Virtual reality is the next milestone in simulation/gaming immersion. Can it do better? Obviously. At this point, we have already seen omni-directional treadmill, hand-tracking, suits that let you feel the impact of being shot at, and a rig that lets you “fly”. Now, New Zealand-based Eight360 joins in with a 360-degree motion VR simulator, NOVA.
To be fair, 360-degree motion isn’t new; both Yaw VR and Feel Three have done it. The difference with NOVA is, it is kind of pro-grade stuff which money can’t buy. It is only available for lease to commercial entities for the purpose of training, amusement and educational purposes.
It could be described as a flight simulator’s equivalent. The spherical machine, which measures 5.9 feet (1.8 meters) in diameter and weighs in at 1,100 lbs (500 kilograms, can be used to train operators of machinery – thanks to its full unlimited rotation in all axes.
Eight360 said its simulators boast technology that can accurately translate the sensations of a virtual vehicle to the real world, thereby creating a sensation that the user is actually in the actual machine.
NOVA is designed to work with a host of PC games and simulators, including, but not limited to, DCS: World, X-Plane, and NoLimits 2 Roller Coaster Simulation. As far as buying for personal use, it is out of question.
According to Wonder World, Eight360 is leasing the NOVA at US$150,000 a year. However, the company do have plan to develop more affordable and smaller units for consumers. Though it is not clear when that will materialize. Meanwhile, you can learn more about NOVA HERE.
Source: Wonder World.