CCP Games have rolled out a small ‘2017_R3.1’ update this week, enabling work-in-progress support for Oculus Touch. As described on the EVE: Valkyrie website, this attempts to map the gamepad controls to the buttons, triggers and sticks of the Touch controllers, rather than using motion.
As a bundled launch game for the Oculus Rift (which originally shipped with an Xbox One gamepad and no motion controllers), EVE: Valkyrie was specifically designed as a seated VR experience with gamepad controls, but requests for Touch support have likely increased since Oculus created a new cheaper Rift and Touch package, which no longer includes an Xbox One gamepad. Incidentally, Best Buy recently began offering a free copy of EVE: Valkyrie with the Rift and Touch bundle, (the game is no longer free with the Rift) which didn’t really make sense without the game’s new Touch support.
Unfortunately, mapping gamepad controls to Touch controllers isn’t that straightforward, as CCP Games are reluctant to enable any form of motion input, and there are fewer mechanical buttons compared to a traditional controller. As they explain in the patch notes, “motion controls simply don’t give you the precision you need in Valkyrie”, making the game feel ‘less responsive’. Considering the game already supports HOTAS controllers, it’s surprising that motion inputs replicating a throttle and stick aren’t available as an option, but perhaps it simply doesn’t translate well in this case.
As a result, they’ve used up all of the mechanical inputs, and the ‘cancel missile lock’ function, normally reserved for clicking the right stick on a gamepad, is not currently available. The team say they are “working with Oculus to fix this in a future update.”
CCP Games’ flagship VR title continues to enjoy strong support well over a year after its original launch, having recently received a major update in last month’s ‘2017_R3’ patch that added a graphics upgrade, and AI, balance and stability improvements. Their motion controller-focused title Sparc launches first on PSVR at the end of August.
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