The Oculus Rift is arriving at people’s doors today, and Oculus kept a couple of surprises back for launch day. One of these, Oculus Dreamdeck, is a bundling of a series of ‘vignettes’ used originally to demo a standing VR experience with the Crescent Bay Rift prototype.
The Crescent Bay Oculus Rift prototype was the first time that Oculus showed what would in essence become the consumer Oculus Rift. It had 360 constellation tracking, integrated headphones and dual panel displays. Using this leap in technical specifications, Oculus treated many people to their first taste of VR presence, a term used to describe psychological immersion, with their real time demo series – presented to the user in a standing position.
Ben Lang went hands on with the demo series back at the first Oculus Connect event in 2014:
One of the stand-out demos put me in front of an alien on some sort of Moon-like world. The alien was looking at me and speaking in an unfamiliar tongue. When I moved my head, its gaze followed me. Its big and detailed eyes, combined with reaction to me as I moved, imbued it with a sense of living that was really cool. Spaceships flew over head and drew my gaze behind me, leading me to look at some incredibly detailed scenery.
The demos, a series of short experiences that spanned a wild series of settings and themes, were powered by Epic Games’ Unreal Engine and were some of the most impressive yet seen.
Now, Oculus has chosen to re-package these vignettes as Oculus Dreamdeck – which is made available to you once you’ve logged into the newly launched Oculus Home interface for the Oculus Rift. Despite being little long in the tooth by VR standards, they still represent one of the best possible ways to show people the power of VR for the first time, now on final hardware they can actually buy.
It’s smart move by Oculus, on that may earn dividends via word of mouth for those able to try it out, mainly because it gives people a glimpse at what’s possible with VR.