Playing a first-person shooter like Call of Duty with a virtual reality headset like the Oculus Rift or the Sony Morpheus seems like a recipe for ultra-realistic gaming bliss – until you sprint after virtual Germans and plow right into your actual living room wall.
When you wear a screen on your face, "there's a lack of situational awareness of the actual world," says Leap Motion co-founder Michael Buckwald, sipping a soda at a demo at the company offices in San Francisco. "Also, every time I want to take a sip of Coke, I have to take the Oculus Rift off."
"In a first-person shooter, you need to be able to turn around quickly," says Omar Khan, the lead Unity developer at Austin-based Chaotic Moon, which designed a humorous Oculus Rift game called Shark Punch. "And if you're sitting in a chair, tethered to a computer, it's very difficult to be able to turn. And to aim -- it's very awkward, it's kind of weird."