and the internet and computers in the past and so on ....
kuhpunkt 11 November 2018 at 1:54 pm UTC
lelouch
kuhpunktI'm still baffled how many people think that HL3 would be a VR game. That makes no sense and would be a very very dumb idea.

No, it wouldn't. Obviously Valve is waiting for the right time - VR is affordable for everyone in the future like it was for smartphones (2007) at some point, and the internet and computers in the past and so on ....

So? That's still dumb. That's like making 2 movies and then releasing the third part of the story as a card game.
lelouch 11 November 2018 at 1:56 pm UTC
dannielloVery risky move. VR market is very expensive and... very unprofitable.

No, it is not. You are thinking only in the "here and now"-category. A good business-company plans for the future. (e.g. smartphones before you even knew they exist <-> smartphones today)
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