Steam Controller 2 incoming - uses Index features

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#1  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

Looks like a revised version is coming. Valve seems to have more or less confirmed it with a whopping 90% off, Valve clearing them out.

Steam Controller v2 patent shows it using the Valve Index Knuckles’ pressure feature

A few months back some Reddit users discovered that Valve got a patent published detailing its vision for a possible Steam controller version two in December 2018. The design looks pretty similar to its existing controller, but adds some new features, as you’d expect. Other than the patent, which is far from a confirmation that anything is actually on the way, though there have been no real signs of a new Steam controller so far – until now. A YouTuber has just unveiled some findings from Steam files that could suggest otherwise – and that it could include the cool pressure feature showcased by the Valve Index ‘Knuckle‘ controllers.

YouTube channel Critical Input, which according its bio “covers anything and everything related to Steam Input” (Valve’s software for controller profiling), has posted a video showing that in some Steam controller files there appears to be a section for “Steam Controller V2” (you can check the video out below). From about the 2:46 mark, the YouTuber highlights references to “upper and lower grips on both sides”, and intriguingly, pressure readings for the controller’s bumpers and four grips.

This seems to correspond directly with what you can see in the patent’s design. The new design incorporates “underlying force sensitive resistors”, or “FSR”, and the patent says “in this context, a FSR is a transducer that has an electrical resistance” that “changes based on the applied force that it experiences”. Basically, this measures how much pressure you’re putting down, adding a new dimension to your gameplay – and sounds very like the new Valve Index Knuckle controllers.

In our Valve Index review, we highlighted that they “measure how hard you’re squeezing the grip, allowing for a more analogue style of manipulation. You could just lift something delicate into the air, or crush it in your fist”. The Index controller patent itself similarly references the “force sensing resistor (FSR)” and a “plunger” that “conveys a compressive force applied via the outer shell”. Sounds pretty familiar.

We know that Valve is already producing this kind of technology, meaning that the Steam Controller version two, while far from confirmed, is looking just a little more likely.

Now that Critical Input has found these files, which could potentially suggest that Valve might have progressed things a little further beyond the patent, perhaps it’s time to start feeling a little hopeful that the developer has a new controller – and a pretty exciting-sounding one at that – in the works. We’ll just have to wait and see.

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#2 Random_Matt
Member since 2013 • 4497 Posts

Shit, £4, why not.

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#3 Random_Matt
Member since 2013 • 4497 Posts

Oh, £7.70 delivery.

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#4 Random_Matt
Member since 2013 • 4497 Posts

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

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#5  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@Random_Matt said:

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

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#6 Random_Matt
Member since 2013 • 4497 Posts

@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

The left track pad, does it have a click function or is it just swipe forward for moving character.

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#7  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@Random_Matt said:
@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

The left track pad, does it have a click function or is it just swipe forward for moving character.

Both (trackpad on right left is big D-pad). It has customisation option as well where-by it can act like a tracking ball with momentum. It's vibrates to simulate it.

It's main downside is it's D-pad, for classic 2D retro games, not great.

Everything else, perfecto.

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#8 Random_Matt
Member since 2013 • 4497 Posts

@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:
@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

The left track pad, does it have a click function or is it just swipe forward for moving character.

Both (trackpad on right left is big D-pad). It has customisation option as well where-by it can act like a tracking ball with momentum. It's vibrates to simulate it.

It's main downside is it's D-pad, for classic 2D retro games, not great.

Everything else, perfecto.

Sweet, looking forward to it.

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#9 Ezekiel43
Member since 2017 • 2035 Posts

@uninspiredcup said:

Valve seems to have more or less confirmed it with a whopping 90% off, Valve clearing them out.

Ach, there I go buying more shit I don't need.

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#10 Litchie
Member since 2003 • 24830 Posts

@ezekiel43 said:
@uninspiredcup said:

Valve seems to have more or less confirmed it with a whopping 90% off, Valve clearing them out.

Ach, there I go buying more shit I don't need.

I was also gonna, but it's out of stock now. :( Damn..

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#11 sakaiXx  Online
Member since 2013 • 6527 Posts

Hope they improve the build quality cause the original controller felt really cheap.

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#12 pelvist
Member since 2010 • 7512 Posts

I was talking about getting another Steam controller just last night, ill hold off for a bit and see what happens with this.

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#13 PC_Rocks
Member since 2018 • 2791 Posts

Valve the only one innovating while the console manufacturers are busy recycling their 90's tech. I wouldn't be surprised if next gen consoles adapt features from Steam controller.

