With industry behemoths like Nvidia and AMD in a constant race to bring the most efficient graphics processing units (GPUs) to market, the hyper-competitive gaming industry has arguably produced some of the most groundbreaking—and profitable—tech startups this year.
The arrival of several consumer-grade virtual reality gaming units and new consoles on the wing from Nintendo and Sony make 2016 a groundbreaking year for gaming. The following are 13 amazing innovations for next level gaming and beyond.
The STEM System is a wireless motion tracking platform that gives players the ability to interact fluidly with games through constant, full-position and orientation tracking—regardless of whether you’re in front of your computer or in the middle of the living room.
As its name implies, TrackIR tracks head movements for use as input in games. Move your head to the right or left, and your in-game avatar will do likewise.
The Sentry Eye Tracker tracks eye movements for a smoother gaming experience and is a popular yet affordable option for gamers and streamers.
Whirlwind VR’s Vortex can control the air and temperature around a gamer for recreating effects and enhancing the gaming experience.
Introduced at the Game Developer Conference 2016, Pillo is a video game controller ideal for kids—or like-minded adults. The device works by squeezing/pressing the pillow and already has several supporting titles available.
MindMaze lets gamers play games with their minds using motion capture and electroencephalographic scans for interacting with a VR environment, sans controllers.
Powered by AMD, these new Sulon headsets are VR evolution in the making—the first tetherless, fully integrated VR system in the world. The headset has a full gaming PC inside: a Radeon R7 graphics card, AMD FX-8800P CPU, 8GB of memory, and a 256GB SSD running Windows 10.
Star Wars fans take note: Sabertron has created the first ever working lightsaber that includes an electronic scoring system and menu-driven LCD touchscreen.
Firsthand Technology’s innovative SnowWorld game uses VR gaming for pain and anxiety management in wound care and other hospital procedures. Designed for patients with burn injuries, its technology has proven to be highly effective in burn-related pain mitigation.
PrioVR enables natural, full-body interaction inside of virtual worlds with its innovative gaming suits. Donning one of these suits will allow you to move your body naturally and manipulate objects as if they were in front of you.
Cyberith has developed a technology that enables you to walk, run, and move side-to-side freely in every direction inside virtual worlds. Jumping, crouching and sitting are all possible with this device for optimal realism and immersion.
Currently a live Kickstarter campaign, KAT VR is developing what’s essentially an omni-directional treadmill for gaming. The 165 lb. device is narrow/foldable, sports a 40 inch diameter, and is crafted with aviation aluminum.
Berlin-based Hyve’s ICAROS is a virtual reality simulator specially designed to deliver VR flying experiences.
The gaming industry is a lucrative one; as such, many bleeding edge computing and technological advances in the space often make their way into other fields like healthcare and transportation. As these 13 innovations serve to illustrate, gaming has grown up—and delivers more than just a slot on the leaderboard.