Oculus buys Carbon Design, the team behind the Xbox 360 controller and original Kinect
Oculus is continuing its quest to assemble a PC gaming super team, announcing Monday that the company would acquire Carbon Design Group.
Carbon is a respected design firm best known for creating the look and feel of the Xbox 360 controller and the original Kinect camera.
Carbon's work on the 360 controller is particularly notable in the context of joining a PC gaming super team. The 360 gamepad is widely hailed as one of the best console control devices and is the go-to gamepad for PC gamers. Bringing a high-level of hardware design sense to the burgeoning industry of virtual reality gaming should help Oculus in its quest to create an appealing mass market device—VR will need appealing input devices to match the headsets if it's ever going to become popular with the public.
Carbon will join Oculus' product engineering group, but will remain in its current studio in the Seattle, working with the Oculus R&D department based in Redmond, Washington.
Although Carbon is just now becoming part of the Oculus team, the two companies are not strangers. For almost a year, Carbon and Oculus have been collaborating on "multiple unannounced projects," Oculus said in a blog post.
Beyond having a solid hardware design team in the bag, Oculus has been assembling some big talent in recent months. Legendary game programmer John Carmack has been with Oculus for some time. Other notable members of the Oculus team include Jason Joltman, Valve's former Steam chief; Naughty Dog co-founder and former THQ president Jason Rubin; Michael Abrash, a VR expert from id; and Atman Binstock, who used to head up Valve's VR projects.