Xbox Boss Hopes VR Isn't the Future

VRFocus - Microsoft is in a unique position in the virtual reality (VR) space at the moment. The company seemingly doesn’t have its own head-mounted display (HMD) in the works, but has announced a partnership with Oculus VR that will allow Xbox One and Windows PC owners to stream console videogames into a virtual theatre inside the Oculus Rift. A partnership with Valve and its SteamVR system is also in the works and, of course, the company is working on its HoloLens mixed reality (MR) HMD. Despite all of this, Xbox boss Phil Spencer hopes that VR isn’t the future of the videogame industry.

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Hoffmann1213d ago

I think it is almost unavoidable in the veery long run. I mean we all wanted the Holodecks from Star Trek next Generation to become something real, right?

TheLoCoRaven1213d ago

Some of us got a gf instead. ha!

uptownsoul1213d ago

Phil Spencer's whole rational in this article is based on this 1 statement: "I don’t think that [VR] should be the only way people play." -- But Phil, NOBODY ever suggested VR should be the only way people play video games...People will play games with their families like you spoke about, but they can also use VR as a get-away (in the same way family members might go off by themselves and read a book...that doesn't mean they never want to enjoy entertainment with their families again)

S2Killinit1213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

Its a bit alarming that he says this. I figured MS's relationship with the other headset developers meant they have a viable VR option, but now i dont understand what they mean when they say they can"stream xbox and windows to a VR headset", it sort of implies that there might be some restrictions? Otherwise why not just say that you can use such and such headset with xbox? I dont know.

Second, i feel that he is acting like VR has to be the only way we play, which is not the case. Is it going to revolutionize the gaming industry? Yes (based on my own experience with VR), but is it going to be the only way we play? Nope. Also some of what Spencer is worried about can be solved by the existence of the "second screen" solution on PSVR.

No you didnt lol jk (;

Hoffmann1213d ago

Only one? ;-)


mcstorm1213d ago

I don't see VR being the next big thing in gaming. The last thing most people want to do is get home and put something on their head to play games to then take it off to reply to texts, have a drink ect.

I do think VR will be good for some games but not gaming in terms of home gaming ect.

BlackTar1871213d ago

Sorry but i'm not jumping in on VR just yet but if you really think it's not the future then you need to reevaluate your stance. VR is inevitable it's just getting to that point first.

TheLoCoRaven1213d ago

@Hoffmann heh, thanks for being a good sport, but for real, who in their right mind would want to put up with more than one gf?

1213d ago
Death1213d ago

I agree with Phil's statement. I want VR to succeed but not become the standard as far as the way we play games and interact. Social interaction skills are suffering at the hands of technology. VR removes people even further away from each other than a simple cell today with texting. My mind was blown the first time I seen someone texting the person they were sitting next to instead of having a verbal conversation. Some of the most fun I've had gaming was with the people sitting next to me and playing. With online gaming this is something that rarely happens anymore. I don't want to imagine what it will be like sitting next to someone for any amount of time with their head strapped into a helmet removed from the rest of the world.

ZeroX98761213d ago

VR is awesome for what it is, but just like motion controlled game and touch screen games, classic gaming with a controller won't go away for a long long time, if ever.

New Experiences is what VR will bring. So much devs talked about how important it is to make your VR game strictly for VR and not just a port of an already gamepad-controlled game. (Among the sleep had an article on this not so long ago).

frelyler1213d ago

My girlfriend likes to watch me play Mad Max and GTA, I'm sorry your imaginary girlfriend is lame.

freshslicepizza1213d ago

phil has been playing games for a long time, he still loves watching other people play. vr is more of a internal experience.

AidenPearce1213d ago

......but not maturity, apparently.

Dir_en_grey1213d ago

VR is like when the right analog stick was introduced, when 2D jumped into 3D, having an option of extra means to control the camera is of course a good thing. How they utilize it is to each of his own.

But of course Xbox side don't want VR to be the future cuz they don't have one.

Army_of_Darkness1213d ago

@frelyler "My girlfriend likes to watch me play Mad Max and GTA, I'm sorry your imaginary girlfriend is lame."

You sir, have got yourself a damn cool imaginary girlfriend then ;-)

XBLSkull1213d ago

It won't be, it reminds me exactly of gaming in 3D, its fun for like an hour and its cool, but then you just want to go back to normal. I'll get an Oculus to try out, and probably a Hololens. Haven't been sold on PS-VR yet but if the right software comes out I may pick it up as well, and if it is a noticeably different experience then Oculus.

