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NDreams' Patrick O'Luanaigh on his VR epiphany

Challenges and opportunities
NDreams' Patrick O'Luanaigh on his VR epiphany

Sometimes you just feel it in your guts.

That's what Patrick O'Luanaigh, the CEO of UK developer NDreams was talking about at Pocket Gamer Connects London 2015.

More specifically, O'Luanaigh was focusing on the company's year-long fascination and experimentation with virtual reality; something he called its "VR epiphany".

"It's all about presence," he said, referring to the term that all VR advocates argue is the technology's unique selling point.

Seeing double

Still, the journey from epiphany to releasing games hasn't been easy, especially with key technology such as Oculus Rift still a year away.

In the meantime, NDreams is focusing on Samsung's Gear VR as its default standard, while also including mass-market (and less advanced) technologies such as Google Cardboard and the Zeiss VR One.

"There's a challenge of fidelity," O'Luanaigh comments.

"You have to run at 2560x1440 at 60fps and draw everything twice."

And it's the latter number that is most important, or even  "super important".

Listen well

O'Luanaigh is happy to point out that not everything you've heard about VR is correct.

VR doesn't need to be first-person, he says, also noting that NDreams has made games that don't have character movement or indeed requiring the use of controller input.

Interesting, however, he says "audio is really important", something that may be an issue for mobile game developers, who tend not to treat the ear as a vital sensor input.

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You can see all our Pocket Gamer Connects London 2015 footage here.

We are now gearing up for Pocket Gamer Connects San Francisco 2015, which will be held on 7-8 July.

You can see more details and register for the show here.