Games festival director spends 48 hours in VR, doesn't puke
"I had no physical problems, no burning eyes, killing headaches or nausea. The path to the future is now prepared."
- A Maze Festival founder Thorsten Wiedemann reflects on his 48-hour VR sojourn.
Earlier this month German game industry figure Thorsten Wiedemann donned a pair of pink pajamas and an HTC Vive headset to spend 48 hours sequestered in virtual reality. Reports suggest he did not puke.
This is important because as the game industry gears up for the commercial launch of multiple VR headsets this year, at least one important question haunts many developers minds: can people comfortably spend long periods of time playing VR games without getting sick?
Wiedemann's performance, titled "Disconnected," seems to suggest they can. For 48 hours between January 8th-10th he played VR games and demos behind glass at the Game Science Center in Berlin with the help of VR game designer Sara Lisa Vogl, who helped pick out a variety of experiences for Wiedemann.
"The people following the event contacted me through the chat and wanted him to play their games,” Vogl told Vice. “They sent demos they or their friends had made to my Facebook or email and I downloaded them and played them on the Vive. When I planned Thorsten’s daily routines, I contacted a lot of developers but I was overwhelmed by how many more got in touch during the event. This widened up the range of content a lot."
The performance was livestreamed, and some of the footage (which you can see here via the Game Science Center Berlin's YouTube channel) will be used in a documentary about Wiedemann's two-day VR trip.
For more details on his experience -- including Wiedemann's effort to "awaken inside a virtual reality" by sleeping with the Vive on, and the special diet he adopted in an effort to perform publicly for 48 hours while reducing his need to use the restroom -- check out the full Vice report.