half life 2 virtual realityHere’s a brief video showing the work of Nathan Andrews who is modding Half Life 2 for virtual reality and the Oculus Rift. In almost all modern first-person shooters, where you look and where you aim are one in the same. Andrews has separated the two which enables the ability to aim your gun one way while looking another. Combined with a gun-prop and VR headset, this makes for an immersive and natural playing experience.

Andrews is apparently not keen to wait for Valve to talk about modifying Team Fortress 2 for virtual reality at GDC next month, so he’s started in on his own modding project for Half Life 2 and the Oculus Rift.

Using two Hillcrest trackers, a modified Sony HMZ-T1, and the Top Shot Elite gun-controller, Andrews hacked together a mod to decouple aiming and looking. He says that it also works with episodes 1 and 2 (expansions for the game), as well as other mods and maps.

Andrews stresses that the mod is still early work, but you can find a link to download it and track it’s progress over at his thread on the MTBS3D forums.

It’s amazing to see, even without playing yourself, how natural the player’s movements in the game look compared to traditional aiming schemes. If we’re lucky, Valve will soon be releasing an official implementation for the Oculus Rift / virtual reality for Team Fortress 2, and hopefully that’ll extend to the Half Life series as well.

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  • Very cool!

  • I saw this in the forum, and again, this looks friggin awesome. If it will be easy enough to set up the weapon tracking with the Rift I can see this as being the best experience for the device for some time. Just using the rift seems super awesome, using it with decoupled weapon aiming will be 10 or 20 times as awesome! :D Very nice to see someone working on this.

  • David Mulder

    These developments might actually bring along a problem nobody was expecting… namely that by making games more realistic it will become harder and harder to play them. Aiming in such a setup as the one described above without some form of extra ‘help’ from the system would be incredibly hard. And I don’t think it’s without reason that the guy in the video seems to be using heat seeking missiles or whatever they are called… hmm, we shall see :D

  • PoopsauceMcGeezax

    I can’t wait for this. Half LIfe is a good place to start off on this game because Valve is a responsible company that won’t leave a bad mark on it. However, I think that nobody is really aware of this, or cares about virtual reality. I think that VR will get a big boost up if this game is successful at it, but it could also hurt VR if nobody responds. We need more awareness for this.