Opinion: Exclusivity Deals Could Virtually Kill Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality is barely off its feet, and already many developers are being forced into exclusivity deals just to meet funding goals. What does this entail for the future of virtual reality? And how does it affect the growing user base? 

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Virtual Reality is on the up-and-up--at least that’s what we’d like to think. Sadly, head-mounted-display developers like HTC and Oculus haven’t really released any sales numbers, possibly because they’re lower than they'd hoped. But that doesn’t mean that fully immersive gaming and entertainment doesn’t have a future. In fact, the future is pretty bright for virtual reality. Already things like AltSpaceVR are taking the spotlight, making it easier than ever to interact with others in a virtual social environment. And even more applications which really live off of the social interaction capable with VR are springing up each day. But exclusivity deals are starting to loom over the burgeoning medium and could spell trouble.

Oculus is probably one of the most known companies for their exclusivity deals. Games like Lucky’s Tale and Insomniac Game’s Lovecraftian horror, Edge of Nowhere, wouldn’t be possible without Oculus, and Facebook, to back them up. Insomniac is already working hard on a new PVP-focused game, The Unspoken, which I had the chance to check out last week at E3. The problem with virtual reality, is that development is expensive. Not only do you have to have an engine that can run well in virtual reality, but you also have to have access to the tools and hardware that you need to effectively craft something in it.

That’s where exclusivity comes into play. Now, most of these exclusivity deals, aside from some like Edge of Nowhere, are timed exclusives, which means they’ll eventually support access with any HMD. But what happens if these exclusivity deals take a more standard model akin to console exclusives? Not only would the market become fractured, but the entire concept of virtual reality entertainment would suddenly become even more complicated.

Publishers need to exercise caution if continuing to take exclusivity arrangements, because they run the severe risk of undermining their own long-term goals. Yes, virtual reality is really expensive to buy into. Yes, you need a really high-quality system to run it. But in the end, virtual reality opens a new door for immersive content unlike anything we’ve ever seen before. It allows you to gather in a room with friends and strangers who live thousands of miles away, all while allowing you to feel like you’re closer than ever. But in the end, virtual reality isn’t a new platform for gaming or entertainment. It’s simply a new way to enjoy the things we already love and enjoy. That’s why these exclusivity deals make no sense from a consumer standpoint.

Yes, sometimes these deals are made so that the developers can guarantee funding for their game. And yes, many of these products might not ever see the light of day if it weren’t for these deals. But that doesn’t change the fact that these companies are basically making exclusivity deals for more immersive peripherals. Because, when you really get down to the basics of it all, virtual reality headsets are nothing more than immersive monitors and controllers. They aren’t complete systems that run off of their hardware. They are add-ons that help to immerse the consumer into their media even more. 

So, should developers just not make their game instead of taking exclusivity deals? Of course not. But the blame for this exclusivity practice really falls on the HMD developers. In a recent email correspondence, Gabe Newell said, "We don't think exclusives are good for customers or developers." He then went on to say that Valve is more than happy to absorb the financial risks that smaller developers have with virtual reality projects. He also said that Valve will allow developers to "develop for the Rift or PlayStation VR, or whatever the developer thinks are the right target VR systems. Our hope is that by providing that funding that developers will be less likely to take on deals that require them to be exclusive."

This is the direction that the virtual reality market needs to take. By doing this, Valve is giving developers an open-ended road to travel down. They are saying, "Hey, we have faith in this new technology, we will provide the funds, you provide the product. Develop it how and where you want." This is huge for VR, because it removes the idea of exclusivity deals, and opens up the door for more developers to make their first steps into the virtual reality market. The other option is to take the Oculus route and bind your product to a single HMD. Not only does this hurt your consumer base, but it also limits application sales, and in the end could mean the difference between life and death for a developer.

Just imagine, if you will, that a sweet new game is getting ready to hit the market. Then you find out that the game only supports mouse and keyboard configurations made by Logitech. This means anyone sporting a Razer, Corsair, or any other brand of keyboard, would be unable to play the game unless someone created a hack, or the developers later worked in a hotfix to allow play with other components. This is basically what exclusivity with virtual reality headsets is. It’s just a blatant attempt to rally in content to push their own devices on the consumer. Which brings me to my next point.

Virtual Reality isn’t a hot seller. The buy-in cost is way too much right now, and that’s pushing a lot of people away. Will prices go down as new iterations are made? Of course. This is just the first generation of tech we’re seeing. As time goes on, and new advancements are made, these things will become cheaper to engineer, thus moving those cheaper prices on to the consumer. But what if it is never given the chance to make it that far? What if virtual reality dies before it really even gets started?

