Valve released a new Portal themed demo called Moondust with a purpose to showcase their Knuckles EV2 which are virtual reality controllers. The new controllers are going to ship out to hundreds of developers for testing according to Valve.
While the controllers were in development, Valve made a tech demo as a purpose to validate design decisions and as a sandbox to test potential game mechanics with the new inputs. And what a demo it is, because I'm sure I'm not the only one who's hoping to see Valve go back into some Portalistics. But, I digress.
The user plays as a giant robot assisting Aperture Science on finding the conversion glue that is used in Portal technology. Valve said, "This demo utilizes all of the new inputs of Knuckles EV2 and showcases a few new game mechanics enabled by the new controller."
Moondust lets users play four mini games, which are Rock Crushing, Space Station Construction, allowing players to craft a moon base and BuggyBuddy, which let's you drive a moon buggy.
According to Valve the creation of the buggy scene was the hardest due to different schemes, mapping and remapping the buttons. Valve said that every playtester liked something different and while Moondust isn't perfect, it is the best current demonstration of all the features Knuckles EV2 have to offer.
Valve claims that the ten finger sensors built in Kunckles EV2 offer users the most natural throwing mechanic in VR. They explained how that works in their steam community post, saying "the capsense for finger poses and force sense for grip strength can be utilised to make throwing more accurate than ever, but they also increase the complexity of the release calculations."
Valve already started shipping out hundreds of Knuckles EV2 developer kits to game developers on 21 June. The demo is available on Steam although you won't be able to play it unless you've got an EV2 controller. The exact retail release date is unknown at the moment, but we should know soon enough.