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Elite Dangerous in VR needs a good round of polishing (link from FD Forum)

MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
This is long overdue! Link post provided by CMDR Vithigar which I have said for ages also...
There are a few things that I think are straight-up broken. By this I mean that you cannot safely assume that a new player with minimal knowledge would be able to resolve them alone, and they directly impact the game experience:
  • Lack of automatic audio switching to the VR headset on all platforms
  • Lack of automatic centring on loading into main menu
  • Lack of useful galaxy map default control bindings for navigation in VR without a mouse (edit: missing bindings is possibly just an issue with my setup based on comments here and elsewhere, but there are enough threads elsewhere complaining about the galaxy map in VR that something should probably be done to improve it.)
  • Lack of ability to effectively even use the galaxy or system maps with a mouse in VR

Beyond these are issues that I simply consider inconvenient or aggravating. They won't (usually) impact a person's ability to play the game, but they're small annoyances which impede enjoyment of the game regardless.
  • Starting Elite Dangerous in VR immediately overrides your screen resolution and fullscreen/window settings, forcing you to manually reset them if you switch between playing in VR and on a monitor.
  • Manually recentred headset position is not remembered between game launches.
  • Elite Dangerous doesn't seem to reliably take window focus when starting, requiring users to manually click on or tab to the window before it will accept input. If you're already wearing a headset when you launch the game, this is awkward.
  • No native way to input system names on the galaxy map. Not everyone keeps a keyboard in arms reach of their cockpit setup, and not everyone can take advantage of the Rift's Dash popup keyboard.
  • HUD elements being rendered at a distance further from the viewer than objects outside your cockpit is uncomfortable and disconcerting when an outside object that's visually closer overlaps a distant element.


  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    Also...The HUD still does need a clean up! I am seriously annoyed it still does not use the left info box which has Station & System for added "known data" rather than the upper right info box. We get the name of the System in 3 (three) places at the same time when jumping!
    It is horrible in VR to constantly have "Fuel Scooping", "Slow Down", "Frameshift charging" etc. written in BIG on our HUD in the way of other things we need to be focused on!

    Besides, when info IS KNOWN it seriously should NOT say UNKNOWN whilst we jump. Plus this loading screen should NOT disable ALL THE PANELS!!! We need this time to prepare our next action especially if we want to access System/Gal Maps to either run away fast or find our target destination on the fly e.g. a Station to Repair/Refuel/Re-arm whilst being chased!
  • CardnimCardnim Posts: 8
    edited April 2018
    I have to say that I disagree with almost all of the above..... with the exception of the Galaxy Map which, while definitely still usable with VR and mouse, is far from ideal.
    Im wondering if its your settings or some other parameter that is negatively affecting the game play?

    I love ED with my Oculus and its one of the nicest VR experiences I can have with menus, HUDs and information laid out in pretty much the way I would want it.

    I hope you can get things sorted out soon as Im pretty confident that ED in VR should be a really good experience for you.
    Good luck! :)
  • bigmike20vtbigmike20vt Posts: 4,074 Valuable Player
    I think the thing OP is not considering is that ED is a flat screen game with superb "optional" VR support.  It is imo still the shining example of how VR can transform a game, but at the end of the day it isnt a VR game... and so improvments to its VR are low down on the list of priorities.

    there are 100s of improvements that ED desperately needs, however imo all of the ones in the OP are very minor, and actually non existant to the majority of the playerbase..... get as angry as you like but sadly it wont get it any higher up on the "to do" list.

    imo the galmap works just fine in VR IF you spend the time to set it up right.... i agree off the bat it is less than ideal but one just needs to spend 10mins to get it sorted.....  however it would be nice of our settings did not randomly get wiped after an update!.
    Fiat Coupe, gone. 350Z gone. Dirty nappies, no sleep & practical transport incoming. Thank goodness for VR :)
  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    The GalMap I use Thrustmaster. I must always centre my Hotas throttle as I use this for Y-Axis (you got to bind them all some ways), and this makes the Selection of Route, Waypoint, System, Trade Data & Planet a random lucky dip! If it fails to focus on these switches then you end up having to go between screens to reset it properly. I find the method to move the pointer best by using the left Panel to Select Station/Bases much more persistent and instant but this can also mess up!
    Using the Debug Tool is a major incredible VR experience now with PixelDensity=2. For me it used to struggle but now it's almost like real and not much aliasing. Surface textures are so smooth. This should be within the game by now as its a dogs dinner with PD=1.

