Toshiba "Heads" Towards Virtual Reality
Once upon a time, Nintendo asked gamers to shove their peepers up against a rubber lining and peer into a screen filled with all of two colors: red and black. The images seared into the gamer's retinas matched the surrounding package. At one time it was considered the future of gaming – virtual reality, and Nintendo made no mistake in naming the system the "Virtual Boy". However, the company did make the mistake of marketing a console that had no ability to integrate multiplayer, fried one's eyeballs with just one primary color, and was generally uncomfortable to use.
The years have passed since Nintendo gave up on the Virtual Boy, but from recent pictures of its apparent successor, the discomfort has not changed. Gavin, one of our web designers, pointed out this gargantuan machine. In case you're looking at this photo and wondering – and really, how could you look away – Nintendo has long since given up the ghost on the idea. Toshiba is the newest fan of massive VR headgear, and for once the boys (and girls) at Nintendo can sit back and laugh their arses off at someone else's stupid idea.
According to reports, Toshiba's helmet (or as I see it, "braindome") offers 360 degree views through a 40cm screen. It's meant to add to the gaming experience, but unless you're looking for a virtual tour of neck pain, you might want to just stick with Mario and his boy, Luigi.
Just how heavy is the thing? We've been told 6.6 pounds, which sounds like a ball cap considering the device's monstrous appearance. Still, that's heavy enough. Although the average age of gamers has risen drastically in recent years, a seventy-pounds-soaking-wet eleven year old is not going to have the bodybuilder's neck required to support Toshiba's device.
Ok, so maybe we're missing out on something huge. Sure, at one time some jerk probably poked fun at, "pa-shah", the Nintendo Entertainment System. "Like that'll ever fly. Who wants some Clue?"
However, it's unlikely that Toshiba's device will shoot for the mainstream or the home market. Let's face it, I'd be surprised if the Best Buy delivery guy could fit this through my apartment door. However, it might make for some cool displays at electronics shows. And from there, compact, practical versions.
Hell, even the crappy Virtual Boy was a whole lot smaller than this thing.