After showcasing a prototype at last year’s Gamescom, Austrian technology startup Cybershoes will return this year with a new ready-to-ship product that allows gamers to jump in virtual reality (VR).
This is the final redesign of Cybershoes, which further increases its users’ freedom of movement when inside virtual environments by adding jumping to the accessories’ walking and turning capabilities.
The product is comprised of the Cybershoes accessories, which slide over the user’s shoes, a 360-degree swivel chair and a matching carpet, with packages starting at €449.
The accessory is compatible with most common VR headsets, such as HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, and can be used with any VR game that allows players to move freely with a controller.
Cybershoes: Addressing virtual reality’s movement issue
While VR gaming can transport players into breathtaking environments, locomotion within them often leaves a lot to be desired. In a bid to combat motion sickness, many games opt for point-and-click teleportation mechanics to move around.
“VR is an endless space, but until recently, users weren’t able to walk naturally in it,” Michael Bieglmayer, CEO of Cybershoes, explained. “Joystick movements make people dizzy and teleportation ruins the whole immersion.”
While the wires that connect the headset to the computer system, as well as a lack of space in the real world, still prohibits free movement within a virtual environment, Cybershoes attempts to address VR’s locomotion restraints.
The user sits in the chair, which ensures they don’t stray outside of the play area, while enabling longer play sessions by reducing fatigue. The user can walk forwards by swinging their feet back and forth, and jump by lifting their feet off of the ground.
Cybereason initially launched a Kickstarter campaign last year to fund the creation of its product, which reached its funding goal of €30,000 in two hours. More than €214,000 was pledged towards the product in total.
“Our solution is easy and practical for home use,” Bieglmayer said. “I can attest that it offers an immersion that even VR veterans will find hard to escape.”