I’m going to be entirely honest and admit that I was not entirely sure what to expect when I was assigned to go cover a company called GameFace. As soon as I stepped into the demo cubicle, surrounded by sensors and third party virtual reality visors, I had to laugh. Of course that’s what a company called GameFace was all about! Virtual reality is currently at an odd place: bulky computer rigs and sensors are currently the industry standard, and this also happens to be an industry which has not yet found its groove. At the same time, without having fully found its feet, VR is already heading mobile. GameFace Labs are looking having their cake and eat it too, creating visors which are compatible with the current VR market, largely on Vive and Oculus games, while still looking towards the future, making those same visors mobile VR friendly.
While I was not able to dive into full VR games, I was able to test out the new GF-LD model headset, a hybrid device which runs both SteamVR support and Lighthouse. Donning the visor, I stepped into a proof of concept room, allowing me to move about the space and explore a set of decorative objects. While there wasn’t anything truly stunning about the room itself, the concept itself was promising: The GF-LD headsets work with your PC-driven SteamVR, allowing you to take advantage of Steam’s full VR library, while still using that same headset to enjoy both untethered Android VR content and Google Cardboard content.
While I was not provided a price point, I was able to take a look at a more consumer-friendly, slimmed-down version GameFace has under development, the GF-DD. This model will be lighter than the GF-LD, come at a lower price point, and will be available by late 2017, whereas its more robust GF-LD cousin is expected to hit the market mid 2018. If you’re looking to make the leap into VR, want to experience the widest range of games possible, and are willing to stray away from the big two name brand makers, GameFace visors may be just the thing for you. If you are a developer interested in integrating positional tracking into your Android VR projects, you can contact GameFace Labs to receive a plugin, documentation and support. You can learn more about the GameFace visors at their website, where you can also sign up to receive an early dev kit.