Joysticks could be a thing of the past: Virtuix will soon debut an omni-directional treadmill that can track gamers as they run, walk, and jump in every direction. The device — aptly dubbed the Omni — works alongside the Oculus Rift to form an encompassing virtual reality experience that fully replaces traditional movement controls. The company has shown off support for games including Crysis Warhead, Team Fortress 2, and Skyrim in a series of YouTube videos, but we're told that the device will work with all PC games when it's released.
Virtuix is aiming to launch a Kickstarter campaign for the Omni around the end of May or the beginning of June, and it's targeting a price of $400-600 for the device, a company representative told The Verge. The Omni does not use a moving belt like a traditional treadmill, and instead employs a slick, sloped surface that users slide down as they take steps forward.
Virtuix has also demonstrated integration with the Oculus Rift, which allows players to use the Omni in 360-degrees. The treadmill integration could resolve a virtual reality gaming issue that Palmer Luckey, founder of Oculus VR, discussed during this year's SXSW Interactive. Quick movement can become disorienting while using the Oculus Rift, and Luckey pointed out that an omni-directional treadmill could solve that. "With a little bit of prediction and misdirection you can make people feel like they’re in an infinite space," he said.