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#14 Howmakewood
Member since 2015 • 6008 Posts

@sakaixx: it really does, the cheapest plastic you can think of, shame as otherwise its a great controller

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#15 Gatygun
Member since 2010 • 1703 Posts

If only valve created stuff pc gamers cared about. Instead of wasting money on this garbage.

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#16 R4gn4r0k
Member since 2004 • 32113 Posts

Valve still making more hardware than games I see.

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#17  Edited By NoodleFighter
Member since 2011 • 10630 Posts

I was thinking about the Steam controller recently. I felt that it was about time it got updated and with the Xbox Elite type of treatment. Glad to see they haven't forgotten it. I'm wondering if the Steam Controller 2 will be supported for Half Life: Alyx. Kinda felt like the Steam controller mapper supporting Dualshock 4 and Switch Pro controllers would make it redundant since both those controllers also have gyroscopes you can activate to get more accurate aiming.

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#18 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11939 Posts

Lol, ok for that price I'll bite and give it a go

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#19 VFighter
Member since 2016 • 5649 Posts

@pc_rocks: Ughhh, hope not.

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#20  Edited By osan0
Member since 2004 • 15509 Posts

Interesting. I love the steam controller but there is some room for improvement.

Longer travel on the triggers for racing games.

Somehow making the left trackpad a more effective D-Pad too without compromising the flexibility. Though if it can be a great Dpad and a great scroll wheel i think that would cover its most common uses.

Easier to click shoulder buttons.

A bit comfier.

As for integrating the Knuckles controller tech....an interesting idea but i'm not sure how useful it would be on a, er, relatively normal controller. It makes a lot of sense in VR but squeezing a normal controller or tracking fingers.....hmm need to ponder that.

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#21 Willy105
Member since 2005 • 24937 Posts

I really wish it wasn't locked to Steam. The number of games I play on Steam has gone down over the years, and the Steam Controller only works with the Steam overlay.

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#22  Edited By mrbojangles25
Member since 2005 • 45054 Posts

Great news. Steam Controller is a fantastic controller with a lot of cool features worked into it; an even better "version 2.0" would be welcome.

@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:
@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

The left track pad, does it have a click function or is it just swipe forward for moving character.

Both (trackpad on right left is big D-pad). It has customisation option as well where-by it can act like a tracking ball with momentum. It's vibrates to simulate it.

It's main downside is it's D-pad, for classic 2D retro games, not great.

Everything else, perfecto.

Yeah good advice. Steam Controller is the perfect bridge between the lacking features of a traditional controller, and those moments where you just don't want to use a mouse and keyboard (like sitting on your couch, lying in bed, or whatever).

It's definitely an acquired taste, but if you stick with it, it is a great controller.

Also, sort-of-but-not-really on topic, the Steam Link was another great piece of hardware Valve made. If you ever wanted to bring your PC to your living room, it's a great and affordable option. Unfortunately I think they've been discontinued.

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#23 cainetao11
Member since 2006 • 37045 Posts

I own the first. I enjoyed using it for games.

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#24 uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@cainetao11 said:

I own the first. I enjoyed using it for games.

I honestly don't touch the Xbox controller anymore.

Only time I switch over it for the arcade stick or Genesis controller for retro-games.

Once you get use to the combined Gyro/trackpad I never want to go back to a thumb-stick.

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#25 ZmanBarzel
Member since 2014 • 2053 Posts

Eh, I'll consider it if it actually gets confirmed as a thing. I bought one in June 2018 as part of that "boy, Steam Link is really failing" bundle sale, but haven't used either. That didn't stop me from placing an order for a second Steam Controller for the $5.

I really should give it a shot, but so much of what I play -- old games -- isn't set up for anything other than a mouse and/or keyboard.

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#26  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@zmanbarzel said:

I really should give it a shot, but so much of what I play -- old games -- isn't set up for anything other than a mouse and/or keyboard.

It will still work on the Steam Controller, it's almost explicitly why it exists.

Loading Video...

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#27 ZmanBarzel
Member since 2014 • 2053 Posts

@uninspiredcup: Thank you!

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#28 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11939 Posts

@Willy105: can't you just launch your non-Steam game with the Steam overlay and still use the controller?

