CNET First Look
Dip your hands into VR with Oculus TouchThey're the best VR game controllers, but do they make the Rift the best VR system?
[MUSIC] You know VR is something that goes on your head but it's increasingly something that involves your hands too. The Oculus Rift promised full body VR when it debuted earlier this year but it's unique controllers weren't here yet. Now they are and the touch. Are the best handheld [UNKNOWN] controls on the market if you can deal with the setup and the tracking limitations. Touch cost $200, and come with two controllers and a second camera sensor, which you're going to need, more on that in a second. The touch controllers are great, because they not only track motion, but hey have real buttons and analog sticks so they can be used as normal game controllers. Imagine a Playstation DualShock split in two, sort of. Touch has another clever trick. It can track finger positions and whether you're pressing or even resting your finger on a button. Translated into VR, it creates the closest thing to real hand motions and finger motions of any VR system out there. But there's an annoying setup process. Touch comes with a second camera sensor. That plus the one that comes with the Oculus Rift are both needed to register movement with Touch. And they need to be placed at least several feet apart from each other, about three to seven feet. And in front of the room. And both need USB 3 ports wired right to your PC. Also consider that your headset is gonna require USB 3 and HDMI. Even then, touch only tracks half the room, the stuff in front of you. You can walk around across several feet of space like a hollow deck but the range cuts out much like Playstation VR. Meanwhile, the HTC Vive's full room system can scan front and back across 15 feet agonaly allowing a lot more freedom. Oculus Rift with touch is a big step forward but it's more like standing VR than full motion VR. Connecting a third sensor in the back will be an option next year, but that third sensor will need yet another USB port wire running to your PC. Hope you have lots of ports and patience. There are already several dozen games that make good use of touch though, and a lot are really fun. But the best use of touch is it's gestures and smaller hand movements. Action games, painting and sculpting, or picking up things in other worlds are the best moments. But you need to spend $800 to get the whole Rift and Touch package. Plus buy a VR-ready gaming PC. That's a lot of money. HTC Vive costs the same. The Playstation VR's all-in package is considerably less. Rift isn't everything it could be, but those touch controllers are definitely the future of where hand controls are heading and every VR system should get something as good as these. [MUSIC]