VR Gun Controller Devkit ‘The Persuader’ Now Available for $199

by David Jagneaux • August 16th, 2016

If software platforms lived and died by their peripherals, the world would be a very different place. The Xbox Kinect, PS Move, and the awkward, but satisfying, N64 Rumble Pak all have very specific legacies. Now that we’re at the dawn of the age of VR, it’s time for a bunch of new peripherals.

From VRLA earlier this month, we reported on the existence of the ultra-realistic looking VR-15, a rifle made for the HTC Vive that holsters your controller and provides a realistic gun-toting experience. Now, on a similar note, Ilium VR is announcing the availability of its own gun controller, dubbed The Persuader. You can order devkits from their website, starting today, for $199.

As opposed to the pseudo-realism of the VR-15 we wrote about previously, The Persuader looks like a Tommy gun designed for a video game. The material itself reminds me of the guns I’d play with as a kid and the brightly colored buttons on the side make sure your brain isn’t too fooled by the lethal shape.

What makes The Persuader so nice is that the button attachment can actually be removed and configured, in addition to a joystick attachment, making it a great controller even for games that have you up and moving about. All you do is mount a Vive controller on the front and the gun handles the rest. There is also a drop-down magazine function, which can be mapped to initiate the reloading action in whatever game you are playing.

According to an official press release:

The Persuader is modeled after the classic Tommy gun, and is the first gun controller for virtual reality with realistic functionality—incorporating a drop-down magazine, haptic feedback, and a fire select switch. The Persuader also features a modular attachment system, allowing for quick swapping of buttons and attachments—making it ambidextrous.

The wireless controller, priced at $199, integrates with the HTC Vive via a mount on the barrel. Integration for headsets such as the Oculus Rift and OSVR are available exclusively to members of the Ilium VR Developer Program, which is by application or invite only. The functionality of the gun gives game developers tremendous freedom in creating their own immersive VR experiences.

Included with the kit are two starter demos: one, a desert zombie shooter and the other, an urban rooftop defense game. Software packages and tutorials with easy to use integrations for Unreal and Unity engines will also be available for download.

While the model available is technically the devkit, designed for early adopters and developers to get started on integrating the gun into their games, consumers are welcome to purchase units as well. You can try out the two starter demos and support for other software is already in the works for such big-name games like Grand Theft Auto V.

The Persuader can be purchased from the Ilium VR store for $199.

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  • DoubleD

    I am only going to buy a gun if it can simulate recoil.
    Otherwise it is just a piece of plastic to be placed around a vive controller.

    • Konchu

      This states it does Haptic ReCoil how good that is I cannot say haven’t used it.