This VR Archery Demo Uses Vive Trackers For Realistic Handling

by Jamie Feltham • March 6th, 2019

VR will make Hawkeyes of us all. It feels like almost every VR game out there has an archery mechanic. And, to be fair, that’s with good reason; nocking up a virtual arrow feels great in a headset. But we bet it’d feel even better with this Vive Tracker demo.

VR developer Lluís García Lamora recently shared the below video. It offers a look at an R&D project for Visyon 360, a company that specializes in location-based VR installations. It’s a pretty simple concept. the player wields a real bow using a Vive Tracker. Released in 2017, the Tracker is essentially a VR puck with SteamVR sensors. It’s used to replicate real objects in the virtual world. In VR, the real bow’s movements are mirrored with the virtual one. It even detects when the user is pulling back on the string, allowing for a seamless archery experience.

For now the VR element is just a simple shooting gallery. The aim, according to Lamora, was to develop something that offered realistic haptic feedback for VR archery. As great as current VR archery games are, it does involve playing pretend a little. You can’t feel any resistance when you pull back on a virtual string, for example. That can make it hard to perceive just how far an arrow will fly when you let go.

It’s most likely destined for another location-based experience. We wouldn’t expect to be able to try it at home. Still, we’d love to give this integration a try in games like Apex Construct and Twisted Arrow.

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