The Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are the two main VR players for PC users. Whether you pick one or the other is a matter of preference, as they are different in a handful of ways. Available software is definitely something to consider, and the latest update to the Oculus app may make it an even bigger factor than it was.
Before Oculus version 1.4, HTC Vive users were able to install a third-party software that would allow them to use apps and games on the non-official headset. This fan-made software is named “Revive”, and its functionality has been broken due to added platform integrity checks.
HTC Vive users obviously grew worried by the sudden decrease in game availability, then quickly reminded the company of founder Palmer Luckey’s words: “If customers buy a game from us, I don’t care if they mod it to run on whatever they want.”
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Oculus states this update was not about stopping Revive, though. Spokesperson Jim Redner states these changes were made “to curb piracy and protect games and apps that developers have worked so hard to make. This update wasn’t targeted at a specific hack.”
But there seems to be a bit of a discrepancy with this argument, though. Revive’s team assures this is not really a DRM or purchase check. Instead, the new upgraded Oculus app sees whether an actual Oculus Rift is connected or not.
Revive does suggest a workaround, but we see no point in it, as you would have to connect an Oculus Rift development model to start the Revive-patched game and then use it with the HTC Vive. This suggests the need to own both headsets, which is both expensive and unnecessary.
Regardless, the Revive team has pledged to work around this issue, but claims “it will be challenging to circumvent this check while keeping the DRM intact.” HTC Vive users will have to stick with their own Steam-powered software for now. Meanwhile, Oculus Rift owners can still operate compatible apps downloaded from Steam. Not really a fair situation, is it?
How many of you will be affected by these changes? Will it sway you from purchasing and HTC Vive? Hit the comments to give us your 2 cents!