As virtual reality (VR) becomes even more prominent, so too does the need for performance metrics. Crytek announced a partnership with Basemark for VR benchmarking. Every proper gamer knows the importance. It’s the reason we drop more money than we should on GPUs and CPUs, and why we have sites like Game Debate and System Requirements Lab bookmarked. With increased VR use, ranging from compatibility with newer games to updates on older titles like “Half-Life 2” and even “Quake,” it was only a matter of time until VR benchmarks arose.
It’s big news, because both companies and gamers will be able to determine system requirements for playing VR games, demos, and videos. Chances are unless you’ve got a pretty powerful rig, the answer will be “not well.” However, this new partnership means we’ll be able to determine optimal settings to at least run the content. As LowSpecGamer proved, just because your setup can’t run “The Witcher 3” in 4k, you just might be able to play it anyway.
In a bold statement, Epic Games chief executive Tim Sweeney claimed that augmented reality will replace traditional screens. Epic has proven a dedication to virtual reality with VR support in their Unreal development engine. Similarly, Crytek and Unity also have virtual reality support, allowing for developers to easily include VR support in their games. Plus, these engines’ cross-platform support ensures that augmented reality can easily reach across a breadth of devices, from PCs to consoles and phones. I’m not sure I’ll be ditching my TV or computer monitor any time soon, but I’ve also got a turntable and VCR hooked up in my media center, so I might not be the best example.
Sweeney’s argument is compelling. VR headsets offer immersive environments, and in tiny gadgets. Remember when monolithic projection televisions yielded to thin flat screens like LCDs, plasmas, and LEDs? Well, augmented reality and virtual reality are the next logical steps. What’s better than a 40 inch TV set? A 40 foot screen, minus the screen. Replace the monitor with a headset or pair of glasses. However, the future of AR and VR, and their potential to solidify their rank in the technology hierarchy is contingent on hardware and software advancements. Luckily, companies like Crytek and Epic are committed to furthering VR and AR, from content creation to hardware optimization.
Are augmented and virtual reality poised to replace our current technology, or merely supplements?