Seemingly gone are the days riding your bike down to the local mall, wolf-down a slice of pizza, and then hit the Arcade to drop every quarter (or tokens) you had into a slew of games. Gaming consoles sounded the death knell for arcades as they began to dominate the industry starting in the early 80’s and by the late 90’s, most arcades were all but gone. The dawn of the 21st century brought with it affordable and easy to use development boards and other electronics, which makers used to build their own games, essentially bringing the arcade into their own homes. Makers have made everything from tabletop machines to full-on cabinets to bring back the nostalgia that once was and this roundup is just a few of the unique builds that are popping up in homes all over the world.
We’ve walked you through all sorts of DIY projects for the Raspberry Pi, but this one might be the simplest. You’ll have your retro game console—complete with old-school controllers—up and running in less than 30 minutes. All you need to do is install the operating system on an SD card and do some simple file sharing from your PC.
You might take your mouse for granted, but it’s come a long way since the trackball was first prototyped. Today’s pro gamers don’t just need any mouse though: accuracy is just one of the key elements that add up to a definitive mouse, and while sensor technology has evolved leaps and bounds since you were cleaning out the trackball buried in the belly of your wired rodent, mouse tech continues to be developed and enhanced. Comfort and grip is every bit as important, something any poor soul forced to endure an Apple mouse for any length of time will tell you, all while rubbing their crooked hand.
No, what’s bringing the joystick back is a return of the games that were once its lifeblood. There may not be any new X-Wing games on the horizon, but there are still two very big, new space games you can play in 2015. Elite: Dangerous is the latest instalment in a series that is now 30 years old, while Star Citizen is being made by Chris “Wing Commander” Roberts. The former is now formally and officially “released”, while the latter, despite being a work in progress, is still continuously playable for those who have backed its colossal crowd-funding scheme.
Current gen-gaming controllers such as the new Xbox One and PlayStation 4 controllers are limited to rumble packs, and while both new consoles feature additional vibration motors to enhance the gaming experience; they are limited in scope and a fair bit of a nuisance. Although the vibration motors provide feedback to your in-game actions, it is limited to just that: a vibration. There are no other physical attributes of virtual objects conveyed through the device….
Possible Enterprise Use-Cases
Physical representations of virtual objects is a great start, but companies such as Tactical Haptics can take this technology a step further by re-transmitting physical interactions back into virtual reality. As I had mentioned in this previous post, “the ability to interact with the digital world via physical objects or even our own hands removes any limitations, and allows users to get a more tangible perception of the object they are interacting with.”
In its attempt to make console gaming more accessible, Microsoft has announced that it will be developing universal apps which can run across Xbox One and Windows 10, as well as smartphones and other mobile devices using the upcoming OS.
“Our goal with gaming at Microsoft is to allow people to play games wherever they are […] We know for developers that it’s critically important for you to reach those gamers wherever they are,” said Phil Spencer, head of Microsoft’s video games branch at the Game Developers Conference in San Francisco yesterday.
But the Vive? It’s like nothing that’s ever come before.
HTC and Valve pulled this sensory illusion off in two ways. First, there’s positional tracking. The HTC Vive uses two sensors you need to hang on the wall at a 90 degree angle. These track you pretty much wherever you are or whatever you do. Crouch, jump, lean, turn your head, tilt, look up, down, left, right, and the system will be able to keep tabs on exactly where you are based on the position of your head.