A booth at the annual Tokyo Game Show features a virtual reality girlfriend, delighting visitors but dismaying organizers over virtual groping. Roselle Chen reports.
Virtual reality got a little too real at the Tokyo Game Show, when gamers lined up at one exhibition and got touchy-feely with a mannequin that with VR goggles transformed into a female anime character. The game uses VR technology and a program called 'E-mote' to convert 2-D illustration into 3-D animation, allowing users to feel as if they're actually touching the characters in the game. Sensors built into the mannequin detects touch and the in-game avatar reacts, helping players get a more realistic feel of the female body-shaped mannequin, which they can touch, pet and fondle. Visitors at the booth were amazed with the latest technology. SOUNDBITE: Hiroyasu Ando, Tokyo Game Show visitor, saying (Japanese): "I feel as though I have seen the future. It's going to be possible to fall in love with a virtual girl." SOUNDBITE: Shinichiro Tanabe, Tokyo Game Show visitor, saying (Japanese): "There were times when it felt as if it were real, so that was surprising." Virtual girlfriends are nothing new to the Japanese games market, but developers have embraced the new possibilities of VR technology, bringing gamers one step closer to their dream partners.