    Once they fix the Rift Firmware/Drivers again to rid the judder it will be heaven ;)
    (only get that Market on a Curved Screen guys)
  • bigmike20vtbigmike20vt Posts: 4,074 Valuable Player
    i dont use my throttle in the map..... i use my stick to strafe forwards/bacwards, left and right, then i use the yaw axis to spin...  then i use 2 other analogue axis which i am lucky as the x56 has tons of em, to use zoom and up/down plain... but if i didnt, i would set up my xbox pad to take the slack, which is at hand anyway as i use it for the srv.

    plenty of ways to skin a cat, it is just a matter of finding out what works for you.
    Fiat Coupe, gone. 350Z gone. Dirty nappies, no sleep & practical transport incoming. Thank goodness for VR :)
  • ChazmeisterChazmeister Posts: 538
    I just use my Thrustmaster HOTAS for the Gal map. Once you bind a reasonable setup and get used to using it, then the map is pretty much OK in VR. I can't imagine it'd be that much more harder to find a good setup on a pad either. The scroll speed in the system map is still way too slow though. A virtual keyboard would be nice though, as obviously you still need to use your real one for system searches.

    The only problem I've started encountering after the last patch, is that when I get in my SRV now, the seating position is now too far forward. Get back in your ship and it's back to normal. So somehow they've gone and offset the SRV seating position in VR. Put in a bug report a while back about, so it may get fixed sometime this year.
  • JD-UKJD-UK Posts: 2,289 Valuable Player
    edited April 2018
    Yes - I agree. I used to get very irritated with the map and trying to not just find systems, but select them as well. Then I spent some time  thinking a bout it, testing, and then found a way to use it all which enables me to get around without clenching my teeth.

    I have a few of my HOTAS axes set to move the map around and two dial-sliders on the X56 throttle control the cursor. But the only way I can do that is to first turn the map "flat" (using my stick Y axis to do that) so that I'm looking at it from directly above or directly below - then it's really easy.

    I use an axis on the stick ministick for zooming in and out and the twist stick for yawing the map round. It all works very well.
    The only thing that still could do with some work imho is entering system names. I generally use copy and paste for that (Ctrl-C and -V not the mouse) and either copy the name from a website or type the system out in notepad and copy it to the clipboard before I go into the map, then paste it in the box. My keyboard is quite old and a lot of the letters are worn away, so trying to type in VR can be doubly taxing.

    I have no issues with just moving my Rift up onto my forehead and referring to system info on the net - or EDDB etc, I do it all the time and I liken it to pulling over to look at the map :)

  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    edited April 2018
    So to improve maps for VR I suggest: -
    System Map: the joystick speed is improved to be quicker to move around thus use the dynamic speed within the movement of the stick as easy to lock on. The area of magnetic lock on should be bigger to help this.
    Galaxy Map: for Mouse it's easy to find the Target Circle but in VR & Hotas it should not be a flat circle to require that one plane to view it. So make the Target a 3D Sphere and also bigger.
    Perhaps I need to setup a Deadzone to enable the Throttle for Z-Axis to not get stuck but at least the tilt won't need to be used only to simply enable seeing your Target View so it may not be a problem once we get a Target Sphere.
    Pixel Density & AWS Settings in game also.
  • LuciferousLuciferous Posts: 2,143 Valuable Player
    I think ED made a great start with VR which has since stagnated. Overall the game has been slow to bring anything new to the table since launch.
  • Devlin-DarksideDevlin-Darkside Posts: 130
    Well the whole game needs a refresh imo, they need to sell a new DLC for some cash. This alien thing is a bit pants and just fluff. The game needs some substance and yes I agree the VR side needs some work.
  • bigmike20vtbigmike20vt Posts: 4,074 Valuable Player
    edited April 2018
    yeah..... honestly i am a life long Elite fanboy. right from the 1984 verson (albeit ittruly hooked me in 198.......7 or 88 i think on the amiga. i even loved 1st encounters, despite is horrible bugs... But ED, after a promising start is losing its way i fear. the\devs swear all is good and there are as many devs working on it as ever.... however to me it feels like a game that isreally struggling to find its niche and does not want to draw a line in the sand for what TYPE of space game it wants to be for fear of losing players... and in failing to commit it may lose more.

    it is starting to smell to me like a game in maintanence mode... i really hope i am wrong as a life time pass owner hoping for at least 3 more full price DLCs to even come close to breaking even...   which actually is not why i backed it to that level back in the day. i just wanted it made.... but imo looking back in the DDF (Design Decision Forum) the game i thought i was backing does not seem to be the game FD are even TRYING to make now.