That’s why these exclusivity deals get made. Head-mounted-display companies want to push their product on the consumer. They want to make it the best that it can be, and that includes offering up the best amount of content available to the public. Which is why companies like Oculus are pushing for these exclusivity deals the way they are. It’s an attempt to bolster product sales. All in all, you can’t fault the developer for simply trying to make their product better. What happens when those attempts begin to hurt the very economy of the device that they are pushing forward?

In the end virtual reality headsets are just another peripheral. Until they offer self-contained modules to run the HMDs, this is all that they will be. Making content exclusive to a computer peripheral is not the way to push this industry forward. If virtual reality is meant to go mainstream, as many hope it will, it has to be open to anyone and everyone. The more hoops you put in place for people to jump through, the harder it will become to convince them of the fidelity of the product you are offering.

Right now the virtual reality industry suffers from lack of content and high buy-in. But, most importantly, VR suffers from the mainstream idea that it doesn’t bring anything new to the table. That it won’t change the way you view entertainment or media. Adding more hoops to the process won’t change that, and if Oculus and HTC aren’t careful, PlayStation VR just might steal their spotlight when it releases later this year.

Guides Editor

Joshua holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Creative Writing and has been exploring the world of video games for as long as he can remember. He enjoys everything from large-scale RPGs to small, bite-size indie gems and everything in between.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    June 21, 2016 2:30 PM

    Josh Hawkins posted a new article, Opinion: Exclusivity Deals Could Virtually Kill Virtual Reality

    • reply
      June 21, 2016 2:59 PM

      These platform wars just drive me further away from an immediate purchase. If there was a standard where everyone agreed on what was best, I would probably jump in sooner!

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      June 21, 2016 3:07 PM

      No, no deals happening at all would kill VR. VR fans should simply be glad that there is so much money being pumped into that industry. If you can afford a monster PC and one of the headsets, sorry, you are also very likely to be able to afford the other headset. I'd recommend waiting for PSVR if you are still uncertain what platform to go with.

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      June 21, 2016 3:28 PM

      How does this differ from what happens with consoles?

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        June 21, 2016 4:14 PM

        It's different because once you have a console, you don't have to worry about being segmented out. you have a platform or you don't. want to play PS4? buy one and you're in. If you want VR, you'll buy Sony's set, and be able to play any and every VR game released for it.

        PC is the same in that respect. if two people have a game, they can play it together. the PC is its own platform, just as the PS4 and Xbox are.

        There aren't many games that require both A) a significant investment in hardware, and B) hardware that will only ever be compatible with that specific game. even the music games from years back supported each other's hardware. it was better for both companies that way.

        Now people are being asked to spend $500 - $1000 on headsets (on top of high-end gaming PCs) that may not even play certain games. that would absolutely not happen on consoles.

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          June 21, 2016 5:49 PM

          But on console you have Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft exclusive titles. On these new VR devices you potential have exclusive titles.

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            June 21, 2016 5:52 PM

            It's not like you can play Mario games on your playstation without an unapproved method. The same holds true for exclusive titles on those platforms. Oculus and Vive are competing platforms. I don't see how the cost of entry has any barring. Expensive consoles have existed just as much as expensive VR gear and requirements.

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              June 21, 2016 5:56 PM

              the counterargument is going to be that the specific hardware device that dictates exclusivity matters (in this case CPU/GPU/etc vs a display and sensors and software stack) but I don't think it's a particularly strong position, even more so in a console era where they're on the same architecture, with the same GPU provider, etc.

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                June 21, 2016 5:58 PM

                Exactly. You've had cross platform games on consoles forever. Even when architecture differences where harder to overcome. You want to know why you can't play Halo on your Playstation? Because Microsoft thinks it's a good business decision, and they may very well be right.

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              June 21, 2016 6:08 PM

              the point you're missing is that VR games for oculus or vive are already exclusives... to PC. It's already a platform. there will be some games that show up on PS4, and vice-versa.

              the difference here is on PlayStation, if there were 3 different VR options for PS4, you can damn well bet every game would work with every option. If it didn't, people would be fuming, and have every right to be.

              The only difference here is that the PC has always been an open platform for gaming. Oculus is breaking form.

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                June 21, 2016 6:19 PM

                platforms are built on top of one another all the time. There're numerous major platforms on top of Windows with exclusive software and content.

