A treadmill might not be the first piece of hardware you might think of when it comes to PC gaming, but that'll change pretty fast when I put two little letters in front of it: VR Treadmills are one of the next logical steps in the evolution of home VR gaming.
VR treadmills usually have an omnidirectional base the player can run on, often in special shoes, while being harnessed into a connected arm. They're hefty pieces of kit that have the potential to really up your VR game, but often at a high price, which is why we're thankful for Black Friday sales.
The Kat Walk C2 and C2+ model treadmills by Kat VR are a few hundred dollars off as part of the Black Friday sales. You can get the cheaper C2 treadmill for $1,099 USD, down from $1,398, or the more advanced C2+ with an integrated seat and haptic feedback for $1,299 compared to its usual $1,598. A perfect deal for if you've ever wanted to walk through The Witcher 3 on a treadmill (opens in new tab).
The deal also includes a choice between an extra pair of the shoes needed to use the treadmill, or a Kat Nexus Adapter. The shoes are the pricier item, going for $149 a pair. The Kat Nexus adapter would also be a great addition, as it allows for compatibility with more systems, including standalone ones like Meta Quest 2 and hopefully the Meta Quest 3 (opens in new tab). It's on sale too for $69 USD, so it's probably worth picking that up standalone and choosing the shoes.
KAT Walk C 2+ | Omnidirectional VR Treadmill | Haptic Feedback |
$1,598 $1,299 at Kat VR (save $299) (opens in new tab)
Omnidirectional treadmills are cool VR accessories that can turn about one metre square of space into a truly infinite play area. This one is on sale, and you can get either an extra pair of special shoes or an adapter to go with it.
Both the C2 and C2+ units boast an authentic and natural walking experience that's easy to learn in VR. With these Kat Walks you should be able to run, sprint, strafe, crouch, jump, and even move backwards safely. Thanks to being tethered in one space to the treadmill itself, there's little risk, even when you can't see.
These are all things that I've always felt VR kind of lacked to get the whole experience. Even in free-roaming VR kits, jumping and moving too quickly has always been dangerous. Being put in a cool VR world and then being told you can't run around and jump can really take the fun and freedom out of the experience. Plus, being more active makes you more likely to enjoy the fitness benefits of VR gaming.
If you're not ready to commit to a whole treadmill, the Kat loco S sensors (opens in new tab) are also on sale for $169, down from $229. These are a series of clips combined with a base station that let you walk on the spot in VR. It's definitely not as cool as a treadmill, but a much more affordable option that should give you a bit more freedom in your space.