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This article was published on May 7, 2019

Sony’s proposed full-body gyroscope controller for VR looks incredibly fun

Sony’s proposed full-body gyroscope controller for VR looks incredibly fun

Sony recently filed a patent for a VR-related input device that, were the company to make it, would potentially allow you to strap yourself into a gyroscope and spin around in a sphere with total freedom.

The patent request, which you can have a gander at here, details a “a posture control system containing a posture control unit that changes a direction of a user’s body and a display unit mounted on a user’s head.”

The document’s language further indicates this mechanism is like a ride you would strap yourself into:

According to this embodiment, it is assumed that the drive unit is able to turn the seat on each of the three rotational axes mutually intersecting at right angles. To be specific, the drive unit turns the seat on each of the X axis, Y axis, and Z axis.

This sounds a bit more like a theme park or VR arcade ride than something you’d end up putting in your home. But the only image attached to the patent filing looks like such an incredibly cool concept, we can’t help but daydream about the possibility it’ll one day end up in our game rooms:

The right support and tethering system could allow players to use the gyroscope as an input device to control virtual versions of themselves by leaning – sort of like riding a Segway. This would make gaming experiences such as skiing, skateboarding, or hovering incredibly immersive. And it’s not hard to imagine skilled players performing flips and spins to simulate the super hero experience. Of course, the device pictured in the image is obviously meant to be used from a seated position so it’s probably intended for experiences more akin to VR roller coaster rides – but we’ll leave all that to the engineers to figure out.

With the right price – somewhere around $1,000 to $2,000 seems like it could work — there’s a chance it could play out as a consumer gadget. And even though the pictured device is huge, many VR gamers prefer to play room-sized VR experiences already. We’re used to making space. Besides, do you really need a couch?

At the end of the day there’s no guarantee Sony intends on making this gadget at all. Patent filings are often just placeholders for possible future devices. But we sure hope it does. If for no other reason than the next Katamari game could be a revolutionary gaming experience.

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