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#29 NoodleFighter
Member since 2011 • 10630 Posts

Just when I considered buying a new Steam controller they ran out of stock. Hopefully my original launch version still holds it down till the release of version 2. I've dropped the thing a couple of times where I can hear a little bit of rattling when shaken around. I sure hope it didn't mess with my gyroscopes accuracy or wireless connectivity strength.

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#30 foxhound_fox
Member since 2005 • 98126 Posts

Called it.

My sister was freaking out because they were discontinuing it.

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#31  Edited By uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@foxhound_fox said:

Called it.

My sister was freaking out because they were discontinuing it.

It's discontinued because of low sales, it's getting a new version with Index integration.

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#32  Edited By xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11939 Posts

Got my v1 this evening. It's pretty interesting. Definitely superior to my Xbox controller for games that don't require a d-pad, but even with gyro it'll be hard to get used to as a M&K replacement.

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#33  Edited By Raye_Gunn
Member since 2006 • 26 Posts

@mrbojangles25 said:

Great news. Steam Controller is a fantastic controller with a lot of cool features worked into it; an even better "version 2.0" would be welcome.

@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:
@uninspiredcup said:

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

The left track pad, does it have a click function or is it just swipe forward for moving character.

Both (trackpad on right left is big D-pad). It has customisation option as well where-by it can act like a tracking ball with momentum. It's vibrates to simulate it.

It's main downside is it's D-pad, for classic 2D retro games, not great.

Everything else, perfecto.

Yeah good advice. Steam Controller is the perfect bridge between the lacking features of a traditional controller, and those moments where you just don't want to use a mouse and keyboard (like sitting on your couch, lying in bed, or whatever).

It's definitely an acquired taste, but if you stick with it, it is a great controller.

Also, sort-of-but-not-really on topic, the Steam Link was another great piece of hardware Valve made. If you ever wanted to bring your PC to your living room, it's a great and affordable option. Unfortunately I think they've been discontinued.

The physical Steam Link is discontinued, but that's because they switched to a software based solution, there is a Steam Link smart TV app, it's on Samsung at minimum, but Valve said they would be expanding it to other models as well. The downside for those outside of the US is that it is available only on TVs set to a US region for some bizarre reason, so if you are outside of the US, you will have to change the region on your TV to use it, and will lose access to any apps specific to your country. I'm in Canada so i had to make the choice between Crave/HBO and Steam, chose Steam, (the Crave app is really awful, anyway. and can still watch on my computer) and use my Steam Controller for that, and it works great. But hopefully they will make it available in other countries as well.

Also, what people said above about giving it some time is true, so many people trashed it after using it for a couple hours, because it does have a bit of a learning curve, especially if you have grown accustomed to a different controller. But stick with it, and it will pay off, and you will be able to play games with it that no other controller would be able to touch, I play the Sims 3 with it and it works perfectly.

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#34 Willy105
Member since 2005 • 24937 Posts

@xantufrog: Steam tries to offer the ability to do this, but most other games use launchers that actively try to prevent the Steam overlay from appearing. And if the Steam overlay doesn't appear, then your Steam controller can't control the game.

For example, although you can make a game like Battlefield work for a little while, any random update would sever the connection and may not work again later.

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#35 mtron32
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@uninspiredcup said:
@Random_Matt said:

Lol, bought one. Never tried one before, rarely use controllers but some games require one.

Steam Controller will feel weird at first, but stick with it.

Once you get use to the larger D-pad and touch-control combined with gyro for free-look, you'll probably never want to go back to thumb-sticks.

With it's Steam integration it can play many games not built for control pads with pre-made user-configs, like System Shock and Thief.

This ruined me for console shooters after playing Doom on the Switch, that gyro free look is a must for aiming now.

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#36 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11939 Posts

@Willy105: That sucks. I've got a lot of GoG games I'd like to try, but I think must should work since they don't need a launcher

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#37 Ezekiel43
Member since 2017 • 2035 Posts

Disney Plus will reportedly offer The Simpsons in non-widescreen following backlash

https://www.cnet.com/news/disney-plus-will-reportedly-offer-the-simpsons-in-non-widescreen-following-backlash/#

If only people were always this outspoken about cropping.

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#38 uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@xantufrog said:

@Willy105: That sucks. I've got a lot of GoG games I'd like to try, but I think must should work since they don't need a launcher

Can confirm it works with GOG.

You can either "add a non steam shortcut" or just run GOG Galaxy itself inside Steam. Works fine with Ubisofts bullshittery as well.

Can't comment on Origin, only use it for CnC collection, otherwise wholly ignore it.