Certainly don't predict all my gaming will move to those devices though, just some fun gadgets to play with from time to time.

slappy5081212d ago

Imaginary gf's don't count

Taero1212d ago

...Do you not want to have sex with her inside a holodeck? Because that's very short sighted :p

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gapecanpie1213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

If its are more then $150 then I'm pretty sure its going to fail... at least for console systems..... VR for consoles will be like PS Move and Kinect and the dodo bird....

nitus101213d ago

Well that's a very childish attitude. Yes, price is important however it also depends on what you are getting for the price.

A simple example.

How much would you pay for a 55" or larger HDTV or UHDTV for that matter? I can't see you getting one of those for $150.00.

With a VR headset you could have a 100" or more HDTV for your own personal use. In fact everywhere you look you would see what is projected to your eyes and that is much larger than the largest TV ever built to date.

Of course you really do want to try the headset before you buy, because for a variety of reasons you may not be suitable physically and psychologically for wearing and using such a device.

BG115791213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

It's not because he's someone important, that he can't be wrong. There are several cases in the past :

"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." Thomas Watson, president of IBM, 1943
"Television won't be able to hold on to any market it captures after the first six months. People will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night." Darryl Zanuck, executive at 20th Century Fox, 1946
"There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." Ken Olsen, founder of Digital Equipment Corporation, 1977
"Almost all of the many predictions now being made about 1996 hinge on the Internet's continuing exponential growth. But I predict the Internet will soon go spectacularly supernova and in 1996 catastrophically collapse." Robert Metcalfe, founder of 3Com, 1995
"Apple is already dead." Nathan Myhrvold, former Microsoft CTO, 1997
"Two years from now, spam will be solved." Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, 2004

So don't think that much about what Spencer said. Just wait for the technology to come out and prove itself or not...

MeliMel1213d ago

Im excited to see what VR brings but I dont want it to be the only form of play.

nitus101213d ago

Just imagine you have a VR headset on with 7.1 equivalent headphones.

Example: You are sailing down a river, look left you can see the left bank and you can see mangroves with appropriate wildlife. Look right and you see the mangroves and also appropriate wildlife. Look down and you can see your feet and the bottom of the boat.

Now look up and what is that black dot that appears to be heading rapidly towards you?

The above example could be from a travel documentary or it could also be a game and that black dot could be:

1) A flock of geese - Oh pretty!

2) An attack helicopter - Oh S&.t!

3) A dragon - Oh double S&.t!

MeliMel1212d ago

Yeah the possibilities are awesome. I still like my controller tho..

G20WLY1212d ago

^Then use your controller as well. :)

Joey_Leone1213d ago

I hope not too, same goes for teh cloudz, streaming and digital only.

_-EDMIX-_1213d ago

I actually agree. The more the technology improves, we don't really know what display type we'll have in gaming. To disagree is to say the future will merely have the same TV displays and I'm not to sure its going to be that way.

Lets say (shot in the dark) we have something crazy like brain implants lol. If it takes off...who is still going to be pushing an older display type?

I agree that in the long run, some form of VR is very, very likely inevitable.

Hold_It1213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

You have a good point Hoffmann. It kinda sucks that Sony and others are focused on VR rather than trying to get console to have constant 60fps 1080p with no texture pop ins, clipping, glitches etc. We haven't perfected gaming so why enter another plane? I can only imagine people getting sick from playing an unoptimized game with VR when the FPS goes from 60 to 10-25 variable.

I wonder how long it will be until we get games that look as good as Diablo 3's cutscenes, and by that I mean it's not the same style of gameplay like Uncharted or Until Dawn, The Last Of Us, Heavy Rain, Beyond Two Souls, etc. I would think after you can achieve that level with lifelike A.I and a constant 60fps with no pop in, clipping issues or anything else, VR should become the focus.

Diablo 3 Act 3 Cinematic (Spoilers if you haven't played D3 or plan on playing it).

nitus101213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

Sony focuses on lots of different projects and subsequent research. The PlayStation division is just one which has it's own budget and goals. I would also assume the division that is researching VR is part of the TV group and working with the PlayStation group.

The PS4 and even the XB1 have been built and are selling quite well, however gaming PC's which are in the minority and much more expensive will always have the better performance.

It is nice you have higher frame rates however you also have to take into account the display media and if it can support high speed motion properly.

As an example it is rather useless purchasing a high performance PC if you have a cheap or small monitor.

I am more concerned with constant frame rates be it 30fps for most games or 60fps for shooters and fast action games. With the current hardware specs of the PS4 and XB1 compromises do have to made however locked frame rates are more important than variable frame rates or that really annoying bug called stuttering. I will leave that to you to look that up.

fr0sty1213d ago

When your console has a memory bottleneck that makes VR extremely difficult, of course you hope it doesn't catch on.

andibandit1212d ago (Edited 1212d ago )

Good job reading beyond the headline.

