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News  15, May 2014

Here is China’s response to the Oculus Rift & Project Morpheus

It’s called the ANTVR VR kit and it features two IMUs and a headset that delivers an experience similar to watching films in IMAX theatres

Virtual Reality technology is a possible trend that’s building up to a different game experience if Sony’s effort and Oculus’ continued progress are of any indication. Tech-savvy hobbyists can now add in Beijing-based company ANTVR to the list of VR tech creators.

The Chinese startup announced the ANTVR kit, which is billed as the first all-in-one universal VR kit. It comes with the headset, a video driver box, a remote controller and a lithium battery pack. The headset is equipped with full HD display; while wearing it, users will see the screen at a 4:3 ratio and will be given a 100 degrees diagonal field of view. In theory, that’s as close as you can get to having an IMAX theatre experience shoved into your noggin.

The ANTVR kit also has a built-in positional tracking technology, two 9-axis Inertial Measuring Units (on the headset and on the controller) and maximum video compatibility with existing devices like the PC and major consoles. Speaking of controller, it can transform to either a standard gamepad, a sword, a gun, or even a joystick.

Also Read: Oculus VR sells 85,000 virtual reality dev kit headsets

The ANTVR dev team is also making the device accessible for budding tech and game developers wishing to make games compatible with the device. Since its U2B module is open source, developers can make the control command adaptable to any device; the site even suggests that you can use it to control UAVs and robots from afar.

Sounds intriguing? Not put off by the superimposed effects at the start of the video above? Right now there’s a Kickstarter page for the ANTVR: it is currently at US$56,752 with a goal of  US$200,000. The page has 39 days left before it closes funding.

The prospects of a VR kit with two IMUs for more control and head-tilting options in games are interesting, and the device has positive testimonies from Unity CEO David Helgason and Virtuix Founder Jan Goetgeluk. Still, it won’t be an easy battle against an established VR brand like Oculus and recent VR adopter Sony Computer Entertainment.

Jonathan Toyad

Jonathan Toyad

If you want an elaborate answer on who would win in a fight between Ultraman and Godzilla, Jonathan Toyad is your man. A six-year veteran in the game journalism industry, he did words and videos for outlets such as GameSpot, GameAxis, IGN and Stuff.TV. Fears coyotes and scorched earths.

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