What are your Immersion Breaking Mechanics? — Oculus
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What are your Immersion Breaking Mechanics?

ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,379 Valuable Player
A decent video came out discussing 5 mechanics in VR that essentially work against immersion.
In particular:
  • Bad Audio (too quiet, too loud)
  • Motion Blur / Tunnel Vision when running
  • Going Through Walls
  • Non-interactable objects
  • Snap Turning



There are many aspects that define a good VR Game, and I believe that realism is essential. Defining realism is a bit tricky. Some people relate it to "graphic quality," but I do not. For example, the game, Pixel Ripped, intentionally has low-grade pixelated graphics, but it is a fantastic experience that doesn't suffer any of the 5 issues listed above. A good example of how irrelevant graphics are in VR, is to think of standing in two places in real-life: you could stand in the middle of the most beautiful Art Museum in the world, or you could stand in the the middle of a all white padded-cell. You will feel 100% immersed in both!

However, things like "motion blur" and "bad audio" will most definitely impact your senses, thus taking you out of the immersive experience. The issue of "snap turning" is an odd one, since even I tend to rely on it for some games that give me too much motion sickness. But for some people, I can understand how snap-turning can be immersion-breaking.

Of all the items listed, I personally can relate to the problem of "going through walls." This has always bothered me. And it's usually the first thing I check for in a good VR Game. Especially in puzzle/adventure games! There is nothing worse than being able to peak through a wall to essentially cheat your way through a puzzle (e.g. getting a clue from another room, or unlocking a door from the other side). Probably the one game that did this the best was: Wilson's Heart. Any time you put your head through the wall, the visuals became haunting as did the audio. This was not only a great feature, but it added to the overall theme and tone of the experience. Very few other VR experiences have matched what Wilson's Heart achieved in this regard.

I am interested in hearing anyone else's immersion breaking mechanics!
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Comments

  • nalex66nalex66 Posts: 4,685 Volunteer Moderator
    For me it’s “press A to interact” rather than physically (virtually) grabbing things. More generally, games like FO4VR and SkyrimVR that rely too much on button presses and pancake UI design rather than playing to the strengths of VR motion controllers. I have virtual hands, let me use them to interact with the virtual world!
    Guns that are perma-glued to your hand rather than picked up and held (and can’t be dropped) can also fall into this category, especially if they’re forced to be held in the right hand only. 
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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,379 Valuable Player
    nalex66 said:
    For me it’s “press A to interact” rather than physically (virtually) grabbing things. More generally, games like FO4VR and SkyrimVR that rely too much on button presses and pancake UI design rather than playing to the strengths of VR motion controllers. I have virtual hands, let me use them to interact with the virtual world!
    Guns that are perma-glued to your hand rather than picked up and held (and can’t be dropped) can also fall into this category, especially if they’re forced to be held in the right hand only. 

    Completely agree. That was the big beef I had with Skyrim VR (as I noted in my review). There was a sword on the wall and I just couldn't grab it! lol

    Going a bit further with what you describe... I actually wish that all games used the Touch's "grab" button for grabbing. Some games let you do it with the Trigger button, which throws everything off. I assume that in those games there was the ability to re-map the controls. But having to re-map is annoying. I feel that all software titles for VR should standardize which button is going to be used to grab. I mean hell, it is literally called the "grab button" lol
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  • Digikid1Digikid1 Posts: 2,025 Valuable Player
    broken tracking.
  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,379 Valuable Player
    Anything broken definitely sucks. I was thinking more in terms of when things are actually working, yet ruin the immersive experience.
    Are you a fan of the Myst games? Check out my Mod at http://www.mystrock.com/
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  • nalex66nalex66 Posts: 4,685 Volunteer Moderator
    Games that use the trigger for grab were generally developed on/for the Vive. The “grab” button on those wands was so poorly implemented that devs gave up on using them for the purpose. 

    A dev recently asked on the Quest subreddit what mechanic Oculus users wanted for picking up guns. He was a Vive-focused developer, and had used a trigger click to lock the gun to the hand (and a grab click to drop it). Just about every reply said they preferred “grab and hold” using the grab button. 
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  • snowdogsnowdog Posts: 6,989 Valuable Player
    Personally I think that games grabbing things need the option of the Grip button toggling the grab of an object AND the option of holding the Grip button to grab and keep hold of an object. Some people prefer the former, some prefer the latter. That's what I'm planning on doing if I ever get around to working on my game ever again :D
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  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,379 Valuable Player
    Agreed. Vader Immortal is a good example. I can squeeze the grip button to hold my light saber, but if I let go of the grip, my Saber stays in my hand. I find this odd. I end up keeping the grip button squeeze naturally, because my mind understands that if I want to continue gripping then I must continue squeezing!

