[Gear VR] Virtual Head Model Support?

Heya VR Peeps!

I’m successfully using UE4 on Gear VR for my game and have hit a couple of snags with the current release (I’m using 4.7.4). I wanted to start with virtual head model support. From what I can tell this hasn’t been implemented yet for Gear VR in UE4.

I know that the various Oculus Rift guides around here such as talk about setting the “HeadModel_v2” parameter. Although in taking a look at the code here (see FOculusRiftHMD::LoadFromIni()) I would argue that the “HeadModel_v2” isn’t even supported for the Rift (which would be useful for the DK1).

Looking through the same Gear VR settings code at (in FGearVR::LoadFromIni()) there also doesn’t appear to be support for virtual head model settings either.

From my own testing it appears that a virtual head model is not on by default. You can check this yourself by rolling your head and see the view come with you rather than peak around objects. A virtual head model is critical to improving the user’s experience when the HMD doesn’t support positional tracking (like the Gear VR).

Has anyone been able to get a virtual head model working, either through the engine or rolling your own solution? Can we expect a virtual head model to be implemented in UE4 for Gear VR in the near future, such as for the Mobile VR Jam?


  • Dave

I just use a headless “third person model” and position the camera where the head should be.

In this case I’m not referring to a 3D model of a head or body. In fact, in this case I’m not using a physical representation of the player’s avatar at all. By ‘virtual head model’ I’m referring to the mathematical modeling of how the human head actually rotates, and how that is applied to UE4’s camera (actually the view matrix, I suppose) when dealing with a HMD that only has a rotational input. Our heads don’t pivot where our eye is, and taking this into account makes for a much better VR experience.

Unity games on the Gear VR store provide for this (such as Hero Bound: First Steps) and it was useful back with the DK1. In looking at the UE4 code I cannot see where this is set up, and from my own experience of deploying a UE4 game to Gear VR a virtual head model isn’t being used by default.

  • Dave

Ahh I understand what you are saying now. I use a Camera Boom to achieve that effect in terms of pitch and I plan to use blueprints to shift the players upper body as they rotate so they can look around corners but as for realistic head rolling I am not sure how I can help you out there.