As virtual reality becomes more commonplace, we’ll need ways of moving in a virtual world without accidentally crashing into our furniture. Kat VR is hoping it’s up to the challenge via the second-generation of its Kat Walk C VR treadmill.
Originally reported by Road to VR, the Kat Walk C2 is basically an omnidirectional treadmill that allows the user to “freely” move about a virtual environment as naturally as real life. This includes walking, jogging, sprinting, dodging, jumping, kneeling, and other actions you may perform in a game.
Kat VR says that the C2 has one-to-one real time foot tracking using optical sensors with latency less than 10 milliseconds.
There’s also a C2 Plus model that allows the user to sit down. In the YouTube video you can watch below, the company showed a person using the chair attachment to sit down in a virtual car. This would greatly improve immersion during driving games.
As far as VR headset compatibility, Kat VR says that the C2 has universal compatibility with all major headsets and works with all free locomotive games across platforms.
Kat VR launched its original Kat Walk VR treadmill on Kickstarter in 2015. It followed that up with the Kat Walk C in 2020. It’s going to crowdfunding again as it launches the C2 on May 14.
There will be different pricing tiers on Kickstarter:
- Super KATer Extra Early Bird: $698
- Extra Early-Bird: $798
- Early-Bird: $898
- Special Kickstarter Offer: $998
The C2 Plus model, which includes the aforementioned chair and haptics, is sold as an add-on for $200.
While this is expensive, it’s around the same price that the Virtuix Omni launched at. Additionally, the Kat C2 doesn’t require a Microsoft Kinect for spatial awareness. It also seems to track movement much better than the Strider VR treadmill.
That said, The Omni and even the original Kat Walk have found success at the commercial level. Kat VR is hoping to position the C2 for the consumer audience. This would make VR more palatable for people who don’t have large, dedicated spaces for VR movement.
Once the Kickstarter launches for the Kat C2 on May 14, the first units are to be shipped starting in July.