Microsoft demos 'mixed reality gaming' capabilities of HoloLens with Minecraft

Posted:
in General Discussion edited June 2015
Microsoft's upcoming HoloLens virtual reality accessory took the stage at E3 on Monday, with the company showing how "mixed reality gaming" will work on the future hardware, via its popular Minecraft universe.


Source: Microsoft


Minecraft developer Mojang AB did a presentation during Microsoft's Electronic Entertainment Expo keynote, in which the HoloLens was used to interact with a Minecraft world as projected onto a table.

Microsoft's augmented reality glasses create the illusion that virtual worlds are actually mixed with the real world in front of the user. In this demonstration, the map of a Minecraft world was placed on a table, and the user wearing HoloLens could interact with the map, items, and characters displayed in front of them.

The HoloLens demo was done in tandem with a second player who was controlling their own Minecraft character via a Microsoft Surface.




Further details on HoloLens, such as release date or pricing, were not revealed. The company simply said that HoloLens will support a fully-featured version of Minecraft that will allow players to explore the game world in full 3D.

Microsoft unveiled HoloLens back in January, generating a large amount of buzz for its hardware concept. The Redmond, Wash., software giant is betting big on the future of virtual reality, as it has also partnered with Oculus Rift and game maker Valve's VR collaboration with HTC.

HoloLens looks much like a plastic headband with a glass shield over the wearer's eyes. The device contains a full computer, including what Microsoft says is a "high-end" CPU and GPU, along with an in-house "holographic processing unit."




The shield itself is see-through, and it projects holograms directly over what the user sees, giving the illusion of virtual and physical worlds merging together.

Microsoft didn't say on Monday whether HoloLens will work with the Xbox One game console or if it will just operate with Windows 10 devices. The company's collaboration with Valve VR is for Windows 10 only, and does not apply to Xbox One.

Meanwhile, the Oculus Rift partnership will allow users to stream Xbox One games to their Windows 10 PC, where the games can be played in a 3D-like "theater mode" that does not change the gameplay of the titles themselves.

Apple has shown interest in virtual reality through patent filings and a number of hiring sprees, but the company does not announce future technology well in advance, unlike Microsoft and its strategy with HoloLens. If Apple is indeed working on a consumer virtual reality product, its existence likely would not be revealed until the product is nearly finalized, as it did in unveiling the Apple Watch in late 2014 before an early 2015 launch.

As for Microsoft's Xbox One console, the company is banking on sequels and re-releases of established franchises and titles, such as "Halo 5: Guardians," "Forza Motorsport 6," "Gears of War: Ultimate Edition," "Fable Legends," and "Rare Replay," all of which will be available this fall.

It's believed that Apple could become a competitor in the set-top box gaming market with an anticipated update for its Apple TV hardware said to be in the works. It is rumored that the new hardware will include an App Store where titles such as games could be downloaded and played on an HDTV, pitting the Apple TV against the likes of the Xbox One, Sony's PlayStation 4, and Nintendo's Wii U.
«1

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 24
    cornchipcornchip Posts: 1,249member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    Further details on HoloLens, such as release date or pricing, were not revealed. 

     

     

    Hmm. 

  • Reply 2 of 24
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,148member
    cornchip wrote: »
    Hmm. 

    Or color ... brown maybe? :D
  • Reply 3 of 24
    all they are doing is trying to keep people on using Windows, without it it won't work
  • Reply 4 of 24
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Reply 5 of 24
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cornchip View Post

     

     

    Hmm. 


    Well to be fair E3 isn't about the Hololens; it's about gaming. I'm sure pricing and everything will be revealed when the actual product is released

  • Reply 6 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Let me guess...all the tech blogs are going ape shit over this right now.
  • Reply 7 of 24
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    Let me guess...all the tech blogs are going ape shit over this right now.

    Watch the video yourself and tell me you aren't at the very least impressed

  • Reply 8 of 24
    robertcrobertc Posts: 118member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post



    Let me guess...all the tech blogs are going ape shit over this right now.