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                  June 21, 2016 6:43 PM

                  Which of those platforms is not free to download and install?

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                    June 22, 2016 1:40 AM

                    From the top of my head based mainly on the work that I do:

                    Visual Studio for anything commercial
                    Autodesk MotionBuilder
                    Autodesk Maya
                    Vicon Blade
                    Qt for anything not open-source
                    All the proprietary platforms we've developed in-house

                    Platforms abound in software development and pretty much all of them are built on lower platforms. Not all of them are freely available.

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                      June 22, 2016 1:42 AM

                      Also practically any game engine that isn't Unity, Unreal, or Cryengine.

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                June 21, 2016 6:21 PM

                it's somewhat ironic to be defending Sony for having a closed platform and not allowing open innovation while simultaneously lambasting Oculus for taking advantage of the features that an open platform allows

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                  June 21, 2016 7:40 PM

                  where did I defend Sony? I stated a fact about how Sony and MS license peripherals.

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                    June 21, 2016 7:41 PM

                    you said people would be mad if PS4 had multiple VR solutions, implying they're happy there's only one

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                      June 21, 2016 7:43 PM

                      people would be mad if there were multiple VR solutions that locked them into specific games

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                June 21, 2016 7:00 PM

                PC IS NOT A PLATFORM! It is in a sense that we use it generically here to refer to a place to play games, but a notebook or desktop computer is not in itself a platform. Steam would be a platform running on Windows, Linux, and OSX. How about Origin? Want to download Mass Effect 3 or Dead Space 3 from Steam? You can't. Because EA decided for business purposes that they weren't interested in that.

                Platform exclusivity has been happening on PC and consoles forever. This happening with VR is a foregone conclusion. These devices and the companies that back them are in competition to get their product to as many people as they can. A good way to do that is to incentivise software running on one platform (theirs), and completely excluding it from the other (their competition).

                Sometimes it works out good for us consumers. Other times it doesn't. Right now it's too early to tell. But these two fighting and wanting to have exclusive content ensures that there will actually be content AND they'll actively seeking it out, and quite possibly funding it.

                I can't imagine publishers wanting to make VR games right not. It's expensive, and the audience you can sell to is so tiny. Facebook footing some or all of that bill at least means something will be made.

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                  June 21, 2016 7:08 PM

                  A good way to do that is to incentivise software running on one platform (theirs), and completely excluding it from the other (their competition).
                  Good for them, bad for us. They're avoiding the need to actually create better or cheaper hardware or services. It's incredible how easily you people fall for it.

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                    June 21, 2016 7:18 PM

                    That's a possibility, but not a fact. You're trying to argue right now that they could make better and or cheaper hardware, and I don't think that's the case. Exclusives don't have any impact on that right now. In the future would could see a better product that no one is using because the crappy one has better exclusives. That could totally happen, and very well might.

                    Still doesn't change that it's no different from what's been happening on consoles, and no one seems to be getting nearly as upset at the fact that you can't play Halo on PS4. Rather they got upset when you COULD play Quantum Break on PC. My guess is that's just been the expectation, and folks have to come to accept it. Where as with VR because it is comparatively more expensive and people seem to think it's this fragile technology that'll fall into an abyss and never be heard from again that it should be handled differently. Unfortunately all the same rules apply.

                    Honestly if you look at these two product in their current state, and what software for VR is. There isn't much separating these two. If they want to create a big gulf, an easy way to do that is to have exclusive content. I"m not saying I support or love the idea, but it really is just business.

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                      June 21, 2016 7:32 PM

                      I don't give a shit about consoles or what console fans are cool with. As this issue clearly highlights, people can be rather dumb. Xbox people identify with the brand and get upset about PC getting some of their games? Yeah bringing that attitude to PC is a super great thing for sure.

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                    June 21, 2016 7:20 PM

                    how do you reconcile this opinion with the nature of the console market? Has there not been better and cheaper hardware and services when those exclusive platforms are forced to compete?

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                      June 21, 2016 7:35 PM

                      Just the opposite. By capturing their audience they face reduced competition compared to any company active in the PC space and as a result, consoles are worse at almost everything.

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                  June 22, 2016 1:42 AM

                  PC is a platform insomuch as it refers to the modern iteration of an intel-based system. More specifically we usually mean that it also runs Windows. Windows is also a platform. So is PC, so is Steam. These things are built on top of each other and each is a platform.

