Borderlands The Pre-Sequel – 3D Mobile VR

If you are looking to get into the world of virtual reality gaming and don’t want to spend a fortune, or just can’t wait for the consumer version of the Oculus Rift, you can put together your own highly affordable VR system. After all the current DK2 Oculus is actually using a mobile phone screen from Samsung, so using your own phone screen is pretty good too;

For this to work you will need some different pieces of software, unlike the Oculus, a mobile VR System works totally wirelessly and as a result there are some extra things you need to set up.

Streaming your game to the phone

Of course you can run native VR apps on your mobile, but these are few and far between, don’t have the same sense of immersion or gameplay.. AND they totally eat up your phone battery. So you will be wanting to play your PC games by offloading all of your game processing on to your gaming quality computer and have the video streamed directly to your mobile for your viewing pleasure.

In order to do this however you will need two things, an Nvidia Kepler graphics card and a free app on your Android phone called Limelight. Limelight allows any Android device the power of streaming PC games normally, reserved for the Nvidia Shields. There are a few other streaming applications, but Limelight is by far the most usable, lagless and just plain works really well over Wifi.
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.limelight&hl=en

Rendering your game in 3D Side by Side (SBS)

Now looking at your game in without any depth that 3D brings isn’t much fun, after why would you be looking at your game on a tiny 5″ screen? Well so you can see it in 3D of course! A lot of games don’t have built in 3D SBS support, as VR headsets are still a relatively new experience, so to get around this problem you have to use a middleware application to separate the game camera and render slightly different views for each eye. My personal favourite is TriDef, which you install on your gaming machine, pick the right profile for your game and start it from the game launcher.
http://www.tridef.com/

Head Tracking

We might be satisfied with 3D, but why not go for full immersion, using your phone’s built in gyroscopic motion sensors (IMU). Luckily with a mobile VR setup, your phone is where your eyes are, on your head! To do this, you can use the Android app Trinus Gyre. This for me is the easiest to setup and is compatible with TriDef enabled games.
http://oddsheepgames.com/?page_id=155

Launching games through TriDef

One of the quirks of game streaming is that it tends to crash out when you changing windows, to get around this and streaming your game in 3D, you can add a shortcut to TriDef in Nvidia Geforce Experience, which will then automatically launch your game in 3D (as seen in the video above). To do this, add your game to TriDef Ignition and right click the game to create a shortcut, then add this to the Geforce Experience.

An affordable 3D headset HMD

It seems now that every manufacturer is jumping on the affordable VR headset band wagon, Archos, countless crowd funded campaigns and startups and even Carl Zeiss. However it is possible to purchase the ColorCross HMD directly from China, in fact its such a popular choice that it is constantly being rebranded and sold for alot more. I purchased mine through Aliexpress for £16!

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  • loxai

    nice post 🙂
    Worth mentioning that users without GameStream support (i.e. no nvidia card) can still use Trinus Gyre built in streaming (not as fast yet, but getting better).
    On the other hand, I’d recommend Vireio as an alternative to Tridef (not as many games supported, but it’s free). Hopefully game devs will start including 3D SBS natively without the need for 3rd party software, like Crysis 2 or GZ3Doom do.

  • Rick

    This is great! but is there any software solutions for mac / iOS? as that’s the platform I am on.