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#39 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11939 Posts

@ezekiel43: huh? Wrong thread I assume

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#40 kweeni
Member since 2007 • 11403 Posts

Missed the sale when it was like 5 euro feelsbadman. I had no idea it was going to go on sale, let alone for that price. Must have sold out at light speed. I mean I don't really need the controller since I can use my ps4 one if needed but for that price it's kinda hard to bargain. Oh well.

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#41 NoodleFighter
Member since 2011 • 10630 Posts
@uninspiredcup said:
@xantufrog said:

@Willy105: That sucks. I've got a lot of GoG games I'd like to try, but I think must should work since they don't need a launcher

Can confirm it works with GOG.

You can either "add a non steam shortcut" or just run GOG Galaxy itself inside Steam. Works fine with Ubisofts bullshittery as well.

Can't comment on Origin, only use it for CnC collection, otherwise wholly ignore it.

I've added Battlefield 3, Crysis 3 and Apex Legends to Steam and was able to use the overlay and controller. Although once I exit the game I have to completely exit out of origin in order for it to work again the next time.

For those that just got a Steam controller I highly recommend you look at this video. This guy is very helpful. I also recommend you try out coop shooters first. I used Warframe a lot as practice with the Steam controller to get use it.

@kweeni said:

Missed the sale when it was like 5 euro feelsbadman. I had no idea it was going to go on sale, let alone for that price. Must have sold out at light speed. I mean I don't really need the controller since I can use my ps4 one if needed but for that price it's kinda hard to bargain. Oh well.

Yeah there was far more orders of the Steam controller than Valve had in stock so they had to start cancelling some people's orders. PS4 controller should be a good alternative you can use the gyroscope on it for free look aiming you can also use the touchpad on it like a regular one. Such a shame that Sony and developers never utilized the gyroscope or touchpad outside of gimmicks.

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#42 Ezekiel43
Member since 2017 • 2035 Posts

@xantufrog: Yeah. My bad.

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#43 uninspiredcup
Member since 2013 • 36527 Posts

@ezekiel43 said:

@xantufrog: Yeah. My bad.

You can delete posts. Unless you wish to leave it there for posterity.

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#44 nintendoboy16
Member since 2007 • 36794 Posts

Eh... if there is a way they can fix it, fine! The first one was not designed so great, so I stick to XBOX controllers for my PC games that need controllers.

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#45 xantufrog  Moderator
Member since 2013 • 11939 Posts

I really like my new Steam controller! Can't see myself going back to any other controller on PC unless I need a better d-pad.

I spent time this evening setting up a great profile for KOTOR, and it's a really nice way to play the game

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#46 osan0
Member since 2004 • 15509 Posts

hmm just thinking about this V2 some more: maybe they are just looking to make a controller more suited to VR also. i.e. it will be the steam controller just it will be better integrated into a VR environment.

If you haven't used VR: basically if you try to use a normal controller with a VR headset then you cant see the controller. So if you try to use it in something like elite dangerous: well you better know how everything is mapped out in advance. This is because the VR setup can't see the controller basically.

with a VR controller like the index controller this isn't an issue. The controller is modelled and positioned in your virtual environment. I can even see the buttons virtually move down when i press them.

So maybe the new stuff for the V2 (assuming it is real) is just to make the steam controller more VR friendly too.

Though using the track pad for camera control while in VR would be...er....disorientating. :S.

I haven't played a VR game with a normal controller so i don't know if this is already solved in some way. but last i heard it can be a faff.

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NoodleFighter

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#47 NoodleFighter
Member since 2011 • 10630 Posts

@osan0: Interesting you mention VR because I remember seeing a video a while ago on the Steam controller with VR. This guy was able to reduce motion sickness with the Steam controller. The Steam controller could be a great inbetween for VR and standard controllers. Since it has a gyroscope that can be used for aiming and other motions like steering plus you could probably have the touchpad inputs be seen as individual arms and have the controllers position be detected with the gyro or whatever index tech they put on it to simulate reaching around. The Steam controller also has an on screen mini menus that can pop up in game

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osan0

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#48 osan0
Member since 2004 • 15509 Posts

@NoodleFighter: hmm interesting. I would have thought that using the trackpad as any sort of camera control would be a disaster in VR but it could be an improvement. maybe its the slower constant rotation that a traditional controller gives that causes motion sickness.

I don't know how the human body works...it's weird.

on a side note.....notch up another VR game to play. Looks like fun. Thanks :).