Virtual reality video gaming has been a dream of the industry for decades. And, after several false starts such as Nintendo’s Virtual Boy and the SEGA VR, in 2016 it’s finally happening, and in a big way.
Companies like Facebook and Sony are now fully invested in the potential of virtual reality, and they’re making big promises. According to the makers of the biggest consumer VR devices, these headsets will offer a new users a new type of escape, connect us to each other in novel ways, and revolutionize video games.
But now that the dream of consumer-grade VR is a reality, game makers are finding that reality is complicated. With this acceleration into a new world of interactive entertainment comes risks: Just what is virtual reality going to do to its players? How will our bodies respond to these deeply immersive experiences?
In our new film, “Stepping into the Screen: The Boundaries of the VR Frontier,” we put aside the promises and look at the reality. We speak to developers and medical professionals about the incredible strengths and emerging challenges of VR. We explore VR’s therapeutic potential, and lay out the medical risks that game designers must take into account when building these breathtaking virtual worlds.
The future is uncertain for VR: Will it just be another fad, like the light guns and balance boards of the past? Or will developers learn to adapt to the new limits of this new technology, and truly revolutionize gaming forever?
Host Tashi Hanlon
Producer Nonuk Walter
Producer Dylan Coburn
Associate Producer Mike Diver
Editor Stacy Kim
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