    Not really. Websites like Anandtech are too busy posting their Metal vs OpenGL ES analysis and their first look at OS X El Capitan.

     

    AppleInsider on the otherhand...

     

    It was an impressive demo and the news over the past week of Microsoft working with Oculus, Valve and developing their own HoloLens puts them in a pretty good standing when it comes to VR/AR.  I would not say the same about Apple.

  • Reply 9 of 24
    bloggerblogbloggerblog Posts: 1,820member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dklebedev View Post



    Leave your bets: vaporware or not?



    I don't believe the entire HoloLens system is vaporware, but they won't be able to deliver at the level their videos claim.

    The VR imagery will not cover the entire peripheral vision, nor will the graphics be completely opaque, nor will VR objects be able to properly cast shadows or match light direction, or work as fluidly as their videos show. Nothing MS has done in the past worked well, not even during their keynotes. Those parts and some others are definitely vaporware.

  • Reply 10 of 24
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,743member
    "Microsoft Research" (Lol!)
    "Demos"
    "Promises"

    Results over the last decade:

    Windows/Office rehashes
    Windows Vista and Windows 8
    Office rehashes over web
    Gaming console things
    Failed mobile phone platform
    Another failed mobile phone platform
    Failed mp3/music platform
    Failed tablet platform that came shortly before their...
    Tractionless frankentablet platform
    Office mobile rehashes that work better on other platforms
    "Services" that work better on other platforms

    It's astounding that a company with that much money, capable of paying for that much talent, can be so perennially behind the ball and so generally godawfully shitty. Big talk and chest-thumping, but lousy execution (if they manage to at all.)

    Jobs said many years ago that there is no "culture" in their products, most of which are third-rate. It wasn't simply a correct observation at the time. It was prophetic.
  • Reply 11 of 24
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    robertc wrote: »
    Not really. <span style="line-height:1.4em;">Websites like Anandtech are too busy posting their Metal vs OpenGL ES analysis and their first look at OS X El Capitan.</span>


    <span style="line-height:1.4em;">AppleInsider on the otherhand...</span>

    <span style="line-height:1.4em;"> </span>

    <span style="line-height:22.3999996185303px;">It was an impressive demo and the news over the past week of Microsoft working with Oculus, Valve and developing their own HoloLens puts them in a pretty good standing when it comes to VR/AR.  I would not say the same about Apple.</span>

    Does Apple need to be in this space? I don't really get the appeal outside of gamers.
  • Reply 12 of 24
    nikon133nikon133 Posts: 2,600member

    I don't believe the entire HoloLens system is vaporware, but they won't be able to deliver at the level their videos claim.
    The VR imagery will not cover the entire peripheral vision, nor will the graphics be completely opaque, nor will VR objects be able to properly cast shadows or match light direction, or work as fluidly as their videos show. Nothing MS has done in the past worked well, not even during their keynotes. Those parts and some others are definitely vaporware.

    Yep... this first iteration is basically a proof of concept. It works, but it's limited. I'd expect limited hologram field of view is dictated by hardware and power requirements. It will take a few generations to get to the point where hardware will be able to cover (big part of) full field of view, while still maintaining usable battery life.

    As of usefulness of such device, that's completely different matter. New Kinect is quite advanced piece of hardware, but there still isn't too much use for it, outside of some sports & fitness games. HoloLens will also be defined by usage scenarios people imaging to put on it. Hardware will be there - eventually - but it will still need a must-have usage proposition to make it successful.
  • Reply 13 of 24
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post



    "Microsoft Research" (Lol!)

    "Demos"

    "Promises"



    Results over the last decade:



    Windows/Office rehashes

    Windows Vista and Windows 8

    Office rehashes over web

    Gaming console things

    Failed mobile phone platform

    Another failed mobile phone platform

    Failed mp3/music platform

    Failed tablet platform that came shortly before their...

