It may not quite be the Holodeck from Star Trek, but the Omni from Virtuix could be the closest thing we’ve ever had to “real” virtual reality gaming, complete with motion sensing and a totally immersive experience. They’re almost ready to launch; they just need some funding help.
You might remember the Oculus Rift that has been making the rounds in the last year or two. With this headset, which is way better than Nintendo’s old Virtual Boy, you can literally look to your left or right and your in-game avatar will do the same. The 3D head-mounted display follows your movements. The Virtuix Omni goes further by effectively adding an omnidirectional treadmill under your feet, except this version has no moving parts. That saves costs, saves space and makes it much more feasible to have this kind of experience in the home.
The natural application here is with first-person shooters and action-adventure type games, but Omni could easily be adapted to all sorts of possibilities. Virtual travel tours, virtual home tours, virtual jogs through faraway lands where you are actually jogging… it’s all pretty awesome and achievable. In the video below, you’ll even see guys like Linus Sebastian (Linus Tech Tips) and Chris Pirillo saying how great Omni is.
Even though the Kickstarter campaign only started today with a funding goal of $150,000, it has already received nearly $400,000 in pledges and several of the early bird rewards for an Omni itself are already sold out. There are still some available at the $399 level and up, as of this writing, so get on it if you want to get immersed in a VR environment ASAP.