What is the KAT WALK Mini (KVM)?

Kat Walk
Just the coolest VR accessory available today is all! Seriously, it is a VR Omni-directional Treadmill (ODT), which is a new way to move within virtual reality (VR). Unlike an exercise treadmill, the bottom of the KWM is not scrolling, but rather is a smooth concave platform on which you walk or run by sort of half-stepping or sliding your feet—i.e., you “KAT walk.”

Your walking movements are translated real-time in VR, so whatever you do on the KVM, you are doing in VR. Super cool, super fun.

Ok, what is “KAT walking”?

Beside a term we just made up, it is intended to explain that when using the KVM, your legs become the controller for movement in the game or application. This means smaller steps for most adults, learning to strafe by either stepping one foot right or left, and moving backwards by stepping one foot back. It is simple, and to really get the hang of the movements takes anywhere from 5 to 30 minutes.

Can I Really Run on the KVM?

On the KAT WALK Mini, a FPS game no longer means First Person Shooter, it means “First Person Shredder”!!! Tighten the harness, lean forward and blast off!!! It is sort of like speed skating in real life, but your VR avatar is running fast (and can get winded, e.g., The Forest). And you’ll be winded too!

Indeed, while technically not a fitness product, you can work up a sweat and elevated heart rate in no time. On the other hand, if you just want to walk or sneak around, say in Pavlov, you can do that too.

What Makes The KVM Unique?

After almost 6 years of R&D and refinements to the KAT Walk, Junior, and Premium ODTs, the KVM represents KAT VR’s flagship product. So what makes it so great compared to the rest? Let’s explore….

1. Design, Design, Design. The KWM’s unique design, optimized for freedom of movement, is what makes it stand out among other similar products on the market. Competitive devices have serious design limitations such as rings or other rigid barriers around the waist of the user that can limit the range of movement and also pose serious safety hazards. Ever get a little carried away playing Gorn?!!?
Other ODTs also suffer from an over-reliance on straps, harnesses and other modes of restraint for the extremities and the torso, while the the KWM only requires a single harness for the waist and lets the arms and legs of the user completely free.

2. The Tech. KAT VR has developed a state of the art motion tracking algorithm for its sensor system that allows for almost zero delay and therefore lets the user enjoy a very precise motion tracking effect that translates into smooth, reliable movement into the virtual world.

3. Games, Man, Games! KAT VR has developed almost 20 games designed specifically to take full advantage of the KVM. These are FPS and adventure games mostly. In addition, the KWM is compatible with all Free Locomotion VR games, such as Pavlov, Onward, TESV: Skyrim, Resident Evil 7, PAYDAY2 and so on.