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If you’re a gamer, the arrival of virtual reality headsets is probably incredibly exciting. But what’s all the fuss about, and is VR really all it’s cracked up to be?
What exactly is virtual reality and what’s so good about it?
If you search online for gift ideas for gamers, you’ll probably find that every list mentions a virtual reality headset. These innovative devices have hit the headlines in the past few months, and a growing number of people are converting to the virtual reality way of life. Virtual reality headsets and games take you to a parallel world. You’ll experience life in a different environment, which seems incredibly real thanks to powerful graphics and precision movement. When you put the headset on, you’ll be taken from your living room to a cave full of glowworms, a race track, a football stadium or even another galaxy.
VR isn’t just about gaming. It has a growing number of functions, including education and training, and health and dental care. Virtual reality has been used to help students hone their skills in medicine and dentistry for many years, and it’s also an increasingly popular treatment for patients suffering from anxiety, phobias, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The scope for VR is vast, and in years to come, it’s expected to be part and parcel of everyday life.
Gamers love virtual reality because the experience is intense, and you actually feel like you’re in that world. When you play a game normally, there’s an element of virtual reality, but it’s nothing like the experience you get when you use a VR headset. Everything is more real, and developers aim to target all the senses. You can also use VR headsets to watch movies. With this option, you get the chance to enjoy the experience of going to the movies in your own bedroom. You’ll get a 360-degree view, and you’ll feel like you’re actually in the film. There are already several VR films available online, and through portals like Netflix, and the market is set to grow rapidly.
I want to give it a try: what are my options?
If you’re keen to jump on the VR bandwagon and give it a try, there are various options to suit all budgets. At the cheaper end of the spectrum, you can use a very basic cardboard model, which links with your smartphone. At the other end, you’ll find sophisticated headsets that connect with consoles. If you’re not sure what to buy, it’s worth visiting a store, and trying some different options for size. It’s also advisable to read reviews and see what other users think. Do some research, compare brands and products, and set a budget.
If you haven’t tried virtual reality gaming yet, give it a whirl. You may think it’s the best thing since sliced bread, or you may wonder what all the fuss is about. Some die-hard gamers will always prefer traditional formats, but it’s always fun to give something different a try. You never know, you may be a convert.
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