The Oculus Rift's virtual experiences become a little less immersive when you're barely moving in a chair with a headset on, playing on a gamepad—but you don't have to accept that reality anymore.
Their special Touch controllers, which theoretically let the user explore the VR world with their hands, aren't shipping until later this year. But Leap Motion has a universal mounting kit for their motion sensor that lets you control nearly any virtual reality headset with gestures.
If you're using an HTC Vive or holding out for a PlayStation VR headset and want motion controls, Leap Motion's sensor is your only hope. While the Vive actually has a camera capable of the same functionality, it's not actively reading gestures just yet. This requires quite a bit of extra processing power and most companies have opted to forego motion controls in the first iteration of their product. If you want a more active, immersive experience, this little add-on can provide that for a pretty reasonable price.
Leap's motion sensor isn't anything new, but it hasn't exactly worked well with VR headsets in the past because it was tough to mount. For $20, you can pick up a mounting bracket and solve that problem (or just get it along with the sensor for $90; also available on Amazon). Once mounted, you can use hand gestures to control virtual environments without the need for a gamepad.
It works with the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, but it's also OSVR compliant, so you can expect it to mount easily on any future headsets that follow the open standard. You just have to deal with yet another long cable hanging off of your PC.
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