Past being an amazing VR recreation, Beat Saber has inadvertently turned out to be a superb benchmark of controller monitoring efficiency, and thus an amazing take a look at for the upcoming Oculus Quest standalone headset, the primary from the corporate to characteristic inside-out monitoring. Having performed Beat Saber’s highest problem (Skilled+) on Quest, I’m now assured that it’s as much as the duty.
With Quest launching in only a few months, and one of the crucial profitable VR titles up to now—Beat Saber—confirmed as a launch title, the measure of some other standalone VR headset within the close to future could be very more likely to turn into ‘Can it play Beat Saber‘?
It’s a tall order for any VR system, contemplating the excessive degree of monitoring efficiency essential to make Beat Saber not simply really feel good, however be actually playable all the way in which as much as its most difficult Skilled+ problem. PSVR’s monitoring simply barely makes the minimize, however seasoned Beat Saber gamers will instantly discover the added latency (and significantly smaller monitoring quantity) in comparison with the gold requirements of VR monitoring on the Rift and Vive.
Even then, Beat Saber gamers have been pushing the Vive controller monitoring to limits which Valve had not initially thought of humanly doable, prompting the corporate to replace its monitoring code to account for the pace of high-level gamers.
So it might be no small feat for Oculus Quest, which makes use of an inside-out monitoring system, to have the ability to deal with Beat Saber at Skilled+ problem. However once I tried the sport on Quest eventually month’s GDC, I discovered that it’s undoubtedly as much as the duty.
The very first thing I observed when placing on the headset and firing up ‘POP/STARS’—essentially the most difficult Skilled+ observe of the four-track choice introduced within the GDC demo—is that the latency and accuracy feels a lot tighter than on PSVR, and far nearer to what I’d count on from the Rift or Vive. For reference, this video exhibits the notice sequence of the music on Skilled+ and the corresponding actions that the monitoring needed to sustain with:
Decrease latency and better accuracy means a greater alignment (in house and time) between your actual hand and your digital hand. With an excessive amount of latency, the swords in Beat Saber will really feel ‘floaty’, which may be particularly difficult when coping with strings of reverse notes (ie: a lot of up/down arrows in a row). With out sufficient accuracy you’re vulnerable to miss extra usually.
With latency and accuracy feeling excellent, one other massive query for Beat Saber on Quest is monitoring protection. Protection is a problem for inside-out monitoring as a result of such techniques sometimes depend on line-of-sight between cameras on the headset and controllers in your fingers, which may generally be blocked. Whereas Quest’s 4 cameras do certainly have some blind spots (notably behind the ahead place of the headset), the front-facing nature of Beat Saber by no means comes into battle with them. And in these events the place an arm may briefly occlude the opposite controller the system appears to deal with it with out flaw.
Quest has 4 cameras on the corners of the headset to trace the world across the consumer together with the controllers. | Picture courtesy Oculus
Consistency—how usually the monitoring works with none gross errors—is in fact important for high-level Beat Saber play, since you by no means need to really feel just like the headset is inflicting you to make errors. Having finishing ‘POP/STARS’ with on Skilled+ with a ~90% combo, I performed 4 extra instances (on totally different tracks). Throughout these 5 gamers there was just one occasion the place I missed a notice and felt prefer it was the system’s fault and never my very own. Estimating roughly 650 notes per Skilled+ music, that’s an error fee of ~zero.03%, which is under the 99.9% consistency threshold that I might say any type of enter must not frustrate the consumer.
So Quest’s monitoring, for Beat Saber particularly, feels fairly darn good—significantly better than PSVR, and almost nearly as good as I’d count on when enjoying Skilled+ songs on Rift or Vive. In fact, sure environmental components (issues like brilliant lights, mirrors, and many others) could cause challenges for inside-out monitoring. Till now we have Quest in our fingers to attempt anyplace and in every single place, we received’t understand how strong it’s to different environments, however in the fitting setting it achieves a surprisingly excessive bar for monitoring efficiency.
Graphically talking, Beat Saber on Quest has been visibly turned down a couple of notches—the whole lot is a bit of blockier and fewer shiny—nevertheless it’s in any other case the very same core gameplay, interface, and many others.
The flexibility to deal with Beat Saber at Skilled+ problem is excellent news for Quest, which appears to be main the pack in inside-out monitoring efficiency amongst any standalone headset we’ve seen thus far.