Back at E3, a company called Oculus began quietlydisplaying (opens in new tab)their new head-mounted virtual reality display called Rift. Early buzz was very positive, and journalists were getting quite interested in the possibility of VR returning as a sustainable trend in gaming. Today, they have revealed Rift to the world in the form of a Kickstarter campaign.
Don’t get excited though, because this isn’t your typical Kickstarter. To begin with, there’s no real pre-order option for the final console yet. The best you can do is order a development kit which will run an installed copy of Doom 3 (id Software is one of the most vocal supporters of the project.) Traditionally, development kits do not run final retail games, however it’s unclear whether that’s also the case with Rift.
Mostly this seems like a Kickstarter to gather interest from developers, as well as donations from fans who want to help this become a part of gaming’s future. It’s a compelling idea, we’re just not sure it’s worth plopping down $15 for a poster of a pair of goggles.
The Kickstarter has been up for about a day and has already solicited just under $500,000 from 1900 backers as of this writing. That’s double their original goal of $250,000. It’s fairly clear that they were studying the success of Ouya (the console that took the gaming industry by storm (opens in new tab) a few weeks back) as they also integrated dialogue in the video about how modders will love playing with the system – which was a selling point of the original Ouya video – and made sure to highlight the epic game-changing appeal of the new device.
We’ll be sure to keep an eye on this project, as the giant list of games industry figures supporting the project (shown in the video) is simply too big to ignore.