« Now Available: Betrayer, the Stylish Stealth Shooter Fresh from Steam's Early Access Program | Main | Top Five New World Notes Posts from Last Week »

Friday, March 28, 2014


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Saffia Widdershins

Well, people of either gender suffering from motion sickness might be the largest group to feel negatively ...

But there are people who would find Occulus Rift difficult in various ways.

People with visual problems, for a start - can you even wear it over spectacles, let alone people who have more complex visual problems who might need screen readers?

And can you use a keyboard while you're locked in to the headset?

Within Second Life, people who use translators to communicate - it's one of the key reasons why a lot of volunteer work is done in typed chat.

In a first person shooter, such issues might be trivial. But in an environment so carefully socially nuanced as Second Life, such issues may become seriously significant.

Clearly anyone who suffers from motion sickness may have a problem - these things are seldom clear cut and the continuum is unlikely to cut at the point of all men v all women - it's more likely to be, if this is a problem, many women and some men v. many men and some women.

But, yes, 50% of the potential audience closed out is significant.

One assumes that Facebook carried out due diligence on such matters, rather than going for the shiny.


The violence of FPS games makes me want to vomit.

Let's hope VR tech can be used for other sorts of games and we can address any motion-sickness issues. One wonders if a wrist-band or similar might reduce the effects?

Adeon Writer

Not to discredit Janine, but has she tried it? VR has a lot of historical bad rep to overcome. DK2 addressed much of motion sickness, the final thing should be ideal.

Adeon Writer

(Of course there are also those who will get sick no matter what because they think they'll get sick, check out the term "nocebo")


Adeon, if you read her article you can see this wasn't just her opinion of the OR but her opinion based on research. She certainly has enough data backing her up to call for more research.


VR Sickness is well researched, not only females are affected

Simulation Sickness and Motion Sickness due to Vitual Reality http://ht.ly/vaG19

The world's most advanced simulator, the NADS-1, located at the National Advanced Driving Simulator, is capable of accurately stimulating the vestibular system with a 360-degree horizontal field of view and 13 degree of freedom motion base. Studies have shown that exposure to rotational motions in a virtual environment can cause significant increases in nausea and other symptoms of motion sickness http://ht.ly/vaFYW

Video Game Simulator Sickness http://ht.ly/vaFVP

Oculus Rift is working to solve simulator sickness http://ht.ly/vaFTF

Oculus Rift Team Working to Stop the Motion Sickness http://ht.ly/vaFRQ

Ada Radius

It's not just Oculus Rift, though that would make it much worse. Virtual reality onscreen can cause it too - I've been doing design workarounds since I joined SL in 2006. I am a sufferer - migraine triggers, and nausea. It's mostly women who are triggered, but I've met one man iSL who did too. It isn't virtual reality itself, it's the same visuals and sounds that trigger it in RL - certain frequencies of blinking lights and rotating textures, along with same speed rhythmic sounds, such as police lights and siren. In VR they're a problem mostly at clubs and battle games. So a Second Life dance club at Christmas or a whup whup helicoptor with rotating blades firing particles can be hellishly awful, not fun at all, and I otherwise LOVE playing with attack helicopters. Every battle builder I complained to was more than happy to make adjustments (slow down the rotates and blinkies, usually) so I could play. Club owners, not so much.

Arcadia Codesmith

I think declaring this a problem that affects "most" or "nearly all" women is premature based on the available data set.

That said, any research that improves the technology to make it more accessible to more people should definitely be top priority. VR is a significant piece of the future, naysayers notwithstanding, and VR sickness is going to be a substantial barrier. If we can eliminate it early, it will help the field along.

Pussycat Catnap

"certain frequencies of blinking lights and rotating textures, along with same speed rhythmic sounds, such as police lights and siren."

That can get people who don't suffer from motion sickness in other ways (that they know of yet).

I've not experienced motion sickness in RL (have never tried to mount an Octopus on my head so I don't know for VR)...

But the list you've got there is on my 'garish design' list. I see it sometimes in SL, and very often on the web in general. Especially in Asian web-design. Living in a global city I am exposed to foreign websites all the time, and designs from China, Korea, but especially Japan love brighter colors, more moving parts, and animated adverts - like a 1990s Portal website, but in Broadband. Can make one sick to try and read a page on such a website while a million things are flashing and moving all around the content - even normal portions like frame borders.

It doesn't take long in exploring mainland to encounter places using this kind of 'everything is bright, flashing, and moving about' design.

It makes me wonder what sorts of content people in the research were exposed to - whether the issue here is color, motion, or conflicting motion (things moving in multiple inconsistent patterns, or out of sync motion (like how motion sickness in a vehicle can be triggered by seeing movement that is different from what the body is feeling).

