Evaluating and Comparing Game-controller based Virtual Locomotion Techniques
The incremental hardware costs of virtual locomotion are minimized when the technique uses interaction capabilities available in controllers and devices that are already part of the VE system, e.g., gamepads, keyboards, and multi-function controllers. We used a different locomotion technique for each of these three devices: gamepad thumb-stick (joystick walking), a customized hybrid keyboard for gaming (speedpad walking), and an innovative technique that uses the orientation and triggers of the HTC Vive controllers (TriggerWalking). We explored the efficacy of locomotion techniques using these three devices in a hide and seek task in an indoor environment. We measured task performance, simulator sickness, system usability, perceived workload, and preference. We found that users had a strong preference for TriggerWalking, which also had the least increase in simulator sickness, the highest performance score, and highest perceived usability. However, participants using TriggerWalking also had the most object and wall-collisions. Overall we found that TriggerWalking is an effective locomotion technique and that is has significant and important benefits. Future research will explore if TriggerWalking can be used with equal benefits in other virtual-environments, on different tasks, and types of movement.