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Want To Unlock A New Level Of Immersion In Your First Person Shooters? The ATOC Gaming Gun Has You Covered

Lately, there's been a huge push in the video games space towards a little something known as immersion. The idea is that developers no longer want people to simply play their games; they want them to experience the games. One of the ways they're doing this is by taking a close look at how games are controlled.

Let's be honest, guys. If we're shooting for immersion, traditional video game controllers aren't exactly made for it (and the whole mouse-and-keyboard control scheme is even worse). Sure, they might work very well for certain titles, but there's never really a sense that you're a part of any game's world. You're ultimately just some putz sitting in front of a screen, watching things play out before you. As such, we've seen a whole host of peripherals designed to address this - with varying degrees of success.

This week, one such device caught my eye. It's called the ATOC Gaming Gun (the name stands for Advanced Tactical Oriented Controller). Designed for PC, Xbox 360, and Playstation 3; it'll allow people to experience their shooters in a way they never have before: by making them get up and move around. 

In a way, that kills two birds with one stone - lately, we've been made all-too-aware of the hazards involved with a sedentary lifestyle, and there are few activities which require less physical activity than playing video games. According its creator, that's completely intentional. ATOC isn't just designed to augment one's gaming experience; it's also designed with stamina, reaction time, and rational thinking in mind. 

"If you're coming home after a day of work and you want to relax while gaming that's fine," explains a FAQ. "But the ATOC is not meant for that. It's more like a training session because even if the weight of the ATOC will be optimized, after an hour of gaming your arms could get heavy." 

Rather interesting, no? While ATOC is hardly the first peripheral designed with the fitness of its user in mind, 

But how does it control?

Apparently, very well. Players will look around and move in-game by shifting their weight around; their character's field of vision will be displayed on ATOC's integrated twelve-inch monitor. Everything else will be controlled through a collection of twenty different buttons, all of which can be customized in function. I've included a video below, so you can get some idea of how the ATOC is used. 

Currently, the ATOC is still in preproduction, and both hardware and software still need to be optimized. The research necessary to do this is going to cost a fair bit of money - which is why ATOC's designer, Michael Hermann, will soon be hosting a campaign on Indiegogo to gather the necessary funds.

I'll post a link here when the campaign launches, so that those of you who are interested can contribute. In the meantime, you can find out more about the peripheral by visiting the official website

As for me, I want to see this thing paired up with the ARAIG Gaming Vest and the Virtuix Omni Treadmill. Just try and tell me all of that stuff together wouldn't make for one of the most incredible gaming experiences ever.

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Nicholas Greene
Nick's Games Haven
InventorSpot.com
Follow me on Twitter @OmniscientSpork