Pussycat Catnap

@Ada p2:
Every battle builder I complained to was more than happy to make adjustments (slow down the rotates and blinkies, usually) so I could play. Club owners, not so much.
I often turn off glow and particles not just because it speeds up my system, but because some venues think 'garish' means 'more lively' and turning these two off can do a lot to make a place less visually jarring.

Arcadia Codesmith

Pussycat said: "out of sync motion (like how motion sickness in a vehicle can be triggered by seeing movement that is different from what the body is feeling)."

That's an important point. Parallex and shading are vital cues, but when your eyes tell you you're moving and your inner ear is telling you you're stationary (or visa versa), there's bound to be issues. And we haven't even touched the issue that men in general are culturally conditioned to ignore and suppress feelings of illness that women have no problem reporting.

Monalisa Robbiani

"VR mostly attracts men for the same reason first-person shooters also mostly attract men: We men are much more likely to find these experiences immersive and enjoyable."

What if you have confused reason and result in this one? Maybe shooters are enjoyable by men, because men are being told that, being a man, they sure must like it. So they spend a lot of time with their oh so masculine shooting games getting used to the experience while playing. Girls tend to avoid this kind of games, because, yes you guessed it, it's a male only culture. Then, when the men try out VR later, they are much less likely to vomit, not because they are men, but because they are already used to the VR experience.

On the other hand: Virtual worlds being populated my men only, half of them in female disguise, is that really something new? ;)


"its future is very much in doubt."

Like First person shooters, oh wait...

Even though i believe the occulus rift will succeed with its current limitations i agree they should try to improve on the motion sickness aspect.

More research is needed though, one factor you need to consider is that men that play games have basically been training to dealing with motion sickness since they have started playing games.

I know i used to get sick when playing wolfenstein 3d for the first times. SO maybe women can train themselves to overcome that.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Making a Metaverse That Matters Wagner James Au ad
Please buy my book!
Thumb Wagner James Au Metaverse book
Wagner James "Hamlet" Au
Dutchie Evergreen Slideshow 2024
Bad-Unicorn Funny Second Life items
Juicybomb_EEP ad
My book on Goodreads!
Wagner James Au AAE Speakers Metaverse
Request me as a speaker!
Making of Second Life 20th anniversary Wagner James Au Thumb
my site ... ... ...
PC for SL
Recommended PC for SL
Macbook Second Life
Recommended Mac for SL

Classic New World Notes stories:

Woman With Parkinson's Reports Significant Physical Recovery After Using Second Life - Academics Researching (2013)

We're Not Ready For An Era Where People Prefer Virtual Experiences To Real Ones -- But That Era Seems To Be Here (2012)

Sander's Villa: The Man Who Gave His Father A Second Life (2011)

What Rebecca Learned By Being A Second Life Man (2010)

Charles Bristol's Metaverse Blues: 87 Year Old Bluesman Becomes Avatar-Based Musician In Second Life (2009)

Linden Limit Libertarianism: Metaverse community management illustrates the problems with laissez faire governance (2008)

The Husband That Eshi Made: Metaverse artist, grieving for her dead husband, recreates him as an avatar (2008)

Labor Union Protesters Converge On IBM's Metaverse Campus: Leaders Claim Success, 1850 Total Attendees (Including Giant Banana & Talking Triangle) (2007)

All About My Avatar: The story behind amazing strange avatars (2007)

Fighting the Front: When fascists open an HQ in Second Life, chaos and exploding pigs ensue (2007)

Copying a Controversy: Copyright concerns come to the Metaverse via... the CopyBot! (2006)

The Penguin & the Zookeeper: Just another unlikely friendship formed in The Metaverse (2006)

"—And He Rezzed a Crooked House—": Mathematician makes a tesseract in the Metaverse — watch the videos! (2006)

Guarding Darfur: Virtual super heroes rally to protect a real world activist site (2006)

The Skin You're In: How virtual world avatar options expose real world racism (2006)

Making Love: When virtual sex gets real (2005)

Watching the Detectives: How to honeytrap a cheater in the Metaverse (2005)

The Freeform Identity of Eboni Khan: First-hand account of the Black user experience in virtual worlds (2005)

Man on Man and Woman on Woman: Just another gender-bending avatar love story, with a twist (2005)

The Nine Souls of Wilde Cunningham: A collective of severely disabled people share the same avatar (2004)

Falling for Eddie: Two shy artists divided by an ocean literally create a new life for each other (2004)

War of the Jessie Wall: Battle over virtual borders -- and real war in Iraq (2003)

Home for the Homeless: Creating a virtual mansion despite the most challenging circumstances (2003)

Newstex_Author_Badge-Color 240px
JuicyBomb_NWN5 SL blog
Ava Delaney SL Blog