Virtuix’s Omni treadmill is any VR game players dream. This treadmill allows players to walk and run through virtual worlds, giving them the perfect illusion that they are running through the world they are seeing. Omni is even making sure that gamers have the right content to match up to their epic treadmill as the first treadmill that works with VR.
The Virtuix Omni features a 360-degree view without the risk of falling or colliding with others, players can even run full speed on it. The treadmill comes with a special pair of shoes that gamers must wear when using the treadmill, which helps the treadmill track players movement when using it. One big let down of the treadmill is there is no mechanical support for crouching yet. Players are secured with a waist harness and that acts as a wrap around circle that keeps them safe while they are on the platform.
The Omni treadmill was originally funded through a successful Kickstarter campaign in 2013 that raised $1.1 million and was designed for home use. The company also raised several rounds of investments and participated on the US reality investment show Shark Tank. It was one of the first companies to crowdfund an investment opportunity following investments restrictions in the United States as well. Virtuix then switched their consumer to the growing global VR arcade market and as of today it is almost impossible to get one of these bad boys in your home, mainly due to its size and price tag.
The treadmill is currently only compatible with the HTC Vive. Users also warn that the machine takes some time to get use to and does use a good amount of energy to use it.
“It’s not like walking in real life,” said ImaginationsVR owner Alex Zarac. “It’s a big learning curve, but your brain gets used to it.”
Instead of normal walking, players must slide their feet back and forth while wearing the special shoes, to register a step in the game. Think of it like being on an elliptical machines, which is why it takes a great deal of energy to use. Don’t let that scare you from using it though. The Omni offers a unique experience for VR entertainment and it is completely worth turning into a sweaty mess or turning your legs into Jell-O to use it.
The Omni treadmill also comes in Omniverse, a platform that is intended for use by commercial Omni operators, like arcades. Users can use Omniverse to access compatible games, while owners maintain operation. Currently there are sixteen games available with Omniverse, with more planned in the future.
Some fan favorite games include Affected: The Manor, Primordian, and The Soulkepper VR. All these games involve a lot of running and weapon use, perfect for what the Omni treadmill was made for. You can also use Omni’s own VR software called Omni Arena, which is eSports themed.
Omniverse will store users’ analytics on usage and gameplay, plus users will be able to jump between apps at will while using the VR. New games will also soon be rolled out for Omniverse including:
- AFFECTED – The Manor
• Bow Master
• Coin Rush
• Karnage Chronicles
• Nature Treks VR
• Omni Arena
• Project Ghost
• Quell 4D
• The Bellows
• The SoulKeeper VR
• TRAVR: Shadow Ops
• TRAVR: Training Ops
• VRZ Torment