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Virtual reality racer 'iRacing' updates with HTC Vive support

Motorsports sim and virtual reality showcase iRacing will add support for the HTC Vive VR headset in a September update, software engineer Shawn Nash revealed during an interview with Road to VR this week.

Today’s HTC Vive announcement follows up on iRacing‘s introduction of Oculus Rift compatibility in June, and could lead to native support for other virtual reality headsets in the future.

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Initially released in 2008, iRacing is an online racing league and simulator that offers realistically modeled tracks based on real-world race courses. The game saw numerous expansions and additions in the years following its debut, and recent updates have added support for racing wheels, pedals, and other peripherals in a bid to further enhance realism.

In 2013, iRacing shifted its development focus to consumer VR technology, and later rolled out support for the Oculus Rift VR headset. While many Oculus Rift games have been successfully hacked to add support for VR headsets from rival manufacturers, iRacing remained a notable standout, as its bundled EasyAntiCheat software prevented hackers from using the free Revive injector tool to introduce multiplatform VR.

Seeing interest from the booming HTC Vive market, iRacing software engineer and VR developer Shawn Nash set out to add compatibility for the popular headset earlier this year, and full support will arrive in an update slated to deploy next month.

“Interestingly, because OpenVR is also compatible with the Rift, one can set the simulator’s options to use the Rift via either the Oculus SDK or the OpenVR SDK,” Nash told Road to VR this week, addressing the possibility of extended headset compatibility in the future.

Nash also answered lingering questions regarding the lack of anti-aliasing in iRacing‘s VR mode, assuring fans that numerous fixes and graphical tweaks are in the works, though they may not be finished in time for the next patch. “We’re hoping to add some AA support for both the Vive and Rift but it’s not in yet, so not for sure,” Nash stated.

iRacing will add HTC Vive support in a patch set for release on September 6.