I've seen lots of Oculus Rift-enabled games that offer players a glimpse (or more) inside immersive-looking spaceships and monster-infested hallways. The ideas that truly excite me, however, come from more experimental kinds of games that invite players to experience their own bodies from a new vantage point.
Daniel Ernst's The Shoebox Diorama does this in a particular artful way. The latest installment in this ongoing series, Der Grosse Gottlieb (Google tells me this translates to "The Great God-Loving"), situates the person wearing the headset atop a giant, teetering stack of chairs. As a video of the installation shows, they're also put on a slightly less menacing stack of chairs in real life too, with a fan blowing in their direction to simulate wind:
The "gameplay" part, by Ernst's description, sounds like it could rival the recently-released Mountain Simulator in terms of limited interactivity: people can look around, admire the scenery, even reach for the stars above. But they never quite reach them. That's all there is to it.
Ernst's first installment in The Shoebox Diorama, meanwhile, puts players inside a dystopian landscape that looks like a giant game of Tetris, slowly unfolding all around them:
I love seeing virtual reality projects like these because the seem like the rare sorts of experiences that actually play with the idea of reality in the game itself. Rather than just creating a realistic, albeit fantastical setting, Ernst's "dioramas" toy with visual logic to deceive and entice the player in unique ways.
His next diorama isn't finished yet, but he calls it The Pigeon Man and says it's "a magical realist, illustrative game." I'm intrigued.
via Kill Screen