Valve has published a new video dedicated to VR project Half-Life: Alyx. The video is dedicated to the developer’s stories about what methods of moving they have adapted for the players. It is about three options. The traditional movement, teleportation with a “blink” at the moment of movement (the screen becomes black for a fraction of a second) and teleportation with a shift (the camera moves smoothly to the right point).
As the creators told us they have experimented a lot with the indicator of movement. The original version was strongly dissonant with the realistic environment. As a result Valve stopped on the variant with holographic legs display supplemented with stop animation to the necessary point. This allows players to choose the right angle of rotation and also clearly explains why they can not get into certain places.
Difficulties created different growth of gamers. Some testers could hit pipes, the ceiling or other objects with a virtual head, making it impossible to move around the location. You had to get down to solve the problem but not everyone understood it. So the developers decided to consider the distance from the feet to the groin when moving.
There’s also a lot of talk about the “trust system” in Valve. If we’re talking about a game with traditional control (gamepad, mouse and keyboard), the scenarios of moving a character can be divided into standard (forward, backward, stretch, and so on) and extraordinary (jumping on some object). In VR everything is more complicated. The studio found that in VR shootings player wants to have contact with the ground and stay away from the threat without paying attention to the environment. If you let him randomly teleport around the area and climb on all sorts of objects the focus on the enemy is lost.
So the movement parameters change during the Alyx shootout. The player needs to specify the desired direction of movement to get to the hideout rather than aiming for the desired point on the location. In addition, a person can be easily disoriented by change in height so Valve can not jump into a hole from afar. The player beamed to the edge of the failure then he will be allowed to look down and jump.
Another key element is the sound that accompanies every movement of the character including the footsteps and rustles of clothing as he looks out from behind the hideout. If the character “jumps” the sound of the step will be louder than usual. This technology allows the gamer to believe that he is in the game world.