World of Warcraft is a massively multiplayer online role-playing game. First released in 2004, and by 2017, WoW, as the fans like to call it, had earned over $9.23 billion in income, making it one of the highest-grossing video game franchises of all time. In 2019, Blizzard launched a vanilla variation of the World of Warcraft Classic game, permitting gamers to experience the base game before its growth.
While virtual reality (VR) is a computer-generated environment that can be interacted with to simulate real and remote places, personal experiences, or fantasy worlds, it has history back from 1939 with a stereoscopic visual simulator, a device that allows the user to simulate three-dimensional vision through two differently focused but overlapping, projections from either eye.
The Best of Both World
There has never been a phenomenon like World of Warcraft or VR (virtual reality). Naturally, the mix of two would produce something extraordinary out of this world in its own right. But until today, there’s no official support from Blizzard, the creator of WoW, despite pleading demands from fans and blooming VR-supported MMORPG. Even worse, any modification to the game on any public server is considered cheating, and any player doing so will be banned.
There’s some good news: nothing stopped you from doing mod in private servers. Therefore modded game patches and third-party apps are blossoming so fans alike can experience the world of Azeroth or Dalaran like never before. Imagine flying through Blackrock mountain, Murloc villages, Booty Bay, ah the feeling.
The catch is they need to be patient because Blizzard has no sign of backing up the project. Most modification is still clunky and relies on heavy customization, limited to spectating the in-game world only, with no combat mode at the moment. Let’s check out what makes the World of Warcraft VR mod!
Get Down to the Setup
First of all, WoW works out of the box with stereoscopic 3D. This is akin to what you see in cinemas. If you have a 3D monitor with the glasses, then you can see it in 3D.
With the VR, you will need an app called VorpX that can enable you to mimic that 3D screen. They will arrange the sense of depth, with some reported it makes WoW look like an arcade game, you will see characters and environment from the new, unexpected perspective.
Myself is a bit surprised by the sizes as I was not expecting to be this dramatic. It was like playing the game all over again.
VorpX itself is a 3D-driver for DirectX9, up to DirectX11 video games specifically geared towards VR devices like Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. VorpX enables you to experience modern-day DX10/DX11 video games like Call of Duty, GTA, Mirror’s Edge, Battlefield, Skyrim, and many others on your VR headset.
Pay attention to the settings.
It’s the most important thing to make the most out of the experience for the World of Warcraft VR mod. Set the FOV to 120° if possible. In several WoW versions, FoV is maxed at 60°-70°, so culling is unavoidable. VorpX officially supports the world of Warcraft. You will find a profile called “world of warcraft/vorpx” in their cloud. As a starting point, you can use this and adjust as you like. Always launch the game from the WoW launcher. Older versions played on custom servers may not work correctly. Other things to note:
- Enable expert settings in the menu
- Make sure to select DirectX11. New AAA games with DirectX12 are not supported yet at this time of writing.
- Sometimes you will need to go back to Cinema Mode to align the view properly, with some reported “fly-through” the texture in the Geometry 3D mode.
- Configure the movement sensitivity properly to your comfort level. The default sensitivity is rather low.
- Check if it can reach a minimum of 60fps to minimize the nausea effect caused by the movement.
- Need to configure the field of view in-game settings, you can try the below macros:
- WorldFrame: SetPoint (“TOPLEFT”, 0, -150) WorldFrame: SetPoint (“BOTTOMRIGHT”, 0, 150)
- You may need to enable MouseLookLock for movement/viewing control and also check out this mod, this and this.
If you still have difficulties playing properly, try this troubleshooting guide:
- Antivirus programs could be blocking for a false alarm. Try to remove them first for testing purposes.
- If your machine is bound to dual-GPU, check which one you are using, they might be conflicted.
- Not all WoW versions reported working, especially the older expansion ( the Frozen Throne, Wrath of the Lich King, etc.). There are cases you need to rename the launcher to wow.exe because that’s what VorpX recognizes or creating new profiles altogether.
- Check if VorpX’s gamepad override is enabled (need to be disabled) if the controls are jarring.
You can also find cheaper alternatives with phones and cardboard. First, download Trinus VR, which has a desktop part and an android app. Trinus VR Lite is the app on the play store.
Now you can install both, plug your S7 into a PC with a USB, and push connect on the Trinus (both on pc and the app). Trinus will be streaming your existing active screen to your telephone.
Next, fire up WoW, put it in Window mode (otherwise, it didn’t work). Fine-tune your video settings, so you run at around 60fps all the time. Otherwise, it stutters, and that eliminates the experience. Next, create a macro as follows:
/ run if IsMouselooking() then MouselookStop() SetBinding(” BUTTON1″,” CAMERAORSELECTORMOVE”) SetBinding(” BUTTON2″,” TURNORACTION”) else MouselookStart() SetBinding(” BUTTON1″,” STRAFELEFT”) SetBinding(” BUTTON2″,” STRAFERIGHT”) end
Bind that macro to a key (I just put it on my spell bar at 1, easy to reach). This macro provides you mouselook. The Trinus app works in a method where your head movement mimics mouse movements.
List of VR Devices and Apps Reported Working
Not limited to VR headgears, but also 360° treadmill:
- Virtuix Omni
- HTC Vive
- Samsung S7 (Archos or Cardboard) with Trinus VR
- Oculus Rift
- Tridef 3D (alternative to VorpX)
- KAT VR Omni-Directional VR Treadmills
- Omnideck 360 Degree VR Treadmill
While waiting for official support from Blizzard, let’s not lose hope for the new technology in our classic game. In the meantime, you can enjoy the World of Warcraft VR mod. You can set from the easiest one using VorpX (but more expensive) to a more affordable one using Tridef and your phones with Google Cardboard (but more tweak). Enjoy, Dioniss aca! 😉