New movement updates to Waltz Of The Wizard: Extended Edition aim to make traversing large spaces in VR more comfortable — and they will even work with Oculus Quest’s controller-free hand tracking.
The system is called “Telepath” and development studio Aldin Dynamics detailed the new options available in the PC version of the game now. There’s a blog post and videos explaining the features alongside a glimpse showing the “come hither”-esque gesture for Quest hand tracking that’ll make it possible to use the new system without any physical controllers.
Check it out:
I wrote to Aldin CEO Hrafn Thorisson over direct message and he told me the gesture shouldn’t interfere with a pinch gesture Facebook is reserving on the Quest to access the menu system from a VR app when you aren’t using controllers.
The videos explain the range of options available with the “telepath” system. It is focused around a more dynamic arc you can place out into the virtual world and then move along the path it generates. There’s a “step” option that quickly moves you to points along the path while a “smooth” option looks more like walking in real life at a constant rate of speed. If you reach for nearby objects or dodge something coming toward your head with physical movement it’ll slow down, but you can also swing your arms to increase the movement speed. You can also redraw the path at any time. Thorisson warns the new system may take getting used to for experienced VR users but more than 90 percent of users stick with the system.
The studio provides a detailed look at the new system here:
According to Aldin Dynamics, the new “Telepath features are being rolled out in preparation of our upcoming expansions of Waltz of the Wizard: Extended Edition, both the big expansions to the world and gameplay, as well as hand-tracking that will soon become available on Oculus Quest.”
That’s the second tease this week for hand tracking features coming soon to Oculus Quest games. The Curious Tale Of The Stolen Pets showed that it’ll be possible to push a cute little doggy on a swing using the new input system. Facebook first released the Software Development Kit for hand tracking on Quest late last year and made it available to consumers as an experimental option. They’ve been steadily updating the Quest system software seemingly in preparation to offer the new input system more broadly.
May 21, 2020 will mark the one year anniversary of Oculus Quest going on sale and we wouldn’t be surprised to see Facebook start accepting store submissions for hand tracking soon. Facebook can’t make the $400 headset fast enough to meet demand and a report this week from Bloomberg confirmed our expectations for a future version of the standalone headset.
You can grab Waltz of the Wizard: Extended Edition on Steam now with the latest “Telepath” feature. The game is available on Quest too but still has an older version of the feature at the time of this writing and doesn’t feature hand tracking yet.