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Minecraft Earth is coming – it will change the way you see your town

The Guardian

Six of us are huddled together in Cavendish Square Gardens in central London, fighting a horde of warrior skeletons. To passersby, however, we must look like a bunch of adults pointing our smartphones at nothing while shouting about incoming monsters. What we're doing is playing a beta version of Minecraft Earth, an augmented reality (AR) spinoff from the multimillion-selling block-building game – and very soon, parks all over the world will be filled with people just like us. This month, Minecraft is launching an early-access version of the game in a select few territories around the world, ahead of a global roll-out. Microsoft has yet to reveal exactly when and where, but soon thousands of fans used to playing on their console, PC or tablet, are going to be taking their creations to the streets.


High-speed 5G network seen as ready to give big boost to online gaming

The Japan Times

CHIBA – At this year's Tokyo Game Show, the big draw was next-generation 5G networking -- setting pulses racing with the prospect of a radically more immersive gaming experience. Offering data transmission speeds around 100 times faster than 4G, 5G is expected to enable more seamless imagery -- particularly lower latency, more vivid images -- and sharper motion. Industry experts say it will dramatically improve the quality of augmented and virtual reality games. "It was very smooth, responsive and consistent," said Omar Alshiji, a 23-year-old game designer from Bahrain, after trying out the fighting game Tekken at the NTT Docomo Inc. booth. The major mobile carrier installed 5G base stations at its booth this year, making the high-speed network available at the show.


High-speed 5G network seen as ready to give big boost to online gaming

The Japan Times

CHIBA – Next-generation 5G networking was the big draw at Tokyo Game Show 2019, setting pulses racing with the prospect of a radically more immersive gaming experience. Offering data transmission speeds around 100 times faster than 4G, 5G is expected to enable more seamless imagery with lower latency, more vivid images and sharper motion. Industry experts say it will dramatically improve the quality of augmented and virtual reality games. "It was very smooth, responsive and consistent," said Omar Alshiji, a 23-year-old game designer from Bahrain, after trying out the fighting game "Tekken" at the NTT Docomo Inc. booth at the four-day game show in Chiba. The major mobile carrier installed 5G base stations at its booth this year, making the high-speed network available at the show.


The Best Holiday Gifts to Give Gamers, According to Gamers

Slate

Finding the perfect holiday gift can be maddening (is this the color they'd want? Is it something they already have? Is it so last year?), but really, once you have a sense of a person's taste, it's not impossible. This season, we'll be talking to members of various tribes to find out exactly what to get that college student, or serious home cook, or boss (who has everything) in your life. Think of it as a window into their brain trust--or, at least, a very helpful starting point.


Disney VR experiment allows users to catch real objects

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Creating convincing virtual worlds which we can touch and feel was once just the dream of science fiction. But developments in VR technology over recent years could soon make this a reality. Now Disney has shown that existing technology can be used to achieve a very basic version of this effect - but it could unlock the door to further developments in the future. Disney's Research team in Los Angeles has created a system that allows users to catch a real ball based on a virtual image. Their simulation is powered by the Unity 3D game engine, which has been used to create computer games like Deus Ex: The Fall, Assassin's Creed: Identity and the Kerbal Space Program space flight simulator.


You can now experience The Legend of Zelda in virtual reality

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

The Legend of Zelda is one of the most beloved video games of all time. Known for its immersive worlds and colorful characters, it's a series I hold near and dear to my heart. Well, if you're a fan of the franchise, you can now explore the map from A Link to the Past in virtual reality. Have you ever wanted to stroll through the Lost Woods or take in the sights from atop Death Mountain? Well, now you can! Check out the town from Link's perspective or survey Hyrule from above.


Minecraft gets the full virtual reality treatment: Hit game lands for Oculus Rift ahead of the headset's UK launch

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Lovers of sandbox explorer game Minecraft will be able to lose themselves in its world of blocky graphics, as the game launches on the Oculus Rift. Global Xbox and PC users with the headset already playing the game will be able to get a free Windows 10 beta update to enter into the VR world. The game is one of the first big titles to launch on the much hyped Facebook-owned Oculus Rift, which is set for its European launch next month. Minecraft's developer, Mojang, trumpeted the game's arrival with an excited blog post: 'How's your face? Is it ready to have Minecraft right up in it?


Microsoft ships Windows 10 Minecraft for the Oculus Rift, promises it's less barfy

PCWorld

When Microsoft showed off Minecraft for the Oculus Rift last fall, the experience was quite realistic--and so was the nausea. On Monday, Microsoft said it's begun shipping the VR version of Minecraft to everyone, complete with two important tweaks that should help reduce VR vertigo. Microsoft began shipping a free update to Minecraft: Windows 10 Edition Beta on Monday that added VR support for the Oculus Rift. It's actually the second VR-specific update Microsoft and developer Mojang have released for Minecraft, following the Minecraft for Gear VR edition the company released in May. "Simulator sickness," one of the names given to the sort of nausea that can accompany virtual reality software, depends on a number of factors, all of which boil down to convincing your brain that what you're seeing is actually "real," rather than an illusion that should be dispelled.


Microsoft Minecraft for Windows 10 beta now supports Oculus Rift

ZDNet

Microsoft is adding a free update to the beta version of Minecraft for Windows 10 that will bring Oculus Rift headset compatibility to the game. Microsoft has been known to be working the Oculus team as of a year ago on developing a virtual-reality-enabled version of Minecraft. Microsoft officials said today, August 15, that Minecraft's Windows 10 DX11 performance "has been optimized even further to augment the VR experience." In addition to the VR features Microsoft added to the Gear VR Edition of Minecraft, Microsoft also added some additional new options, such as support for keyboard and mouse and VR control options for "immersive comfortable turning" when using the Xbox One controller. We must face up to the potential dangers of widespread virtual reality technology before it's too late.


Play 'Minecraft' on the Oculus Rift today

Engadget

We tried out the Oculus Rift version of Minecraft back in March and found it to be absolutely delightful. "It's one of the best and more immersive VR experiences I've had thus far," senior editor Nathan Ingraham wrote. "In fact, that lack of fine detail actually helps Minecraft be so successful -- the game doesn't try to mimic reality. Instead, it felt more like I stepped into a cartoon." Minecraft is already playable on the Samsung Gear VR, though that's limited to the features of the Pocket Edition.