The Oculus Guardian looks to be getting a big upgrade with Oculus Quest update v30, as noted by UploadVR. The Oculus Quest will soon be able to create those virtual Guardian boundaries up to 15 meters in length; that’s 49ft long for Americans like myself who aren’t used to metric sizing. We’re confirming the math with Facebook but, if the measurements are in the same proportion, this means the new maximum diagonal size of the Oculus Guardian would be 11.25 meters or nearly 37ft. That’s a substantial upgrade from the current maximum diagonal size, which rests at 7.5 meters or 24.6ft.
Oculus updated the Guardian around this time last year to be able to detect objects within the playspace, giving players a warning before they physically run into something. Now, of course, you might be asking yourself who has a 37ft diagonal area to play VR in? I certainly don’t, and I surmise most people don’t either, but this size upgrade is likely being aimed at a supporting few specific play experiences that aren’t currently widely available — or available at all due to platform limitations.
Upcoming titles like Space Pirate Arena are designed to enable unique local multiplayer experiences by taking full advantage of large play areas. If you’ve got a large garage or, even better, somehow have access to a warehouse, you’re going to be in for a treat when Space Pirate Arena launches sometime later this year. Space Pirate Arena creates a procedurally-generated play area that fits perfectly in your Oculus Guardian play space, allowing players to physically free-roam the virtual arena, take cover behind virtual obstacles, and take the other players out with a wide array of weapons. Space Pirate Arena currently supports 10m x 10m spaces, but could very well take advantage of the 50% larger play space.
Further out, it’s possible that Facebook is trying to court VR arcades and developers. While it’s not likely that we’ll see Far Cry VR get ported to the Oculus Quest, it certainly bodes well for bespoke wireless experiences in large play spaces. Facebook will likely need to introduce proper APIs that support local positioning before that happens, though. Who knows, maybe even some of the best Quest games will see new advantages to these playspace updates.
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