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                    June 22, 2016 10:20 AM

                    PC just means personal computer. Things like the smartphone in your pocket, as well as desktop, notebooks, and tablets all fall into this category, and as you've brought up the software running on them impact that as well. Because the PC "platform" is so broad calling it a platform in this discussion can make it hard to understand exactly what a person is referring to.

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                      June 22, 2016 12:55 PM

                      Did you read my first sentence at all? I pretty clearly limited what I meant when I referred to "PC" to what the general usage of that term means today.

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                        June 22, 2016 12:56 PM

                        As for the distinction between desktops and notebooks, I don't think that's a distinction worth making in this context. Tablets may be but only because they're more likely to be running mobile chipsets which would indeed set them apart.

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                          June 22, 2016 12:57 PM

                          Finally "platform" is not an ill-defined concept. It's just that people who don't know anything about computer science/engineering think it means "console of choice" or something similar when in reality it's much more broad.

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                June 21, 2016 7:02 PM

                I don't see an OSX or Linux version of most games. Seems like they're just Windows exclusives. Quantum Break and Halo coming to a Linux machine near you? I doubt it. At least not if Microsoft has to make it happen.

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        June 21, 2016 4:17 PM

        The pc has been hardware agnostic for quite a long time until this nonsense (if anyone mentions glide APIs I swear to god...)

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          June 21, 2016 5:00 PM

          lol I intentionally avoided Glide in my post above yours. they tried so hard...

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          June 21, 2016 5:52 PM

          What does the PC breaking form have to do with games being platform exclusive. This has been going on for a LONG time.

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        June 21, 2016 4:34 PM

        it doesn't. Why is no one complaining about how PSVR might kill VR by bifurcating the medium?

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          June 21, 2016 5:53 PM

          I've no idea. It's why I asked the question to begin with. I don't see how this is any different than what platform holders have been doing forever.

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            June 21, 2016 5:57 PM

            it isn't, it's the standard means of bootstrapping a hardware platform, people just haven't seen it on PC in so long because Windows dominated the world so hard for so long that Windows exclusive (vs Mac and Linux) doesn't even register as a fact about most PC games.

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        June 21, 2016 5:07 PM

        The wounds are fresher, so it's easier to cry.

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        June 21, 2016 6:43 PM

        Consoles are proprietary from top to bottom. The difference is a PC is not a console. It's a bunch of interchangeable components of any brand that when put together, do the same thing as when you had chosen other brands. Whatever your choice, you can run everything. This is what you want as a consumer. As a consumer, you should not concern yourself with the plight of the poor company that does $20,000,000,000 revenue per year.

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          June 21, 2016 7:28 PM

          as a consumer it's in my interest that the content I like to consume is profitable to produce

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            June 21, 2016 7:37 PM

            Then you would want to create the largest installbase. Yet you argue for smaller ones.

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              June 21, 2016 7:44 PM

              if I sell hardware at cost with the intention of making a profit on its software then it's not really in my interest to enable a situation where someone else can take all the software profits I'm relying on to justify my hardware investment. That would be an awfully risky business strategy, potentially so risky that it wouldn't be undertaken, which would be bad for me the consumer who wants to enjoy the software that would've resulted.

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                June 21, 2016 7:52 PM

                Circular think much? If you want profits through software, then build the software. How would someone else take those profits? The only way your logic works is if this content on this hardware agnostic Oculus Home just isn't good enough. If it is as good as you assume, then people will buy it.

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                  June 21, 2016 8:00 PM

                  How would someone else take those profits?

                  by eating 30% of my software revenue with their store rake

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                    June 21, 2016 8:01 PM

                    Why would they put it on Steam?

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                      June 21, 2016 8:02 PM

                      because we're in an open platform utopia where everything is easily available everywhere and no one has made exclusives and everything competes only on its merits

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                        June 21, 2016 8:04 PM

                        Right so why would they put it on Steam?

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                        June 22, 2016 12:34 AM

                        The game can still be available only on the oculus store. The difference being that vive owners should be able to play games they purchase from the oculus store. Right now they can't

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            June 21, 2016 8:52 PM

            as a consumer it's in my interest that the content I like to consume is profitable to produce inexpensive to purchase
            I got you, fam.

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              June 21, 2016 8:53 PM

              inexpensive to purchase but unprofitable just means I'll have no content to buy eventually

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                June 21, 2016 8:57 PM

                From THAT company.

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                  June 21, 2016 9:14 PM

                  from any company for which that is true. As a consumer I'm not simply concerned about getting whatever price is cheapest for me right now because that ignores long term consequences of those prices.

