Earlier this week Slightly Mad Studios released an HTC Vive update for its excellent simulation racing game Project Cars, and first impressions are impressive.
Thanks to green screens and editing tricks, videos have been uploaded in the past showing what sim racing in VR could look like. Those were just mock-ups, and not the real thing. Even then, those demonstrations were pretty awesome. But seeing Project Cars actually run in VR and look so close to those proof-of-concept videos makes future prospects look very promising.
The Project Cars HTC Vive experience has some other cool perks. There’s VR mouse support and Gaze control support. Gaze support is exactly what it sounds like: By looking at certain menu items for a brief amount of time, the game will select it. This means that players will have a far more seamless experience, and will not have to worry about finding a controller or mouse when using a steering wheel setup.
There’s still some room for improvement, though. For example, the player can move their head outside of the confines of the car, effectively phasing through the windows. Regardless, playing a sim racer in VR has its inherent advantages. Being able to look at an approaching corner while in a go-kart makes the experience all the more authentic.
Because a VR experience is much different than a traditional gaming experience, gamers will have to take certain steps to ensure things run smoothly. Slightly Mad Studios strongly recommends deleting configuration files found in the Documents folder. This will prevent any conflicts and will allow the HTC Vive update to fully integrate without any hiccups.
As of now, Valve and HTC seem to be giving Facebook and Oculus a run for their money.