KAT VR, the company behind the omni-directional KAT Walk VR treadmill, is back with a brand-new invention. Dubbed “KAT Loco,” the new product aims to decrease motion sickness and allow players to experience VR locomotion in smaller play areas. It’s currently seeking funding on Kickstarter.
Locomotion, spice, and everything nice
KAT VR examined the problems that plague the three current locomotion options: room scale, teleportation, and free locomotion. While room scale requires a large area and teleportation breaks immersion, free locomotion can result in nausea. To solve these issues, KATVR developed a new locomotion system. It uses decoupled head and body directions to more accurately mimic how movement works in the real world. You’re also able to move backwards, and you can walk, run, and stop moving instantly. KAT VR says this is due to Loco’s “low motion latency.”
The KAT Loco system is currently compatible with Steam VR, PlayStation VR, Oculus Home, and Viveport. Using it in your games, you can integrate a room-scale setup if you so choose. You can also strafe for help in first-person shooters, and turn on cruise control to move around larger play areas. Of course, if you’re interested in getting a workout, you’re not going to want to use this particular feature. An “anti-interference” algorithm system is in place to determine if your foot motion was accidental, as well.
Because of the simplicity of KAT Loco’s design, KAT VR says it doesn’t require maintenance and can be set up quickly. You can place it anywhere with a stable surface, and there is a Steam VR plugin to quickly integrate the system.
KAT VR says KAT Loco is currently compatible with all current free locomotion games. Support is planned for the future for more headsets including Oculus Quest and Vive Cosmo, as well as non-VR games in the future. Will we be able to freely move around in Soda Drinker Pro? Only time will tell. A Kickstarter to fund the project is running now.