One of the pleasant surprises we found whilst poking around the vast halls was finding a booth with the latest Cyberith Virtualiser prototype being demoed by Cyberith’s founder and inventor Tuncay Cakmak. He kindly agreed not only to demonstrate the Virtualiser but to talk to me about him, the team and how the device came to be.

Straight From The Workshop

Tuncay, beaming with infectious enthusiastic, was still buzzing from gallons of Red Bull and adrenalin that comes from barely making it to his booth at Gamescom, having just got ‘Prototype 2′ up and running hours before his brother was due to drive them all to Cologne for the show. Last minute coding on their proprietary software had to be done on the bus in-transit so it’s probably quite understandable why Tuncay seemed pleased to be there at all. To sweeten the situation, they’d landed a booth literally right next to Oculus’ – seemingly this was fate.

The Virtualiser was an imposing site, although not huge by any stretch. It had a design aesthetic reminiscent of a high-budget 80’s Sci-Fi movie but within it’s chassis lies technology that could shape the future of VR Gaming.

We’ll have more detailed write-up of what it’s like to use the Virtualiser from Road to VR writer Dominic Eskofier, who had tipped me off as to their attendance before I’d even reached the show (thanks Dominic!)

One thing that didn’t make it into the interview was Tuncay’s plea for feedback and ideas that might enhance the Cyberith Virtualiser as it stands. So please feel free to air your thoughts here in our comments section or head over to Cyberith’s website here to do so.

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Based in the UK, Paul has been immersed in interactive entertainment for the best part of 27 years and has followed advances in gaming with a passionate fervour. His obsession with graphical fidelity over the years has had him branded a ‘graphics whore’ (which he views as the highest compliment) more than once and he holds a particular candle for the dream of the ultimate immersive gaming experience. Having followed and been disappointed by the original VR explosion of the 90s, he then founded to follow the new and exciting prospect of the rebirth of VR in products like the Oculus Rift. Paul joined forces with Ben to help build the new Road to VR in preparation for what he sees as VR’s coming of age over the next few years.
  • WormSlayer

    The harness from this combined with the walking dish thing from the Omni looks like it could be an interesting combination. May be too unstable though.

  • Andreas Aronsson

    Wewt, this device looks very polished, I remember his prototype video :D then I actually thought it was from some underground lab in Russia! For some reason… It looks a bit like the friction is high, but I guess you would just fall over if it is not, if you’re in there it might feel perfectly natural, I guess. I would love to hear a comparison from someone who has tried both the Cyberith Virtualiser and the Virtuix Omni, I guess no person like that exist yet :P

    And I see you use a Zoom H1, I have one like it :D with fluff on it looks like an ordinary mike! A tip is to use headphones to hear what you are recording :) for me it has been really helpful! Cheers!

  • Mageoftheyear

    Much more excited for this then I was for the Omni.

    I do think that some convex smooth groves stretching 2/5ths in towards the center would help reduce friction on the first landing part of a step and would provide a good sensory cue to let you know how close to the edge of the platform your feet are getting.
    Extending the groves all the way to the center would be too disruptive to the experience.

    I like the socks idea, but lol, are my feet going to get cold? Or will the friction help to compensate?

    A nice feature might be being able to lock the waist support at a certain height (just by standing a bit on your toes) so that when you relax you are resting on the belt supports – which would also reduce friction making it easier to run.
    This might make resuming crouching and jumping more complicated though.

    It may be cliche, but force feedback would be a nice feature to implement. Not beneath the tracking plate (might cause too much wear on the sensor components) but rather on the lower crossbars that connect the pylons to the plate, hydraulics closest to the plate and shock absorption between the hydraulics and the pylons.

    The last thing ( okay the second last thing :P ) I have to say is that I notice that during your walking your back is doing a lot of the work in moving you forward. I don’t know how to suggest to fix this except to point out having a chest plate in place linked to your orientation would relieve a lot of stress. Again, this complicates things in terms of crouching/jumping but I think friction is your biggest challenge.

    The last thing I have to say is: I love the Virtualiser!
    And I love that it’s not spelt with a “z” haha! ;)
    Great work Tuncay! Can’t wait to see how this develops.

    Thanks for the interview Paul. I really enjoy the casual feel that your interviews have, it has a great effect on loosening up the subject and they end up delivering details in a much more enthusiastic manner. Keep it up man.

  • Tuncay

    Hey guys!

    First of all, thank you so much! We are giving our best to evolve the Virtualizer before we are even thinking about selling ;)

    Dont worry about the temperature of your feet you can use shoes too with socks over them ^^ we will also think about special overshoes.

    Yes, we are going to add a locking system. Safety function, locking is high at the vertical axis for beginners to learn how to move, if you fall the system and the belt holds you… and a Sitting function, locking is lower at the vertical axis, so you can still crouch and sit at a very low level like in a old video of the first prototype. All this functions can be adjusted to your bodyheight.

    We also want to add a vibration unit into the floorplate to add feelings like, just imagine you are playing battlefield, a tank is passing you and you really feel the vibrations, or a greande explodes and you feel it but this is not important for now, we will add this feature later my friends.

    The walking on this device is REALLY very easy, we are searching for the right friction coefficient which is not too slippery and feels like natural walking. But i cant tell you this, you have to try it guys!!! Feel free to write me, if you want just visit us in Austria!!!

    Thank you all and thanks for the interview
    Tuncay Cakmak

  • drifter

    “We also want to add a vibration unit into the floorplate”
    You could also add a little resistance for those afraid of cold feet ;)