Wow, another year has gone by – and what a year it has been!
When MTBS was founded in 2007, it was formed for the purposes of making stereoscopic 3D (S-3D) gaming successful by building a community and proving there is demand for this technology. However, a byproduct of stereoscopic 3D were technologies that use it including Virtual Reality (VR).
What made VR unique compared to stereoscopic 3D as an industry is it wasn’t born from a corporate interest that had to create demand where it didn’t naturally exist before, or a community that had to do wide-scale education because people didn’t really understand the product or what it could do. Instead, it started as a grand yet simple vision; an idea people could easily relate to through the imaginings of Star Trek holodeck fantasy. No education or explanation was really needed, just the wish to step on that holodeck for real. Everybody knew it was fantasy, but it didn’t matter. It was enough to want it so innovators had a motivation to close the gap.
Whereas before MTBS had to continually struggle to find ways to move things forward, this year it was enough to sit back and watch our community do its thing. Oculus VR was just the beginning: Cloudhead Games, Virtuix Omni, Minecraft in VR, InfinitEye, and several more all got their early start in MTBS’ forums. All passionate to try something new and launch a new wave of products for VR.
MTBS also became VR inventors. MTBS’ free and open source Vireio Perception drivers wouldn’t have been possible without Denis Reischl, Josh Brown, Grant Bagwell, Chris Drain, John Hicks and Phil Larkson. Andres Hernandez too for letting the MTBS team continue where he left off! GameGrade3D was also re-imagined into GameGradeVR and was coded by Vadim Krivosheev – yes, more work is being done on this too!
So what does 2014 have in store?
Each year, we start with the Consumer Electronics Show. We are solidly booked and are meeting with just about everyone you can imagine. Keep an eye out for 3D videos and interviews from the show floor! We are now limited to after-hours meetings, so if you aren’t on the list yet, email firstname.lastname@example.org to see if a creative booking is possible.
Vireio Perception is also going to be a strong focus. It seems to be bringing out the best in the VR gaming community, users seem to like them, and it’s a lot of fun to shave off the differences between drivers and native VR support. There will always be a gap between the two, but the number of people who claim that fun VR is impossible from drivers are growing fewer and fewer. All help appreciated, so email vireio@mtbs3D.com if you think you can help make a difference (game donations, programming skills, etc.).
MTBS wants to continue helping start-ups get their feet in VR. We need a diverse industry, and we’d like to continue growing it by building the community and providing a means to try new things.
We also have other big ideas we want to try out in 2014.
So, let me finish by saying Happy New Year! 2013 was a great start for something new, but the best and most challenging times still lay ahead. Let’s see what we can accomplish in 2014!