My Daughters Adore the Rift
Even in the first few days of receiving my Rift CV1, I've put around 10 people through it, all with mixed, but great results. I'll break them down in a minute, as I only had time to get some quick impressions from everyone, but it was an awesome social experiment and something I'll be continuing in more detail going into the future.
My mom: She's a 53-year-old retired nurse, with limited experience on VR headsets. She uses her laptop for social media, Netflix, and so on - but wouldn't know what CPU or RAM is inside of her PC. Previously, I've put her inside of the DK1 and DK2 units on the simple rollercoaster experiences, where she screamed out loud for three minutes straight. For the first time in the Rift CV1, I let her try out Epic Games' VR experience 'Showdown'. In Showdown, there's a huge robot shooting bullets and rockets at you in super slow-mo, but she loved it - totally simple VR experience and just a taste of things to come.
I then dumped her in the deep end with Dreadhalls, which is a VR horror experience, something that I love to play for newbies in VR. Once again, she loved it - but couldn't get used to the controller - so it was a slower experience. But that's OK, my niece was next, and I knew she'd be sh*t scared of Dreadhalls. If you could see me before I did this, I was rubbing my hands together with glee.
My 17-year-old niece: This was the big one for me, my 17-year-old niece, Alisha. She loves horror movies and TV shows but is someone who will freak out during them. I don't know why she puts herself through the pain, but she does - so this was my opportunity to throw her into Dreadhalls and scare the crap out of her. The result? I submit to you, a video of her freaking the hell out:
My 18-year-old gaming nephew: Corey, my 18-year-old nephew, is a gaming addict. He's impressively good at CS: GO, and can handle himself in virtually any game without an issue. He's a huge technology enthusiast, and couldn't wait to get his hands-on the Oculus Rift CV1. His favorite game so far has been EVE: Valkyrie, which is somewhat expected from me. EVE: Valkyrie does kick some serious ass, and is probably the biggest 'whoa, holy crap' showcase for the Rift so far.
My two-year-old daughter: Evelyn is so beautiful, she just wanted to be involved with everything about the Rift as soon as it was in the house. She's a huge fan of sharks... and we don't know why, but there's a VR experience for the Rift called 'Ocean Rift', so I purchased it and let her play around in it. Her experience was great; she loved it - as you can see from the video below:
My five-year-old daughter: Hey there, Delilah - no, really - her name is Delilah. My five-year-old daughter is right up with VR headsets, having played around with the DK1 and DK2 headsets, and has been excited about playing in the new Rift because I've been talking about it so much. I let her play around with Ocean Rift, and while she loved it, I could see she wanted something more engaging. So, I decided to download 'Henry,' an immersive short VR experience from Oculus Story Studio. It feels like a Pixar creation, but in VR - she loved it.
It's about Henry the hedgehog, who has no friends because everyone he gets close to, he hurts with his spikes. In the short VR experience, Henry makes a wish on his birthday for new friends - and gets them. Without spoiling it, there are some helium balloons which fly around the room, and with Henry being so immersive, Delilah physically reached out in the real-world to grab the balloons. The smile that I had on my face was completely worth it. My five-year-old daughter was immersed in that VR experience so much that she began to blur the lines between reality and VR. I can't wait for her to play around with more games and experiences.
My wife: Natalie, you've avoided me so far - but not for long. After dinner tonight (I'm writing this on a Saturday night at 4:30 pm), I'm making her sit down and test out the Oculus Rift. For dodging me so far, your first experience will be Dreadhalls; I promise you'll love it.
Normally this is where I would type my 'Final Thoughts', but I'm not giving a final, definitive wrap up on the Rift CV1. This is going to be a very short wrap up because I'm only barely just barely scratching the surface on the Rift CV1 headset. It's an amazing piece of technology; that's for sure.
Oculus wins me over in so many ways, with the built-in headphones, the premium feel (from the box, all the way down to the beautiful fabric used on the Rift itself), the easy setup procedure, and the included Xbox One controller. The lack of the Touch controller is going to hurt Oculus when it comes to "do I buy the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift", which is a question I'll be asking myself throughout my articles on the Vive when it arrives, hopefully later this month.
For now, if you've been sitting on the fence about VR - don't. Get down from the fence and buy a VR headset - no matter what you purchase, you won't regret it.
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