    i guess i am in a glum mood.  I still play from time to time (played tonight as it happens) but, perhaps Michael Brookes leaving the game to focus on Jurassiac park was a bleak omen as he is the published sci fi author who i think really did care about the game lore and the importance of verisimilitude  in a game like ED.
    With him gone and David Braben seemingly in a very back seat i worry Elite has lost its lore man, and its astronomy geek.   there ARE others there who think a similar way, but the head guy now - though a throughly nice chap - is more concerned with accessbility and getting to the action right away rather than the stratedgy and simulation side of flying space ships. i want more mechanical complexity and more environmental hazards where as it seems to me FD just want to make a MP only pew pew space game (which is odd as everything about ED at its core is fundamentally not multiplayer focussed, but almost all the major DLC so far has been MP only with their npc counterparts scrapped..
    oh well, with that depressing note i am off to bed

    Fiat Coupe, gone. 350Z gone. Dirty nappies, no sleep & practical transport incoming. Thank goodness for VR :)
  • kojackkojack Posts: 5,593 Volunteer Moderator
    MAC_MAN86 said:

    Pixel Density & AWS Settings in game also.
    Pixel Density control is in the game, it's the HMD Image Quality setting (called something like that, going from memory).
    ASW can't be controlled by the game. The Oculus SDK only exposes info on whether ASW is active, it doesn't give a way for a game to turn it on or off. Only the Oculus Debug tool and the runtime keyboard shortcuts can do that.

  • JD-UKJD-UK Posts: 2,289 Valuable Player
    I agree with ya Mike :)

    In fact, I've been thinking for a long time (and saying to anyone who will listen) is that we are being forced into space combat more than ever.

    It's one of the reasons I regularly bugger off into the void for a few weeks. I'm currently on a multi-month exploring trip and in no rush to get back to anywhere witha spaceport (except to cash in my cartograph data, of course).

    A good example - I'd been out to the extreme reaches of the galaxy last week - yesterday I arrived at one of the Colonia Highway spaceports to hand in my data and get my name on a few dozen more systems and the jump before the stop the very first sign I get of other 'life' about is a pirate trying to interdict me. It was the same the last time I went to Colonia. It gets boring - if I want a pew-pew space game I can just go and play Freespace 2 with its huge mods making it more modernised.

    During my last exploration trip, I wanted to get back to the Bubble so much, that when my ship got destroyed in a Neutron Star - a ship I'd spent a lot of time and money on modding for the job, I preferred to lose the ship and go back to my 'home' port, rather than pay up and go back a little bit to Colonia. Yet within a couple of weeks I was off out again - and got very bored very quickly cos it was too soon after the last trip, but the Bubble had become a pain.

    I thought v3 would sort things out - but if anything, it's made combat even more prevalent than before and all the things I enjoyed doing in the bubble have become tedious because not only do I have to literally fight all the time (or run from a fight), but the odds are almost always highly against me surviving (having a DBX and being attacked by a Python and 5 sidewinders is a good example that happens a lot on salvage missions).

    Getting a bounty on your head for scanning a data panel for the company that owns said datapanel is just so lundicrous, it beggars belief. This getting a bounty on the ship rather than the pilot is also a silly move imo. It's getting to the point where anything you do is going to get you wanted.

    I thought the original idea of conflict zones was that it was somewhere to go if you wanted to practice combat and earn a few credits without getting a bounty on your head. But you can do that all the time in normal play, because there are a zillion pirates waiting to jump you at every turn - even right next to a dozen bounty hunters and Fed Police at a beacon. Ridiculous. Also silly that those Feds don't even seem to notice the pirates until you get in a scrap with them - and then they come and steal the bounty if you happen to be reloading when the pirate ship goes "boom".

    Yet funnily, combat is the least paying activity I've come across.


    btw - I've liked this game since beta and played it more than any other. Can't see that continuing, though. I did read there is some great stuff coming in the next big update ("Beyond"?). If it doesn't deliver, I can see this game becoming something for the die-hards only.

  • ChazmeisterChazmeister Posts: 538
    edited April 2018
    What seems to happen to me, is that when I've been away for awhile, either just not played the game or been out exploring, it's as if the game looks at your profile and goes "Oh this cmdr hasn't been in combat for a week now." and it pumps up your chances of an interdiction to a really high percentage. If I've been away for one of those reasons, then almost the first thing that happens to me as soon as I jump to another system is that I'm interdicted. It's been like that for ages though.

    Overall I do think that your chances of encountering combat is a lot more balanced now that it was back in 2.0. Back in those days, if you took a bunch of missions your life would be hell with constant interdictions from mission spawned pirates that would just appear out of nowhere right behind you. Also pirates would just shoot and open up on you regardless of whether you were carrying cargo or not or had submitted. Now at least if you have no cargo, you can submit, wait for their scan and then carry on your way after the pirate flies off in disappointment.

    As for Feds and bounty hunters tackling pirates, I do see that quite a bit actually, especially at RES sites. In fact I often find it can be race to get to a fight and claim a bounty before the Feds clean up. If you're flying around scanning ships, then the chances are that the feds are doing the same, and when they come across a wanted ship, then they will open fire.