    Tractionless frankentablet platform

    Office mobile rehashes that work better on other platforms

    "Services" that work better on other platforms



    It's astounding that a company with that much money, capable of paying for that much talent, can be so perennially behind the ball and so generally godawfully shitty. Big talk and chest-thumping, but lousy execution (if they manage to at all.)



    Jobs said many years ago that there is no "culture" in their products, most of which are third-rate. It wasn't simply a correct observation at the time. It was prophetic.

    Yeah, but anyone can play the selective game

     

    We can talk about:

     

    Windows XP/7

    Windows in general, which runs on over a billion computers worldwide

    The Xbox, which while not as successful as the PlayStation is a tough competitor

    The hugely successful Windows 10 Insider program

    Office, which is still the most popular productivity suite

    The Microsoft Band

     

    Or if you'd prefer we could discuss:

     

    Apple III

    Apple Newton

    Apple QuickTake

    Apple Pippin

    The ROKR

    Apple Maps

    Apps that no one uses like NewsStand, iBooks, GameCenter

     

    Every company makes mistakes

  • Reply 14 of 24
    blitz1blitz1 Posts: 412member

    This is really an amazing piece of tech...

     

    With siri, with watch, with kinect, with hololens, ... it looks like we're seeing the outskirts of new ux's.

  • Reply 15 of 24
    nasseraenasserae Posts: 3,153member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dklebedev View Post



    Leave your bets: vaporware or not?

     

    MS will release it but no one outside geeks will buy it.

  • Reply 16 of 24
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    Wii U is the best console by a longshot.

    The new Smash Bros has every damn iconic video game character under the sun!!

    But Nintendo has the most stupid marketing team ever.
  • Reply 17 of 24
    pdbreskepdbreske Posts: 39member
    Am I the only one who sees a future of "games" that allow the user to walk in public while this device overlays a pistol or rifle in the hands of the wearer and puts virtual bullet wounds and blood splatters on real human targets, without the user actually breaking any laws? I suppose if the onboard computer were powerful enough, the graphics engine could remove the actual people from view and replace them with dead bodies after a "kill." The most popular games almost all involve shooting and/or killing aliens/zombies/people, so why shouldn't this be the next, logical evolution of the genre? I don't have kids, but I would hope that parents would have some reservations about buying such an app for their children.
  • Reply 18 of 24
    revenantrevenant Posts: 489member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Quadra 610 View Post



    "Microsoft Research" (Lol!)

    "Demos"

    "Promises"



    Results over the last decade:



    Windows/Office rehashes

    Windows Vista and Windows 8

    Office rehashes over web

    Gaming console things

    Failed mobile phone platform

    Another failed mobile phone platform

    Failed mp3/music platform

    Failed tablet platform that came shortly before their...

    Tractionless frankentablet platform

    Office mobile rehashes that work better on other platforms

    "Services" that work better on other platforms



    It's astounding that a company with that much money, capable of paying for that much talent, can be so perennially behind the ball and so generally godawfully shitty. Big talk and chest-thumping, but lousy execution (if they manage to at all.)



    Jobs said many years ago that there is no "culture" in their products, most of which are third-rate. It wasn't simply a correct observation at the time. It was prophetic.



    except now they have a different leader. things are changing for microsoft, it may not always be for the better, but there is no way this is vapoware.

  • Reply 19 of 24
    The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Reply 20 of 24
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,209moderator
    pdbreske wrote: »
    Am I the only one who sees a future of "games" that allow the user to walk in public while this device overlays a pistol or rifle in the hands of the wearer and puts virtual bullet wounds and blood splatters on real human targets, without the user actually breaking any laws? I suppose if the onboard computer were powerful enough, the graphics engine could remove the actual people from view and replace them with dead bodies after a "kill." The most popular games almost all involve shooting and/or killing aliens/zombies/people, so why shouldn't this be the next, logical evolution of the genre? I don't have kids, but I would hope that parents would have some reservations about buying such an app for their children.

    step 1 - invent horrible future scenario
    step 2 - express outrage at invented future scenario (for the sake of the children)

    Shooting games typically don't use passive civilian targets. They give you a reason to shoot people by defining them as a combative enemy.

