VR Arcade Tips & Lessons Learned: Base Stations


October 3, 2017 | 2 min read

VR Arcade Tips & Lessons Learned: Base Stations

Upward VR co-owner, Will Stackable, offers tips on how to to start and run a successful VR Arcade.

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Rather read-through than watch? Transcript below!

[Begin Transcript]

Probably the single biggest headache you’re going to face starting an arcade is the lighthouse or the base station setup. I’m just going to say, it was a huge pain in the butt for us and we spent a lot of time figuring out the angles, making sure they didn’t overlap. Basically you’ve got these very rudimentary old school technologies. It’s an IR beam that projects 180 degree beam and it’s the same exact passive beam as your remote control’s putting out. It’s not the same as wireless, it’s not, it’s a pretty basic technology that then the headset is reading that infrared beam so the issue is is when you have this passive beam that’s being outputted in this 180 degree field, then if you have crossover between base stations then you have all kinds of interference and you get the classic blackout where their screen goes black or the floor just appears to be changing, height or all kinds of issues. Controllers floating around. It’s a really bad customer experience.

That has been by far, the biggest issue we faced in arcade since we launched, has been figuring out how to get all the stations in, in the compact space, ’cause obviously you want to maximize the number of stations that you have for your square footage, but doing that in a way where it’s laid out so that your light beams don’t, your lighthouses don’t interfere.

And part of how we’ve done that is putting multiple stations on just two base stations. You can actually, because they’re just passive beams, as long as you have a field of coverage, you can have as many vives in there, the vives are reading this passive signal so you could have, if you wanted, 10 stations in a row with just two stations. Most people don’t know that. The other way we’ve done it is traditionally vive tells you, HDC tells you, to set them up kiddie corner but you can actually set them both up on the same side so both pointing in towards the TV and that can help shield, let’s say the front half of your store from the back half and separate things off a little bit.

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