Anyone Else Having a Problem with the Term "VR?"


The Vive is now available for sale, and Steam is shouting "VR is here!" However, I'm not impressed. From what I've seen from the Vive and it's competitors is a monitor with sensors that you strap to your head. (Also, the included motion controllers, etc) We've had this tech since before the Wii, and people are still excited for this monitor that's a few inches from your face. But that's not the point of this thread.

It's the term "Virtual Reality" which has been overused. Suddenly, just because the screen is attached to your head, it's like the Matrix. Does the Wii become virtual reality if I strap my TV to my face? This pseudo-VR is immersive. But true Virtual Reality it is not.

So far, the closest one can get to real VR is Pen and Paper RPGs, just minus the graphics.


I agree on technicalities. It is not 'virtual reality' as far as I understand the term, and if I remember correctly, devices such as this have existed back in the early 90's? They were kids toys, like a racing game where you wore the screen on your face. Granted, nowhere near as advanced but the principal is the same.

tl;dr I agree it's not VR.

El Maco

Personally I don't have any problem with the term "VR". A quote from Engadget's Vive review:

"When everything is working well, the Vive is the most convincing argument yet that virtual reality isn't just hype and wishful thinking. It manages to convincingly place you in the centers of virtual worlds..."

The Rift and Vive are far more than just TVs strapped to your face... We have definitely not had this technology before.

Convincing virtual reality is extremely demanding for the computing hardware. Even the most high end PC available today struggles with the requirements. A good VR kit also needs very high pixel density display, something that hasn't been around until very lately. It also needs really good optics to throw the picture away from your face. Real-time requirements for the sensors are also a challenge etc.


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