Virtual reality looks to be the latest evolution in consumer technology. But one problem that companies are having in early VR environments includes trolling, or online harassment. And Google is attempting to combat this problem through the use of virtual poker dogs.
Much like the famous painting of dogs playing poker against each other, this VR simulation sees you playing online poker against a human opponent, only your avatars are dogs. The big twist is that you both have a small area that you must stay within.
As The Verge reports, if you try to leave this area, your screen will turn black and white, and your opponent won’t be able to see your avatar. A glowing blue bubble will then guide you back to your seat if you wish to keep playing.
The idea is to create a VR poker environment where players won’t get in each other’s faces and/or steal chips.
Aside from the personal space experiment, Google is also experimenting with high-five rewards. Every time that players high-five each other, they’ll see fireworks shoot out followed by a loud slapping sound. In contrast, being aggressive to another VR user doesn’t come with any rewards, which deters people from being rude to each other.
As you can see in the video below, VR poker would create an interesting experience that’s not currently available at major sites like 888 and PokerStars.
Right now, all of the emphasis is on the poker action, rather than treating the game like a virtual environment, where you can walk around a casino, pick up your chips, and hold your cards.
Of course, in the case of Google’s early experiments, it doesn’t look like you’ll be doing much walking until more safeguards are in place for trolling.