Haru1212d ago

Of course he would say that, he's afraid that VR might take off and they will be left behind since Microsoft has no VR planed for xbonx while Sony is launching Playstation VR next year

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Revolt131213d ago

Going to have to agree.
Doesnt seem too appealing to me.

Mystogan1213d ago

Well some games might work well others will work better without it. The problem will always be feedback. Even if they add a Kinect like sensor into the mix. When you reach out to touch a wall you're not going to feel that there's a wall there your hand will just "go through it". It breaks the immersion. But it's still awesome to be sitting there and a T-rex comes all up in yo face and starts roaring. That will never get old I think VR will thrive off of moments like that.

TheCommentator1213d ago

You'd need advanced haptics for that. Some prosthetics designers are recreating the sensation of touch as we speak. Maybe in 20-30 years we'll see that for gaming too.

Rookie_Monster1213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

I felt about the same as you Revolt13, VR, like motion is not something I see myself using for gaming. Nice novelty item, sure, but I don't even see it being up there with motion control as far as popularity tbh. Me, a TV and a controller is gaming and will always be. If you need to use a motion controller with it or can't look at the buttons on my controller while playing a game, it is not what I and many will enjoy.

kraenk121213d ago

Shows you haven't tried it yet.

DragonDDark1213d ago

Ikr? I hate when people judge things without trying them themselves. :/

Davi1231213d ago

It's so weird hear XBots saying: «VR doesn't appeal to me», when in the last gen every XBots scream about: «MS will buy Oculus Rift and will be amazing play Halo with it».

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ShowanW1213d ago

Phil didn't say it entirely that way...

This title is very misleading title...

Paytaa1213d ago

Well a lot of people don't read past the title so it causes unnecessary controversy.

nitus101213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

While I do agree with you I am not quite sure what he was trying to say.The impression I got was he was he was trying to have it both ways by praising VR and downplaying it as far as social interaction.

Sort of wishy washy.

Kavorklestein1213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

Good point. He didn't say he HOPES IT'S NOT THE FUTURE... he said he hopes it's not the ONLY future for GAMING.

And then he also clarifies that he means he hopes it isn't some end all be all end to traditional gaming. He wants all the good options whether traditional or VR etc to be a part of the future of gaming.

This headline tries way too hard to make Phil seem stupid, when he's actually giving plenty of background for how he feels.

Some people will crop anything to fit their fancy.
Like guys who photoshop bigger muscles. Or girls who photoshop bigger boobs on their selfies.

If people are gonna find out the truth either way, why try so hard to strech it?

I am personally excited for vr, but I don't think it will be replacing traditional gaming for at least another 5 years, when tech develops further, and prices for said tech are affordable.

Anywhoo, happy gaming to all, the future is always bright if you are a gamer. (:

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Toiletsteak1213d ago

I can't see VR being that big, PS VR is going to cost a lot so not everyone will be able to afford it, i see it as a gimmick and will most likely fade within a year.

SteamPowered1213d ago

Microsoft put all their eggs in the Kinect basket, then never supported it. Now they are scrambling with AR, but are woefully behind a launch date. So now MS is hoping VR fails? This Makes them sound like a Tit.

Multiplatguy1213d ago

Who said they are hoping VR fails? All he said was he hopes VR isn't the future of gaming, as in the only way to play in the future. Nothing wrong with that.

Did you even read the article? Cause this comment makes you look like a tit..

christocolus1213d ago

He obviously didn't read it. Smh

tinynuggins1213d ago (Edited 1213d ago )

Hololense has been in development for over 5 1/2 years and is a year or two away from launch. Hardly a scramble. And they never said that they hope it fails, just that it's not the only way people play. Sounds like you hear whatever you want to hear though. :(

kraenk121213d ago

HoloLens won't even be used on XBox one.

ShowanW1213d ago

this comment lets me know that you didnt read the interview Gamespot did on Phil.

And who says HoloLens in Woefully behind, and why do they have to come out when others do?

Do you get to determine the time frame when an item releases?

Morgue1213d ago

I'm holding out for the HD-DVD/Kinect/VR combo package. /S

fishy11213d ago

NO, it makes you sound like a Tit, reading someones opinion as fact Lol The author of this artilce takes words and twists them to fool people like you into thinking its fact, and not the opinion of a moron. Anyone can take part of a persons statement and twist it to sound however you like. N4G is full of these articles, if you are going to read everything as fact. You will be feeding on that Tit forever...... 90% of these articles are opinion, or an attempt to predict the future.

Mystogan1213d ago

"scrambling with AR"? Do you have any idea how long they've been working on AR? It's not like they've made a last minute decision to support it because Sony has Morpheus.

MeliMel1213d ago

Yeah like yourself! Lol

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