In 2015, the German company Icaros entered the virtual reality market with a first flight simulator. His goal ? Revolutionize the way people play and exercise by combining fitness with virtual reality.
Indeed, by attempting to fly in the VR, the user tilts his weight on the machine and thus practice physical exercises without even realizing it. He thus improves his physical condition, his state of health, his reflexes, his coordination and his balance.
While the Icaros Pro was mainly intended for sports halls and rehabilitation centers, in 2018 the firm launched the Icaros HOME aimed at individuals. She also launched in the eSports market with an online multiplayer gaming platform called ICARACE.
By visiting Icaros on its booth at CES 2019, we finally had the opportunity to test this flight simulator as well as the Icaros R, a brand new motorcycle simulator. The Icaros was connected to an HTC Vive headset, while the Icaros R operated with a simple Oculus Go.
While trying Icaros, we were surprised that this device does not cause Motion Sickness. As the machine tilts in the direction the user is putting their weight, there is no feeling of nausea even with sudden movement.
Indeed, the movements in the real world being synchronized with those of the virtual world, the inner ear is not disturbed as can be the case with classic VR games without a physical simulator.
In addition, we have seen the effectiveness of the system. Effectively, real physical labor has to be done in the real world to successfully control its flight path in the video game. Quickly, you take your marks and begin to better control your balance.
In the long term, we can easily see the potential benefits of this system for people with balance problems. Likewise, the experience does indeed allow the upper muscle groups to work.
The new motorcycle simulator, Icaros R, for its part, is particularly fun and fun. It really feels like you're on a motorcycle. There again, to control the trajectory of the vehicle in the video game, the user must tilt his weight correctly and therefore work on his notion of balance and his reflexes.
Sadly, we did not have the opportunity to test the ICARACE multiplayer platform. However, an application of the simulators that we were able to test in the field of eSports does indeed seem very interesting and exciting to us.
The different ICAROS machines are now available for sale to the general public. It is possible to order the model of your choice now on the company's official website. However, the price is only communicated on request.