VR Gun Stocks: Essential Guide to Improve VR Shooting Experiences by@Limarc

VR Gun Stocks: Essential Guide to Improve VR Shooting Experiences

VR gun stocks make virtual reality shooting games much more immersive, physically demanding, and realistic. They can improve your aim drastically and give you an edge over your opponents. In this article, we’ll talk about the top-of-the-line ForceTube Rifle, from ProTubeVR, as well as the PlayStation VR Aim controller. The ForceTube VR Haptic Gun Stock and the MagTube Rifle are arguably the best VR gun stock available on the market today. While using it, your hands are still suspended in mid-air in front of you and the experience feels like shooting games you’d play in an arcade.
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@Limarc
Limarc Ambalina

Hacker Noon's VP of Growth by day, VR Gamer and Anime Binger by night

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VR gun stocks make virtual reality shooting games much more immersive, physically demanding, and realistic. On top of that, they can improve your aim drastically and give you an edge over your opponents. However, this greatly depends on the type of VR rifle stock you have, what game you’re playing, and how well the stock can be calibrated to match your in-game settings. 

In this article, we’ll talk about the top-of-the-line ForceTube Rifle, from ProTubeVR, as well as the PlayStation VR Aim controller. 

What is a VR Gun Stock?

Put simply, a VR gun stock or VR rifle stock is a gaming accessory that holds your controllers in place to simulate the pistol grip and foregrip of a rifle. It should be noted that these accessories are optional and are not required to play shooting games. 

If it’s optional, why bother buying one?

In virtual reality military simulators like Pavlov or Contractor$, players need to keep their hands suspended in the air to mimic the holding of a rifle or other weapons in the game. 

While this system is ok, it feels rather clunky and makes it harder for players to keep their aim steady. VR rifle stocks greatly improve aiming stability and also make games both more immersive, competitive, and enjoyable.

The Blueprint of a VR Gun Stock

Depending on the company, the exact design will vary greatly. However, most stocks usually have the following fundamental parts:

  1. Two places to mount each VR controller
  2. A stock to place against your shoulder for added stability
  3. A strap to hoist the stock over your shoulders (optional)

It’s vital that the mounting positions of the controllers don’t obstruct the VR headset’s view of the controllers. 

Regardless of the design, it’s also important that the controllers are easily removed and put back into place. Most VR shooters require players to manually reload weapons and therefore one hand needs to essentially be “free” to move on and off the weapon in-game. 

The PlayStation VR Aim Controller

Definitely one of the cheapest VR gun stocks on the market, you can find these anywhere from $30 USD to $80 USD on used marketplaces. However, they are somewhat rare and are getting harder and harder to find these days. 

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Rifle stocks for the Oculus, HTC, and Valve headsets are simply a mount in which you place your controllers. However, the PlayStation VR Aim Controller has a built-in move controller at the barrel of the rifle stock. 

Is the PlayStation VR Gun Stock Worth it?

While this is a drastic improvement from the DualShock controller and the regular move controllers, the design falls short and misses the point of VR gun stocks. 

One of the biggest benefits of rifle stocks in VR is to improve comfort and aim. However, the Aim Controller doesn’t even have an actual stock to place against your shoulder. While using it, your hands are still suspended in mid-air in front of you and the experience feels similar to shooting games you’d play in an arcade (if you even remember what those are), rather than an immersive VR experience.

If you have the PSVR and you can find this Aim Controller for cheap (Under $50 - $60 USD), then I’d say it’s worth a purchase if you play PSVR regularly. If you aren’t hardcore into shooting games on the PlayStation VR, I’d say don’t bother.

The ForceTube VR Haptic Gun Stock and MagTube Rifle

On the completely opposite side of the spectrum, the ForceTube VR Haptic Gun Stock and the MagTube Rifle by ProTubeVR are arguably the best VR gun stocks available on the market today.

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Due to its innovative design, The ForceTube stock is fully customizable. You can use a single Allen key to adjust the length of the tubes and move the controller mounts forward and backward. This allows you to adjust the stock to match your favorite guns in your favorite games. 

Most importantly, the ForceTube rifle stock features powerful magnetic mounts allowing you to remove the controller from the stock with a minimal amount of pressure and easily snap the controller back into place after you reload or throw a grenade.

It also comes with a shoulder strap for added stability and safety. 

Haptic Feedback

The reason The ForceTube is pricier than other models is that it comes with a special haptic stock that allows you to feel each shot you take in the game. Best of all, it features native support for many games and it is fairly simple to set up both on PCVR and the Oculus Quest (which I used to test the device). 

Without a doubt, the spectacular design and haptic feedback of the ForceTube gun stock make it the best option for the most immersive VR shooting experience.

The MagTube Rifle

The MagTube VR gun stock features everything mentioned in the ForceTube except for the haptic stock. 

It has a simple plastic stock which gives you the same stability you get with the ForceTube, minus the haptic feedback.

This is the best option for those looking to purchase a gun stock on a budget. If you are playing virtual reality shooting games for long periods of time, sometimes the haptic feedback can cause discomfort in some players, so don’t feel like you’re missing out by going for this cheaper option. 

VR Headset Compatability

ProTubeVR cuts no corners and has built their accessories in a way to make them compatible for every major VR headset on the market.

Their VR accessories support the following headsets:

  1. Oculus Rift CV1
  2. Oculus Quest
  3. Oculus Quest 2
  4. HTC Vive
  5. Valve Index
  6. Samsung Odyssey
  7. PSVR 
  8. Generic Windows Mixed Reality
  9. HP Reverb G2 

I hope this brief guide to VR gun stocks helped you understand the value they bring into the VR market and how they can help you have more immersive experiences.

Disclaimer: I have not been paid in any way to write this review, but I was sent the ForceTube and MagTube Rifle to review for this article.

For more VR reading, be sure to check out:

  1. Haptic Feedback is the Next Step in Virtual Reality
  2. How to Tell if a GPU is VR-Ready for Oculus Link and Steam VR
  3. The Making of The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners - Skydance Interactive Podcast

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