    Being table to toggle is great. Options for users is the key to successful VR software implementations.
    :)
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  • kojackkojack Posts: 5,449 Volunteer Moderator
    Technically, it's called the "Hand Trigger".
    :)

  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,379 Valuable Player
    kojack said:
    Technically, it's called the "Hand Trigger".


    The hand trigger, yes. But there's also the "grip button" - at least that's how I've ready it over the Dev site.

    “Map the grip button to grab actions.”
    https://developer.oculus.com/documentation/pcsdk/latest/concepts/dg-input-touch-overview/

    Although I guess if we're being purely Technical, it's referred to as the IndexTrigger
    typedefenum ovrTouch_ {
      ovrTouch_A = ovrButton_A,
      ovrTouch_B = ovrButton_B,
      ovrTouch_RThumb = ovrButton_RThumb,
      ovrTouch_RThumbRest = 0x00000008,
      ovrTouch_RIndexTrigger = 0x00000010,
    https://developer.oculus.com/reference/libovr/1.39/o_v_r_c_a_p_i_8h/

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  • kojackkojack Posts: 5,449 Volunteer Moderator
    edited August 25
    Index Trigger is the trigger on your index finger.  :)
    Hand trigger doesn't appear in that ovrTouch structure because that's just for buttons/triggers with capacitive sensors, the hand trigger doesn't have one.
    It's in the ovrInputState, where there's HandTrigger, HandTriggerNoDeadzone and HandTriggerRaw.
    I think they did change its name at one point, but in code it's referred to as the hand trigger, so that's what I call it.

    But this is going off topic. :)


    I definitely don't like when games don't let you drop stuff, such as Doom.

    Another annoyance: games that have poor VR during loading screens (horrible framerates, no hands, etc). While it doesn't affect the game while playing, having a bad VR experience immediately before getting into the game isn't helpful.
  • ZenbaneZenbane Posts: 14,379 Valuable Player
    edited August 25
    Apologies, my brain is a bit derp today.

    Yes, obviously the IndexTrigger would be the Trigger for the Index finger - lol. When you said the word "trigger" it threw me off, and I wasn't even paying  proper attention to the word "index" in the code.

    So yes, you are correct, good sir! It is referred to as the "grip button" on the Oculus Developer docs, but that's not the technical term. As you said, the technical term is in fact... HandTrigger!

    if (OVR_SUCCESS(ovr_GetInputState(session, ovrControllerType_Touch, &inputState)))
    {
        if (inputState.Buttons & ovrButton_A)
        {
            // Handle A button being pressed
        }
        if (inputState.HandTrigger[ovrHand_Left] > 0.5f)
        {
            // Handle hand grip...
        }
    }
    https://developer.oculus.com/documentation/pcsdk/latest/concepts/dg-input-touch-buttons/

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  • hoppingbunny123hoppingbunny123 Posts: 512
    Trinity
    i use the rift to play apex legends in, and the one thing thats immersion breaking is its a bit front heavy and i got some nice racoon eyes from the weight.


    besides that my eyes see clearly out of only a small spot on the lenses and my left eye especially gets the droopy rift falling down and so goes out of focus a lot on my left eye.

    and i do notice the black borders around the lenses but i dont mind them i wish the sde was less prominent though.
  • SkScotcheggSkScotchegg Posts: 1,200
    Wintermute
    edited August 26
    I have a few things I dislike and I'm very unforgiving now of developers who are lazy and don't make an effort:

    Poor VR Hands:
    My biggest hate in VR is poor Virtual Hands in VR - Where all the fingers don't move and aren't programmed properly for Touch controllers. I've played so many games where devs just give you big bulky hands that act more like hammers then fingers, really annoys me. Also this is the first thing I look for when I launch any VR game. The game loads up and I instantly look down at my hands - usually followed by huge disappointment!

    Poor immersion controls:
    I agree with your comments on Skyrim VR and Fallout 4 VR because I shouldn't have to press A to collect or pickup an object, that's just lazy and silly.

    Poor implementation of Teleporting:
    Regarding snap turning mentioned above, maybe this will be a surprise to you guys but I've always used snap turning in every single game, I can't use smooth turning because it makes me sick. So I'm always in favour of devs giving all options for all games. I also like teleporting in games like Robo Recall, I don't mind teleporting when it's done right, some games have clunky teleporting though that pisses me off. But Robo Recall has the best teleporting as it's smooth and seemless. All devs should copy Robo Recall style teleporting when adding teleporting to their games. So my hate in this moment section is poor teleport implementation in games.

