The time is now 12:40 post meridiem on this day, September 30th, 2008. It occurred to me today, as it does on occasion, how very quickly the world is moving – technologically, that is. I can recall growing up in central New Mexico with a handful of friends on what seemed like the cusp of yet another technological spurt on humanity’s progress chart. I recall having one of the first video game consoles, the Atari. Then, Japan’s magnate, Nintendo, came on the scene with the most revolutionary system of the time, the Nintendo Entertainment System. It was an 8-bit system that either angered or seduced parents of the era’s youth. Super Mario Bros. was the game of games and there was no better time to be alive (as far as we, the youth of the times, were concerned). Then Zelda latched on and lured us deeper in to this abyss that we knew from which there would, most likely, be no return. We couldn’t have cared less.
Nintendo pioneered the gaming system industry and still maintains a solid grasp on the competition with their newest system, the Wii.
The gaming industry has since erupted and the current world of gaming (both on consoles and computers) is a veritable Atlantis compared to the bucolic beginnings of its predecessor. Every few years, every one of the gaming companies wants to out-perform the competition by (and not limited to) better graphics, better “fun-factor” The world of the future is clearly headed in the direction of virtual reality. Now, if you haven’t figured it out, I love video games. Love ‘em. I started to think today about how significant of a role VR (as it’s known colloquially) will in the future of gaming. I didn’t need to do a whole lot of research to come to the conclusion that the role will be bigger and better than just “significant.” VR will be the future of gaming. It’s gonna be a good thing and possibly a bad thing simultaneously.
As it stands now, the video game industry wants to improve their systems every year in one very heavy aspect, and that’s always graphics. It went from 2D to 3D in a short time and Nintendo, again, was the leader of the pack with that step. Virtual Reality will be 3-D at every angle, everywhere the user turns. That’s just the beginning. I see VR as having graphics that are not like video graphics at all, but graphics that are so real and life-like that people will want to stay in their world incessantly.
I see Virtual Reality as both a boon and a bane to the future of the world. The mock scenarios that will be able to be created are limitless, but the tendency for escape from reality and full enjoyment of life will be great. Something to think about.