    The scenario you describe would only be done in an Indie mobile game where there's very little quality standards but even then, it would be technically challenging doing photoreal 3D object creation and removal and motion capture in real-time in a large environment. Plus there isn't a promotion of violent feelings with violent games. Shooting in games is simply a mechanism for overcoming an obstacle at a distance.

    You are presented with a scenario where your character has an objective. An enemy is stopping you completing that objective. Some games focus on avoiding detection via stealth, others on removing the obstacle via combat. You can only take down a combative enemy at close range or long range. If it's close, you use melee combat, if it's long range then you need a weapon like a gun, bow and arrow, poison darts, knives etc.

    What makes killing in games worse is when developers make the character feel remorse over killing like in Tomb Raider when Lara kills the animals for food. You aren't made to care about the enemy whose head you just drove an ice pick into but the poor deer had to suffer so the player feels worse for the deer. When killing is treated like a game mechanic then it's no different from any other game mechanic like jumping or collecting items. Even with games like Doom or Mortal Kombat that purposefully make killing expressive like running a chainsaw through enemies, it's treated more like comedy than violence because it's not real. Like in Monty Python where they chop all the limbs off.

    You can see an example of shooting in VR with the Oculus Rift here:


    [VIDEO]


    http://www.theverge.com/2013/8/6/4595062/new-oculus-rift-cover-shooter-fps-ulta-realistic

    Some people would immediately be put off seeing the kid holding the controller like a gun but look at the kid's reactions through the game. It's about scoring points like any other game and getting past the enemy. He's not angry or violent through any of it, it's fun. If you want to turn kids into gun toting psychopaths then put their parents through a divorce and every day make them feel like an unwanted waste of space or generally deprive them of a good quality of life and give them easy access to dangerous weapons.

    That's not to say that parents should all go out and buy violent games - they should respect age ratings on games. An 18-rated game isn't suitable for a 7 year old just like an 18-rated movie isn't. Children are very adept at assimilating behavior they observe so they shouldn't be exposed to violent or sexual activity, not because it will make them feel angry or violent but copying activity shown can hurt people by accident.

    If VR ever did get integrated into the real world where someone could walk around with the glasses on, it would be more likely to be done by putting virtual AI enemies in amongst the crowd that a player would have to kill in order to protect the civilians because without an enemy or objective, it would get unbelievably boring within 5 minutes. It would still be boring shooting in one scene unless there was something else to do. Like if a group of friends were doing multiplayer or the game had a map where it could lead people to an objective. Just shooting at waves and waves of targets is not interesting gameplay at all. Every major shooting game has a plot behind it of some kind that gives the reason for being in a particular environment with a particular enemy.

    Assassin's Creed isn't primarily a shooting game but has a lot of combat and an upcoming one will focus on Victorian London:

    http://blog.ubi.com/assassins-creed-syndicate-jacob-evie-london-rooks/


    [VIDEO]


    You can see how the game theme defines the writing and artwork of the characters and environment. This doesn't translate easily to real world settings. You couldn't map that kind of world to an outdoor setting. At best VR will allow you to feel more immersed in those fictional environments in your own home and it'll be applied to some movies to give a better sense of depth. People have gotten so used to seeing media content in 2D that is seems normal but it's not how we see the real world. It needs to transition to 3D so that when we change perspective, it looks like it's happening in front of us. When you look at photographs of your family years ago, they bring back memories but they aren't like your memories that are in 3D. You will be able to take 3D snapshots of your kids when they were young and playing them back will be like they are still taking their first steps right in front of you.

    VR gaming and activities will have something unique to it the way that touch interaction has for mobile. It will be another category of interaction that won't necessarily replace the others.
Sign In or Register to comment.