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TOPIC: [TUTO] VR with Android and Riftcat Classic

[TUTO] VR with Android and Riftcat Classic 28 Sep 2018 20:48 #110396

  • grosbedo
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Hello everyone,

A quick tutorial to share my experience trying to configure a simple, supposedly non-VR ready, Android phone to use as a VR headset with City Car Driving 1.5.

First off, you will need to use the Steam version of the game, in order to be able to use SteamVR, as I did not find any way to make an Android headset recognized by the game without (the direct hooks do not seem to work well, that's why most "Android to VR" softwares now are more focused on providing hooks for SteamVR, as it provides kind of a standard for VR).

Here are the instructions:

How to configure VR with android: if you have nvidia on laptop (so with double graphic card with intel integrated gpu), open nvidia control panel and for global settings enable prefer nvidia card, so that all apps will preferentially use nvidia.
Then install Riftcat+VRidge 1.5.0f (classic, NOT the v2 version! Get it at support.riftcat.com/hc/en-us/articles/211656085--Classic-VRidge-Basic-Tutorial-How-to-start-). It is free to try for 10 minute sessions, so it does not cost anything to try out.

Install City Car Driving via Steam, and install SteamVR. Then in SteamVR, disable supersampling, and leave "extended mode" enabled (no direct mode). This might also work with direct mode but for me it works perfectly fine with extended mode.

First thing is to try to use Riftcat: launch riftcat on the computer, then launch vridge classic on the phone, and when both are connected, try to launch SteamVR via Riftcat. If it's the first time you use SteamVR, you need to "configure the room". After that, a virtual space should appear on the phone, if not, something is wrong.

Since City Car Driving is a bit difficult to configure with VR sometimes, I suggest to try out first on a free Steam game, like Poly Runner VR. Once installed, you can simply launch the game from the desktop shortcut. It should directly appear in the VR headset (the Android phone), if not, something is wrong.

If the game appears and the gyroscope is correctly tracking the phone orientation, you can close this game and try to launch City Car Driving. In the settings, Graphics tab, make sure to select "Screen+VR" and not just "Screen". Once this option is selected, you can exit and launch again the game, and now start an exercice or free driving (else the game does not show in the VR headset if you are in the menus, you need to launch the game, else when in the menus it should still show a virtual space with a picture of the game's cover). Bonus advice: set texture quality to high if you want fast game loading (all other options can be set to lower quality if needed).

If everything went well, normally you should see the game on both your VR headset (ie, Android phone) and your screen (so that you can use the menus, see the warning messages, etc that do not show up in the VR).

Bonus tip: if you can see the game in the VR headset but there is an overlay masking it, in SteamVR, disable "Show VR Dashboard" or something like that to avoid the overlay. Now you can restart the game and the overlay will be gone. Also you can set supersampling to 1.0 (disabled) in the Developer options tab to gain some reactiveness (and it also enhances the compatibility sometimes).

Bonus tip 2: If you get headaches when using the VR headset, it's probably that it's not greatly following your head (not very reactive). To enhance that, in Riftcat parameters, setup the video to be Low, but raise bitrate to 12Mbps at least (to get enough quality to see the environment), and in the game raise the resolution. Also choose the best hardware decoder you can given your graphic card. These settings should work good enough with Wifi to be reactive enough with reasonable acceptable graphics allowing to read the signs and to drive. If you can use USB tethering, use that for higher bitrate and better graphics in the VR goggles. Another alternative is to use the Phone Gyroscope + Freetrack option in Riftcat, to complement the phone's gyroscope with another head tracking device (which can simply be your webcam using FaceTrackNoIR or OpenTrack), but I did not try that out.

Have fun!
Last Edit: 29 Sep 2018 14:26 by grosbedo. Reason: Facetracknoir and not freetracknoir
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[TUTO] VR with Android and Riftcat Classic 28 Sep 2018 20:58 #110397

  • grosbedo
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BTW I tried Riftcat v2, Trinus, KinoVR and other alternatives, none worked, except Riftcat v1.5.0f with VRidge v1.5.0f, hence why I wrote the tutorial above, hope it will save time for someone else :-)
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[TUTO] VR with Android and Riftcat Classic 29 Sep 2018 19:10 #110410

  • KOZAN
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Any imput lag?
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[TUTO] VR with Android and Riftcat Classic 29 Sep 2018 20:15 #110411

  • grosbedo
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KOZAN wrote:
Any imput lag?

Of course yes but not much with the settings i advise above, it's quite responsive to my head movements and in fact more than i expected. And this is with wifi, supposedly it's possible to have near 0 lag using usb tethering, but i have yet to try it (and it's much more inconvenient to have a cable connected!).

So the input lag is not so much the major drawback of Android vr compared to dedicated vr headsets. I'd rather say that the head tracking is, becaus phones gyroscopes are not super precise, so after a few minutes the center of view will be displaced (in CCD you can assign a key to quickly recenter, but when you are doing maneuvers it's difficult to know if you are still centered or not). That's why i suggest that the best enhancement you can get might be by adding an external absolute head tracker, i think then Android VR would be quite comfortable to use. Now Android already is useable for vr but not as good as dedicated headsets :-)

Ps: also the responsiveness is highly dependent on the phone quality aed newness, so with an old phone i think using the phone only to stream the video and use an external head tracker would be best in this case too!
Last Edit: 29 Sep 2018 20:23 by grosbedo.
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[TUTO] VR with Android and Riftcat Classic 13 Jan 2019 18:30 #111545

why i can't have output in vridge android ,but the gyroscope is working in city car driving
please help me because I have try all ways. But still it doesn't get output on my smartphone.
i use riftcat software on my pc.and i use vridge on my android.
i have video about this problem in attachement please watch.




https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ZsFY4nlv6j8zM1G50Ui8zP84v5SS6dTc/view?usp=sharing
Last Edit: 14 Jan 2019 09:10 by riyanardi. Reason: video attachement can't be seen
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