Mike Capps believes VR still has a ways to go before mass acceptance.
Virtual reality may still be in the nascent stages of commercial deployment but devices like HTC Vive, Sony’s Project Morpheus and Oculus Rift prove that serious investment in the technology is here to stay. That being said, despite finding much to like about it, former Epic Games president Mike Capps believes it has a long way to go before achieving full acceptance among consumers.
In conversation with Games Industry International, Capps talked about pricing and how even 3D glasses were looked at as a nuisance. “There’s so little tolerance at the consumer level for that kind of an investment. And I think one of the things I’m most curious about – you look at 3D TV as a super easy-to-use technology that is really unfettered. Just a pair of polarized glasses and people didn’t use it because it wasn’t worth the trouble.
“The content difference was there. 3D Avatar looks way better than non-3D Avatar…If slipping on a pair of flicker glasses is too much trouble – then the idea of, ‘OK, I’m going to put on my head mount rig and fire up my liquid-cooled PC in order to make it happen’ [isn’t likely to take off]. I hope it happens but I think it’s going to be a while before my mom does that.”
Content will also be a big problem. How does one get developers to sign up for content on a platform like Oculus Rift? Capps talked about the previous year when Oculus visited developers “and saying, ‘You should develop a game for our platform,’ they were also saying, ‘But we don’t know when it’s coming out and we don’t know how many people are going to buy it.’ And that’s a really hard story as a developer.” Obviously it would be difficult to sell one’s technology at that point.
Check out the full interview for more, including Capps’s thoughts on Microsoft HoloLens.