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CloudGate Studio shows how to achieve 'full body awareness' in VR

January 20, 2017 | By Chris Kerr

January 20, 2017 | By Chris Kerr
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More: VR, Production, Video

Virtual reality outfit CloudGate Studio, founded in June last year by The Brookhaven Experiment devs Jeremy Chapman and Steve Bowler, has being experimenting with full body awareness in VR, and the results are impressive. 

A video uploaded to YouTube shows how Bowler transported his entire body -- not just his hands and head, as is commonplace in most VR experiences -- into a virtual playspace. 

The CloudGate co-founder managed that using four Vive controllers -- two in his hands, two others strapped to his feet -- and two headsets. That allows the device to track all four of Bowler's limbs, letting him touch and move various body parts, and interact with objects with surprising accuracy. 

"So we recently put hands in the game. Everybody's been putting hands in their games. Then we decided to put arms in the game, and we're not going to ship this yet, but it's getting there," explains Bowler. 

"We wanted to do more than just this, like a lot more. And we thought we could probably capture what a human looks like in VR, so we decided to try that with just controllers and two Vives. 

"So we've got four wireless controllers and two Vives running, and look what happened, we have a pretty good facsimile of the human body in VR. I can look down and see my feet, see my knees. I can see my torso and tap my human chest to tap my virtual chest."

Bowler points out that full body recognition could have huge implications for multiplayer games and social titles, giving users an unprecedented level of control over how they interact with the environment around them and even other players. 

You can watch the experiment for yourself, which looks to be the first of many, in the video above.

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