Steam’s HTC Vive Sucks: Here’s Why

It’s not the hardware. It’s not the fact that a year after release, there are still only novelty games worth playing. It’s the Steam VR service itself, which NEVER WORKS. The ‘compositor is not fullscreen’ bug is omnipresent, popping up with a link to fix the issue which does. not. work. This is something which should have been patched months ago, but Steam VR is too busy pushing out unit breaking updates every other week to bother to fix what they’ve previously broken.

Every time you use the HTC Vive it’s a magical journey into what they’ve screwed up this time. Is one of my controllers in need of a firmware update? How about my tracking stations? Will I need to find the controller cord and plug my controllers in to have a chat with the PC? Will one of the tracking stations just not track? Or will the compositor remain firmly not fullscreen, screwing the entire system into complete uselessness?

The compositor is not fullscreen bug most often appears when the Vive has been activated before Steam VR. So deactivating the entire unit by quitting Steam VR sometimes fixes it. But the Vive software should not be this fundamentally buggy and broken a full year after it was first released.

This is some early access, alpha testing BS. The hardware of the Vive is being let down by shoddy software. It shouldn’t break in some new and interesting way every time you try to play it. It should be like every other piece of gaming equipment, be it console or PC. You turn the damn thing on, you open your game, you play. You shouldn’t be worried about synchronizing the software of five different pieces of hardware plus whatever nonsense the developers have decided to patch your insanity into oblivion.

I played my Vive an hour ago. When I tried to restart it now, I have the following issues:\

Compositor not fullscreen (not fixable in the normal way.)

Headset needs updated drivers.

Controllers not paired.

Base stations not detected.

The VIVE is like a computer which takes itself apart when your back is turned then sits there and smirks while you try to make it even slightly usable. This sucks. It sucks. And Steam’s attitude to the people who laid out a grand or two for this piece of machinery which mostly comes in handy for pretending to hit glowing orbs, sucks.


It is exactly this good.

The Vive is everything I ever wanted. Everything I ever dreamed. I have never been so happy to smash my hand into the wall by accident, or to feel vaguely nauseous after 0.2 seconds of emulated Minecraft VR (Minecraft may be the ultimate VR test. It may also replace that swingy arm simulator thing they use for training astronauts. And all other emetics.)

The price has dropped by 25% already, just nine months after release, and a few months ahead of titles like Fallout 4 for VR are due to be released. Fallout 4 bored the brains out of me (if you’re careless enough to let a mad scientist steal your baby, you may as well let him keep him) but I can’t wait to stand in the wasteland of infinite radiant AI quests and test my mettle against all the enemies which will have no chance against me because I will be toggling god mode just as soon as the game loads.

The best game thus far in my week of playthrough is two different games.


A guy lost 50 pounds playing soundboxing, I just lost my mind, flailing around my office like someone whose seizure medication just wore off. If I have one complaint its that there aren’t enough filters on the beatmaps yet, and apparently most soundboxers just can’t get enough of manga music, so scrolling through endless high pitched songs danced by cartoons gets tedious for those of us who are looking for good solid beats, like EYE OF THE TIGER. Leaderboards make things fun, climbing to the top of the Soundboxing dominance heirarchy with your punching fists.


Very cartoony, very simple, very good. There are lots of shooting games available for VR and most of them are visually impressive and mechanically lacking. This game strikes that and reverses it, and holy heck is it fun tossing T-bone cuts of meat into hordes of zombie cut outs to blast them away with grenades and other unlockables.

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