In big news for fans of VR and Cyberpunk 2077 (you are out there, right?), the modder behind the R.E.A.L. VR mods for GTA V and Red Dead Redemption 2 is now working on bringing Cyberpunk 2077 to virtual reality. And with a little luck, it should be out soon (assuming it’s not undone by the ‘Early Access’ state of the game).
Following a poll on modder Luke Ross’ Patreon page asking which games his backers would like to see him mod in the future, Cyberpunk 2077 came out on top. I asked Ross if this means Cyberpunk 2077 is next up on the VR modding block. He confirmed that it is, and even gave a broad release date. “If nothing goes wrong, I’d say it should come out in January,” he told me.
Ross says that while Cyberpunk’s REDengine 4 is no more or less VR-friendly than other engines (“which is to say, not particularly VR-friendly at all”), there are a few things going for Cyberpunk 2077 that should smooth out the process. “One major bonus about CP2077 is that it’s already played in first person,” he says, “which is very good for VR immersiveness, unlike for example the Mafia Trilogy [which he also ported to VR] where I had to implement my own ‘fake-first-person’ camera.
What’s unique about Ross’ mod is that it’s effectively an engine (a “VR injection framework”) for turning games into VR. He still has to do plenty of work in getting specific games working with the framework, but his whole setup means that he can put out VR mods at an impressively speedy rate.
“Now that my modding framework is approaching some level of maturity, I can probably release one game per month (on average),” he tells me. “Of course that depends on the specific challenges that each game poses, and there’s always a possibility that a certain game turns out not to be moddable at all due to some unforeseen issues.”
Of course, Cyberpunk 2077 seems ripe for such ‘unforeseen issues,’ given the game’s technical shonkiness since release. Even though Ross admits that the game’s instability and procession of big updates are a major issue and the reason he hasn’t modded it yet, he remains hopeful of getting his VR mod out there soon – even before the game’s next ‘major update’.
Alongside Cyberpunk 2077, Ross also revealed that he’s nearly finished work on another VR conversion. While he didn’t reveal the name of the game, he did say that it’s ‘DX12-based, open-world, and will look epic in VR, especially the vistas and the battles with <redacted>.’
Hmmm, based on those criteria my guesses would be Horizon: Zero Dawn or The Witcher 3. What do you think?