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                    June 21, 2016 10:29 PM

                    I think it would be good to separate consumer, and what 'we' hobbist want for the long term enjoyment of our hobby :)

                    As consumers we tend to want the lowest price at that moment in time we're willing to purchase. As hobbiest we want are hobby to grow and be awesome until we just don't care about said hobby.

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                      June 21, 2016 10:29 PM

                      Not to say that these two things to share a relationship in this instance.

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        June 21, 2016 8:06 PM

        consoles have actual content worth purchasing the hardware for.

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      June 21, 2016 4:16 PM

      Very good article and I agree completely. Hardware on exclusivity on PC is gross.

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        June 21, 2016 4:42 PM

        It's not just hardware though, both valve and oculus are writing a ton of software, and they can't wait around for standards. Vr isn't just transforms on your camera and controllers

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      June 21, 2016 4:33 PM

      In other news, water is wet.

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      June 21, 2016 4:39 PM

      I don't see the big deal, they're paying the devs for timed exclusives. They're acting as a first party dev. Noone is making big bucks on this stuff yet, and vr desperately needs content

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        June 21, 2016 5:04 PM

        ^^^this

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        June 21, 2016 5:57 PM

        The timed exclusivity is only for third party developers. First party games arent timed exclusives.

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        June 21, 2016 6:03 PM

        Is it really making more content though? Seems like most of the games already existed.

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          June 21, 2016 6:52 PM

          This is my main beef with it. Quite a few titles that are now timed exclusives were already far into development on the Vive, with either playable betas or even had an upcoming release date. I totally understand wanting upfront money for development, but don't turn around and act like it wouldn't be possible without Oculus or that it's going to take months to port it to Vive.

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            June 21, 2016 7:42 PM

            The kind of stuff that's coming for the vive isn't generally a finished product. If oculus gives them money and they can keep working to bring it up to the level oculus expects their studios to get to, then that's a good thing. If they keep their original schedule and just come out for touch instead of vive for a few months, then yeah that's shady biz but at least it's cash in hand for the devs.

            All this being said, I'm a much bigger fan of the way valve and steam have worked as a product, and I'm fine with the tech demo mini games. If it works out that valve and openvr are android to oculus' apple, that's ok.

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              June 21, 2016 7:57 PM

              That's a good point. If they buy the game and that allows them to elevate it above a tech demo, that benefits gamers.

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          June 21, 2016 10:54 PM

          This is what makes it different. In one case, the deal was done after the game had already sold as part of a humble bundle! In most cases the games have been a fair way along in development and the funds, while very nice I'm sure, are not critical for the game's release. This is quite different than what we have traditionally thought of as "console exclusives" like first party Nintendo games, Sony titles like Uncharted or Bloodborne, etc.

          If I get a headset, it will be a Vive, not because the Rift is trash but I slightly prefer the Vive in a few ways. I nearly got one at release but balked at the price and available games. Oculus isn't making me want a Rift more, they are making me want a Vive (and therefore any VR headset) less. I'm not going to go with the vendor that is buying games away from the competition, and if owning a Vive makes me a second class VR citizen, I'm probably not going to do it at that price point either.

          Gabe Newell is right, trying to use zero-sum tactics in a nascent market is extremely risky and stupid for Oculus. They should understand that if VR succeeds, even the second place finisher will do very well and could be the first place finisher at the next hardware refresh. (And let's face it, it's basically a tie in these first gen devices.) However, if they secure first place in a stifled VR marketplace, everyone loses including Oculus.

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            June 22, 2016 12:05 AM

            They should understand that if VR succeeds, even the second place finisher will do very well and could be the first place finisher at the next hardware refresh

            This depends on if one views the market as more like consoles, more like PCs, or more like social networks. In the 2nd and 3rd cases there's a future where winner takes all.

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              June 22, 2016 6:06 AM

              It's quite possible that VR could develop into a winner-take-all marketplace but I find it somewhat unlikely. I think VR hardware will develop a lot like other peripherals. If anything, VR hardware resembles racing wheels or HOTAS more than anything else I can think of. But I think it would be extremely unlikely that VR would both succeed and grow rapidly and become winner-takes-all in one generation, so the strategy I proposed still makes sense. The only ways Facebook loses by taking the strategy I propose is either if VR is doomed regardless or if VR is so inevitable that cynical market strategies won't significantly impact the early shape of the market. I guess they are banking on the latter but I don't find either of those possibilities likely.

