Oculus Rift coupled with multiple motion capture suits to bring us one step closer to a holodeck

Oculus Rift Xsens

Since Oculus began shipping the dev kits of their virtual reality headset folk have been coming up with increasingly excellent implementations of the technology. The latest, from Xsens, shows how coupling the Rift with an Xsens full body motion capture suit allows you to fully immerse yourself in a virtual environment. Not just you, either, but a friend, too.

Walking around a room in real life sees your movements replicated in the game and you can see what your friend is doing as they move around, too.

In this instance, Xsens have created a replica in Unity of a building they had access to. This allowed them to track the movement of their actors as they walked through the physical space and translate those same movements into the virtual environment.

What’s particularly cool about this setup is the multiplayer element. Other games already support multiple players wearing Rifts, that’s not new, but it’s currently an eerie experience. When you see another player walking about and you’re aware that in reality they’re sat down in the chair next to you using an Xbox controller it can become a bit muddling. This setup is far more immersive and has the bonus of not using canned animations but real body motion.

Imagine some of the implementations of this setup: you create a 3d model of yourself and skin the motion capture skeleton with that so it looks like you. Then load up a game with a friend halfway round the world and you’ll be able to see each other, interact with one another, almost like you were in the same room.

Or, better yet, imagine a Laser Quest game where all the players had Oculus Rifts. The company could recreate their assault course in Unity, dress it up to look like a futuristic warzone, and have players climb about the environment both in real life and the game. Heck, if you built the same course in different locations, you could have teams compete who weren’t even in the same city.

This is an extremely cool use of the Oculus.