    Poor Sound:
    Sound should be valued as just as important as image quality and resolution in my opinion. The best sound I ever experienced in VR was when playing the game: "The Gallery - Episode 2: Heart of the Emberstone". That game has the best sound I've ever heard, I was like wow.

    But the 2nd part of this is - Oculus still hasn't released an addon/attachment for external headphones for their Rift S. I want built in headphones like Rift CV1 - This is still so bad that they haven't done this yet.

    Environment issues/Going through walls:
    You shouldn't be able to accidentally go through walls which results in a black screen, most games are ok with this but some games like Vader Immortal handle this really bad.
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  • hoppingbunny123hoppingbunny123 Posts: 512
    Trinity
    edited August 26
    one thin i would like to add is my rift mold on the bottom that touches my cheekbones the mold is too small so it doesnt sit on my cheekbones but on the bottom of my eye sockets which is a bit uncomfortable/immersion breaking.

    i got racoon eyes from my rift

  • Shadowmask72Shadowmask72 Posts: 3,692 Valuable Player
    Discomfort - looking at you Oculus Quest.
    Clipping through characters
    Non character reactions when you poke,push touch, grab them - At least in Skyrim VR they back away from you and how old is that game?
    loading screens - From Other Suns YUK!


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  • NeawoulfNeawoulf Posts: 62
    Hiro Protagonist
    edited August 26
    I don't like games with lots of tutorials all the time, too many UI elements, invisible walls etc. When i play i want to decide where to go, what to do and how to do it. And i hate gps gaming (following map/compass markers) all the time.

    And some specified vr things: I don't like games with wrong ipd/world scale and no option to change that. I also don't like teleport movement and snap turning. Also don't like vr games where i have to do things with my hands all the time. That's not an immersion thing, that's just a gameplay decision i don't like. One of the reasons for this might be that my vr play area isn't that big.

    And one more thing i absolutely HATE in vr cockpit games (flight and racing sims) is physical head/cockpit movement triggered by rotation or g-forces. When i sit in my racing chair i'm connected to my chair and my chair should be connected to my virtual car. Having the camera jumping around all the time inside my virtual vehicle doesn't just kill the immersion (because my virtual head does movements my real head doesn't do), it also disconnects me from my vehicle which makes precise reaction inputs to stabilize my virtual car/plane a lot harder. I'm just glad most sim developers are aware of this and give me the option to disable this stuff. Some players still seem to like these rotation/g-force related camera movements/camera locked to horizon to not get motion sick, but i absolutely hate it.

    And very few vr games (The Vanishing of Ethan Carter VR is the only one i'm currently aware of) use stuff like camera shake even in games where you move around on your feed. It's rare and i still love that game in vr, but these short moments are really uncomfortable.
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  • EvileyesEvileyes Posts: 344
    Trinity
    None of the others matter. MOTION SICKNESS. it keeps me from playing in general.
  • RedRizlaRedRizla Posts: 6,560 Valuable Player
    edited August 26
    Comfort, if a VR headset is uncomfortable then what is the point of it in the first place? To expect people to spend time in something that is uncomfortable is a bit pointless. Hate the spongy stuff Oculus use on their face plates and always have to purchase something from VR Cover. Not only is it uncomfortable but I find it unhygienic due to sweat build up after just one use. Got the PV stuff from VR Cover now though, so I can't complain. I just wipe the PV after each use and it's good to go again.
    Another thing I find immersive breaking is when the headset is too front heavy like some have said about the Oculus Quest. I think the should balance the weight of a headset out more evenly or just use the halo design like Rift S. I found the Rift S headset to be comfortable, but again Oculus insisted on using that shitty foam on the face plate.
  • JoeManji08JoeManji08 Posts: 132
    Art3mis
    If my hands in VR don't line up with my hands in real life, it's an instant refund.  Same thing if the floor in VR doesn't line up with the floor in real life.  I don't care how good the game seems in all other aspects.

    One example with the floor was Rogan.  I'm slightly below average height, and the windows the game wants you to look through were made for a 6 and a half foot player.  Instead of adjusting the world scale or making the windows a bit taller to fit a wider variety of players, the game had me floating over a foot in the air when I calibrated it.  I tried standing on a container while I calibrated to get the floor at the correct position, but then all of the obstacles I was supposed to look over or windows I was supposed to look through were too high.
  • Digikid1Digikid1 Posts: 2,025 Valuable Player
    Evileyes said:
    None of the others matter. MOTION SICKNESS. it keeps me from playing in general.
    You’ll adapt. Everyone does. 
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