Right now, the Oculus Rift Touch Bundle is on sale, for a very reasonable price, making high end VR much more accessible to the masses. Right now, the bundle is only 549CAD or 399USD, at a normal price of 679CAD or 499USD. This is a very competitive price especially considering the HTC Vives 1 149CAD or 799.99USD. This is kind of perplexing, why is the HTC Vive so much more expensive? It becomes even more confusing when you consider the better controllers of the Oculus and some people experiencing a lesser screen door effect. Really the only thing the Vive has up on the Oculus is more support from public figures, along with marginally better tracking. This becomes even more confusing if you consider the slight tracking problems of the Oculus can be fixed with a third sensor, at 79.99CAD or 59.99USD, keeping its price still far lower than its competitor. Enough of comparing the two headsets, onto the value of the bundle and if it’s a more realistic purchase for more people now.
The bundle includes an Oculus Rift headset, two touch controllers, two sensors, and seven free programs and games upon registration of the Oculus. We ordered the Oculus, since, well, I wanted one, and this gives us a better look at the value of the Oculus Rift bundle. The presentation of the headset was very nice, and you can see this on our social media pages. Upon taking it out of the box I quickly setup the sensors. Having done my research I knew that the sensors would be best placed on either side of my desk. After plugging everything in I rearranged the room to make space for it, then opened the Oculus software I had pre-downloaded, and, I received an error. After about half an hour of troubleshooting it turned out the USB 3.0 extension cable I had used for the farther sensor was not compatible, so watch out for that, not all USB hubs, and other accessories will work. After this problem was resolved I was greeted with some health and safety warning, and then a surprisingly delightful tutorial which intuitively teaches how some concepts work in VR. This tutorial was impressive, despite being just a tutorial. Although I had no high-end VR experience before this.
The controllers feel good in my hands, and feel very natural. The headset is light, well balanced, and does everything it needs to quite well. The voice commands are surprisingly very good, despite the clumsiness and ineffectiveness of most voice command systems. The sensors are quite aesthetically pleasing, and do not take away from my setup in any way. Onto the included software, there are two drawing and modelling programs, and four games included. I know I said before there were seven programs included, and that’s because that is how they advertise it. However, one of the titles, Dragon Front is free for anyone. So, I don’t really count it as included, and this is a deceptive business practice in my opinion. I did not bother downloading this game since it can hardly be called included and will instead focus on the other programs.
The titles included are Lucky’s Tale, Dead and Buried, Robo Recall, Toybox, Quill, and Medium. I am going to briefly cover them now, but will be releasing more in-depth reviews for some of these titles later, along with some other titles. Robo Recall is a stunning first-person shooter, that showcases what VR can do amazingly well, I enjoyed this game very much. Lucky’s Tale is a platformer game with nice scenery, and incorporated VR elements. I felt sick the first time playing it, but on the second time I sat down, and felt fine the entire time playing it. Dead and Buried is an online first-person shooter, I only have played one match of this as of yet. In this one match, I had a lot of fun, but I was unable to understand my teammates to any cohesive amount, as they were Russian. I fear this may be an indication to the general player base for this game, making it very difficult to communicate. Toybox is just a small little “game” that I think is supposed to get you used to any concepts in VR the tutorial did not show you, and will likely be what I use to get anyone used to VR. Oculus Medium is a 3D modelling program, with a lot of tutorials built in, I myself am not very artistic, although I can see someone who is making very good use of this app. The same goes for Quill, which is very similar only it’s drawing instead of modelling.
While playing games in the Oculus Rift, I only felt sick once, and this was fixed by simply sitting down. Your mileage may vary though because I have heard of some people being led to get violently sick. The tracking is good, the interface is good, and the Guardian System is effective. My biggest gripes, and these are not the fault of Oculus, is how bad, Steam VR is, at least in comparison to the Oculus software while using an Oculus. I was able to fix many problems with a plugin. Not to mention the countless games which do not feature Oculus support on Steam, but then are sold in the Oculus store. The headphones are good enough for what they are needed for, and they swivel and pivot on every imaginable plain, meaning you’d have to have a pretty deformed head for them to not fit you. I praised how much I love the Rifts controllers earlier, but they are not without flaw. I will never understand why companies think putting this fingerprint magnet plastic on surfaces that will be touched often is a good idea. For Christs sake, right on the top of the controllers?!?
So, at the end of the day, do I recommend the Oculus Rift Touch Bundle? The answer is with the massive price difference, especially with this sale, absolutely, yes. This recommendation should not come without the consideration of some of the points I spoke about in this article though.
In addition everyone often focuses on the more interesting system requirements like a 970 or greater, 8GB of RAM or more, and i5-4590. Don’t forget about the less interesting but just as important requirements like at least three USB 3.0 ports, that often do not work with some USB accessories. If you do meet the requirements, and you’ve been wanting a VR headset, I don’t think there has really been a better time, so go wild. Click the above photo to buy one for yourself.