Designworks, the design innovation studio for the BMW Group, has unveiled its concept for an advanced gaming chair designed to bring an immersive physical experience for the gamers at the first-ever BMW Esports Boost event. Called the Rival Rig gaming chair, it is the perfect bridge between the physical world and the virtual world – giving the users a functional sensory input while being utterly comfortable. An ideal proposition for streamers and Esports professionals indeed. The idea is to analyze the player’s movements and adapt to their sitting position for a weightless feeling sans any physical stress during long hours of casual or professional gaming. This adaptive stance leads to sustained performance of the player not limited by physical or mental stress.
Rival Rig is embedded with sensors that detect the rise in body temperature and then beam cool air to the particular area. They call it the Microclimate Control System. Likewise, if there is too much pressure on the arms, the armrests lower automatically to eliminate any pressure points – a feature dubbed as the Adaptive Seating made possible with the embedded pneumatic air pads and electro-mechanical actuators. Designworks worked with gamers and athletes to understand body posture and the different actions and moods they are going through during gaming. The result is different modes like ease mode for relaxed posture or the boost mode, which brings the chair forward, and the table lowered and angled for immersive gameplay. The chair also has the massage function to release any stress build-up in the muscles with extended gaming stints. In conjunction with the AI-enabled algorithm, all this brings automated control to the chair, allowing players to concentrate on their gameplay.
According to Holger Hampf, President of Designworks, the team’s goal was to “create the most comfortable seating, hand posture, and head movement situation, that allow the gamer to immerse fully.” Inspiration for the project came from fields where split-second decisions have to be made – like in spacecraft and Formula 1. Holger Hampf added that they adapted learning from these fields to the microscopic level, and it was all about millimeters rather than centimeters,” in design perfection. The led lighting of the chair adapts to the environment of the in-game action for the perfect immersive environment. How the Rig is articulating also allows the audience (online and live) to be part of the action – for good bonding between the gaming athletes and spectators.
The gaming chair will be open source for adding new features and allowing game studios to tailor the in-game experience. It will also aid in collaboration with the right partners to access the health and sports data to design ergonomic chairs of the future. Rival Rig is truly the onset of immersion via the power of design!