Virtual Reality Just Got Serious – Russia Develops The ‘Virtusphere’

Back in the 80s and 90s, game developers couldn’t wait for the day that technology would advance enough to allow the integration of 3D graphics into video game consoles. Now that 3D gaming is old news, the latest technological development could take the video game world by storm. The Nintendo Wii has inspired gamers everywhere to get out of their chairs and get into the action, but the Russian made ‘Virtusphere’ may take consoles almost completely out of the picture. Described as a huge sphere that requires players to get inside and move in response to what they see, the Virtusphere is the largest video game simulator on the market. The Virtusphere doesn’t just resemble those huge rolling human-driven hamster balls you remember from ‘American Gladiators’ – they require the same amount of physical output as well. It is definitely not for the faint of heart, but the workout you can get from playing in a Virtusphere makes the Wii pale in comparison.

The Virtusphere could make obesity a thing of the past, if only it didn’t carry such a high price tag. Currently going at about $35,000 a pop, the creators, who call themselves the Latpov brothers, still create each unit by hand. Right now, the only buyers showing a real interest in the Virusphere are coming from military and other law enforcement agencies. The Latpov brothers claim that half of their buyers hail from the US, but international orders are steadily increasing. It is not yet known whether the Virtusphere will serve as the prototype for similar, but down-sized domestic versions that are more convenient for in-home use, but the invention certainly proves promise for the future.

About the Author