Your brain thinks you're being poisoned, but you're really just trying to enjoy a game of TF2.
By Tim Colwill on August 20, 2013 at 5:20 pm
Simulation sickness is a big problem for the developers of the Oculus Rift VR headset, and they’re actively looking at ways to combat it in order to help their product become easier for people to use. However, as Oculus VP Nate Mitchell revealed at the GDC Europe on the weekend, it’s proving difficult.
“In motion sickness there’s all this motion but you don’t visually perceive the walls and ceilings are moving,” said Mitchell. “This is what creates the conflict that makes you dizzy. With simulator sickness it’s basically the inverse. These are all the things you want to avoid as game developers.”
The current theory around what causes motion or simulator sickness is a built-in defense mechanism against neurotoxins which are causing the body to hallucinate — a conclusion the brain draws when what the eye is seeing and the motion the body is experiencing do not match.
“VR systems still have a long way to go here,” said Mitchell. “But this is the sort of thing developers like Oculus need to make.”
Mitchell thinks that reducing head bob will go a long way towards cutting simulator sickness, but says “it needs more research”.