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Oculus Rift needs games built specifically for VR not just ports, says Oculus vice president

Joe Donnelly September 9, 2013 - 11:02 am

The Oculus Rift VR headset looks set to leave a significant mark on the next generation of gaming. But Nate Mitchell, vice president of product at Oculus, has spoken of how, for the medium to be most successful, we need to see “developers targeting virtual reality.”

Half-Life 2 VR shows the Oculus Rift in action

As we hurtle towards the next generation of gaming, much of our focus lies with PS4 and Xbox One. But the Oculus Rift, arguably the most convincing virtual reality peripheral ever, will no doubt generate its fair share of excitement once it hits the commercial market.

In an interview with GeekGamer TV at PAX, Nate Mitchell, Oculus’ vice president of product, spoke of how ports of games to VR are one thing, but for the hardware to really prove its potential, game developers need to focus on building VR-specific titles.

“One of the biggest challenges right now is actually just working with developers to get great content on the platform,” says Mitchell when asked of the obstacles in developing the device. “It’s sort of a cop out answer because it’s not something we’re battling with VR, but for VR to really be great, we need developers to make made for VR games.

“What we’re seeing right now – and actually what we’re showing at [PAX] – is Hawken and iRacing which are two incredible ports to VR, but they’re just that, they’re ports, and what we need to see is developers targeting virtual reality, addressing its strengths and weaknesses to bring the best possible experiences.

“An example we give all the time is; the best games on iOS aren’t necessarily the ports of console games with virtual joysticks and that sort of thing, it’s just games that take the device and leverage of all its strengths and its weaknesses like Words With Friends or Angry Birds – those are fun games because they’re designed for the hardware and the interface. We need that in VR.”

Mitchell went on to give Eve: Valkerie as a great example of a VR-specific game, developed by a AAA studio – CCP. “It’s just a remarkable showcase of what the tech can do.”

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