The game which Oculus CTO John Carmack cited as his “quest” to bring to virtual reality is already available on the “Oculus Powered” Samsung Gear VR platform, but despite that version appearing back in April, desktop users were left wondering when they’d see the promised VR support appear in the Windows 10 version.
Well it looks to be ready to drop soon as a recent blog post from Minecraft developer Mojang, who was acquired by Microsoft back in 2014 for a reported $2.5Bn, has stated that they expect Oculus Rift support to be “turned on” in the “coming weeks”, marking the first time the game has officially appeared on the platform.
Minecraft however is no stranger to VR, becoming a firm VR fan favourite in the modded VR version known as Minecrift way back in the days of the Oculus Rift DK1 and on the HTC Vive courtesy of the excellent Vivecraft for a few months now. In actual fact, despite it’s retro-minimalist production design, Minecrift gave VR players a glimpse at the scale and majesty made possible through via the medium.
“Minecraft is a game that you can both figuratively and literally lose yourself in,” Carmack says, “In fact, my strongest memories of being inside VR are from the time I’ve spent exploring Minecraft on Gear VR. Experiencing it in virtual reality changes it from an abstract activity to a visceral one – it goes from a sense of playing the game to one of being inside your world, and spinning around to find a creeper sneaking up on you leaves a powerful impression. Infinite worlds have been explored, shaped, and shared by millions of people, and now in VR; that sounds a bit like the fabled Metaverse.”
The Oculus Rift version is expected to be largely the same as the current Gear VR version, which addresses nausea concerns over first person, joypad/trackpad controlled locomotion by including both the original “more intense” first person mode and a new ‘comfort mode’ which presents the action on a virtual screen within a neat Minecraft-inspired living room of sorts.