    The biggest problem I have with the game right now, is that nearly all the new activities are essential the same when you boil them right down to their core components, which is an RNG based grind to collect space junk to craft new bits. The galactic equivalent of "Bring me 10 rat's teeth.", only, 4 out of 5 rats keep dropping tails and eyeballs instead of teeth, so you end up having to stab 50 rats to get what you want. It's basically that writ large, and often with worse odds than that too. There's so many materials to collect now, and many with a variety of conditions that need to be met before you even have a chance of finding them, that it's become a bit of a piss take. It wouldn't be so bad if there was a chance of finding a cool weapon or ship part, but there isn't, it's all just junk. Imagine a Diablo game where every chest you opened just spewed out complete junk. A cloth cap, a broken sword hilt, a rusty shard of armour, the chain from a pendant etc etc. It'd be utter crap wouldn't it? And yet this is exactly what ED's loot gathering gameplay is all about. So it's not just a massive grind, it is also desperately dull and unsatisfying. Only 2 more broken sword hilts and 5 pieces of mouldy leather and I'll be able to upgrade my sword to tier 2 damage, wow! That's Elites gameplay that is.

    The multicrew and wing missions rewards are still crap compared to going solo. It's almost as if they just don't understand co-operative play at all. People on the whole won't simply play together just for the sake of playing together, they still need a nice juicy carrot dangling there in front of them to keep them going and a satisfying payoff at the end, especially so when the reward for not playing together is comparatively better. It needs to be the other way around. Working as a team should always pay greater dividends than working alone for the most part. Keep the solo rewards as they are and make the wing rewards better, simple really.

    So yeah, the next few updates really need to add some more activities and gameplay to the game that don't involve the collection of yet more bloody materials. We've got the exploration improvements coming towards the end of the year along with the planetary and lighting improvements. So hopefully that'll add a bit more too it. Also I still believe that they are planning some proper paid dlc content for this year too as far as I'm aware, as the Beyond updates are just the free content ones. So those who paid for the LEP should still be getting something for it this year (well we'd bloody better!).
  • JD-UKJD-UK Posts: 2,289 Valuable Player
    I didn't buy the LEP, my wife bought me the original and beta access and I then bought Horizons in beta. I don't mind buying good DLC, in a game where I feel I haven't been overcharged in the first place.

  • ChazmeisterChazmeister Posts: 538
    Fortunately I bought the LEP back in beta when it was only £35. I have spent a small fortune on paint jobs for my ships and the like though. So that kind of evens things out.
  • JD-UKJD-UK Posts: 2,289 Valuable Player
    yeah, lolz - to begin with I remember thinking "how sad - now they are charging us for paint jobs instead of letting us paint our own" - having hoped they would give us paint kits. Now I have purchased more paint jobs than I can remember - oh, and 'detail' weapons, too. Thought the 'detail' engines was a bit too daft, though.

    I actually like the weapons one (I chose red) because I can now tell when it's the tracer from my weapons that I can see - previously it was often hard to tell, in a big furball.
    I even bought two sets of shades for my virtual pilot to wear.

  • bigmike20vtbigmike20vt Posts: 4,074 Valuable Player
    ok i am just donning my fame suit and bearin mind i only feel this way because for me elite has never been  a competetive game..... but.,..... i ish FD had stuck to their kickstarter aim to have everything earnable ingame via jobs, reputation and ingame achievements, cosmetics the lot, BUT sell cash for credits in the store for those who want to accelerate their progress.
    (I totally get why some hate this idea) but for me, there is no enjoyment for any of the cosmetics.... but had i earned them via my cmdr doing stuff in game they would be a record of my achievements and they would mean something to me in game.....   ultimately i have not even bothered toput some of the ones i bought on because they have no interest to me.
    OTOH for me there has never been a grind in the game, and i am happy to progress slowly. ED is a game i hoped to play for years and if that meant it took me 5 years to get to an anaconda so be it. i do not believe any of the exploits which were left unchecked for years would have done so if FD made money out of credits... that said i respect ofthers feel different and that it is a contentious thing.

    Fiat Coupe, gone. 350Z gone. Dirty nappies, no sleep & practical transport incoming. Thank goodness for VR :)
  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    You MUST start E:D with AV=OFF for the connection to sustain whilst launching a 2nd Player Fighter.
  • MAC_MAN86MAC_MAN86 Posts: 2,262
    edited April 14
    BUG: when trying to enter a System Name in GalMap you must have the Grid=OFF and then switch it ON to have it allow your Target Circle to be seen when doing manual searching with controls.

    BUG: on first access to GalMap the select button never works to Plot Route until you close and access it again.
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