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Valve releases SteamVR beta for Oculus Rift

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Oculus Rift "Crystal Cove" prototype
Oculus Rift "Crystal Cove" prototype

Valve has released the SteamVR beta for the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset.

The experimental VR mode for the Steam gaming client has been launched to integrate the Oculus Rift headset.

The STeamVR beta offers a new way to experience Steam games using the Oculus Rift, which support “Big Picture” mode.

“As of the most recent Steam Client Beta, Steam now supports an experimental VR mode,” wrote Valve Programmer, Joe Ludwig on the Steam Community forum.

“If you own an Oculus Rift dev kit you can try it out by starting Steam with “-vr” on the command line. Then press the Big Picture button to enter Big Picture VR mode.”

A number of Steam Community forum users have already tested out virtual reality Steam gaming with the Oculus Rift, and have seems very impressed with the Big Picture mode. Games appear as it they float on a giant screen infront of you.

Hwoever, judging from the comments there seems to be some tracking lag at the moment, so be prepared for some issues at this early stage.

Ludwig adds that you might need to do the following when first trying the SteamVR beta:
1) Run Steam in the desktop client without the -vr option
2) Find "SteamVR" under "Tools" in your library. (If you don't have it installed, install it.)
3) Bring up properties on SteamVR and opt-in to the "Beta Update" beta. Let the update download.
4) Quit the Steam Client again and start it with –vr

Oculus unveiled the new Oculus Rift “Crystal Cove” prototype at CES 2014, which uses some bizarre OLED technology to cut latency and motion blur.

Read more: Steam Machine specs and prices

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