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          June 21, 2016 11:06 PM

          Yes, and if it doesn't sell well, the dev is doomed. Oculus takes that risk away so that the devs can stay profitable and keep developing for VR. And if Oculus business gets nothing for it, why should they keep doing that. They get something for it, the devs get something for it. It's good for VR. People buying Vive knew full well what they were getting.

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      June 21, 2016 4:42 PM

      virtuality

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      June 21, 2016 6:00 PM

      This isn't different than how Nintendo got exclusives for the NES in the 80's in order to improve quality. There's a lot of pretty lame VR games out their trying to cash in but few good ones in between. If the good ones all 3nd up on one platform even for a short period being released in continuous rates, then that platform becomes the more attractive option and this the defacto standard.

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        June 21, 2016 6:14 PM

        Except Nintendo quickly became dictatorial in how it controlled content. Developers had to order cartridges from Nintendo; publishers could only put out so many games per year, leading to studios like Konami creating dbas to circumvent the rule.

        I'm not saying VR and NES production are equivalent. I'm saying companies can let control extend too far.

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      June 21, 2016 6:15 PM

      Opinion: Some say cucumbers taste better pickled

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        June 21, 2016 6:57 PM

        Bro, we're stating opinions, not facts.

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      June 21, 2016 7:45 PM

      I wonder how Carmack feels about all this drama.

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        June 21, 2016 10:58 PM

        My guess is he doesnt give a crap because he's not a man baby.

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          June 22, 2016 6:17 AM

          You don't have to be a man-baby to see that the company you work for might be compromising its sales and future.

          Then again, Facebook's pockets are deep.

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            June 22, 2016 7:15 AM

            I don't think he's worried about sales.

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            June 22, 2016 10:31 PM

            No, legit concerns are fine, but as so often with video games concerns seem to quickly turn to vitriol.

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      June 22, 2016 12:42 AM

      I think this exclusivity stuff is about as dangerous to VR as proprietary APIs were to the beginning of 3d cards

      which is to say, not very, but certainly annoying for consumers and done away with quickly as soon as they become a huge inconvenience for developers

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        June 22, 2016 4:39 AM

        I am probably going to avoid VR until a standard forms. I have no interest in owning more than one of these headsets or having to run unapproved software wrappers. A VR headset is just a display with some motion tracker.

        I bet you if took the risk out of buying the "wrong" headset people would be more willing to make the jump. Remember all the HD-DVD and Bluray Wars and all the studio exclusivity none-sense where half the films were ported for one or the other. It slowed adoption quite a bit as people just waited out the clear winner.

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          June 22, 2016 5:01 AM

          There is no wrong headset.

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            June 22, 2016 7:15 AM

            Well if vive ends up like betamax then yes there is...$1150cdn is a tough pill to swallow with that much uncertainty. Besides gen2 headsets will probably come out about the same time as real games.

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              June 22, 2016 7:24 AM

              Hopefully in the case of the Vive, Gen2 headsets will be just that, and be able to make use of all the existing equipment like the lighthouses, controllers, and hub.

              As far as Betamax, I think it's going to be a little harder to fall into that gap since, as far as I understand, anyone who makes a game for Vive has automatically also made their game for Oculus. Also, since all of these games are digital releases there's no real investment along the lines of having to press Oculus "CDs" or Vive "CDs."

              I think they can coexist much like different game consoles if it comes down to that.

              However, if the major gaming studios start getting bought for exclusivity, it is worrisome. It will also be relatively cheap to do since I seriously doubt Valve is going to pay any outside publishers for exclusivity.

              The consumer's perspective may point towards the Oculus because not only are they getting Oculus exclusives, but all or most Vive games as well.

              Still a lot of uncertainty, but I think the two are going to be able to co-exist for a few more generations.

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        June 22, 2016 8:52 AM

        Exactly, since Steam is compatible with all headsets, none of the exclusivity stuff will matter in the end. I keep hearing people say that Oculus is "locking" consumers into their platform, except consumers with a Rift are free to buy games on Steam (though having to enable it in the settings is stupid).

        Once the exclusivity stuff ends, or at least mostly goes away, there will be even fewer reasons to buy from Oculus Home. Eventually I could see Oculus make it easier for Rift owners to access Steam, since at a certain point the "allow untrusted" option is pointless if they are making all their money off headsets.

        Either way I can't wait for the VR wars bullshit to end.

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      June 22, 2016 7:45 AM

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