[Feature Request] Launch in oculus mode

@sweviver Would it be possible to add a check box to each game when launching to launch in oculus mode?

so it would create the steam_appid.txt file for you and place it in the game folder?


This is interesting. So you mean this is possible for most/all SteamVR games by simply adding the steam_appid.txt with the correct ID? Do we need to call argument -oculus as well?

We can definitely add this, but first need to confirm if this actually works for most games or just some?


wait, why are you asking me this? I thought this was common knowledge for Pitool.


The game has to support the oculus sdk.

but when you drop that file app_id.txt in with the games steam appid inside it and then add it to pitool as a custom game.

Pitool will launch it without running steam VR. it will run it directly.

People have been doing this for a while because apparently oculus games often dont require PP on.

when steam does.

Im not sure how you are launching the games but you night need to ask the pitool devs how that feature works.


This is really great news, many thanks! I knew it was possible in SOME games and sims, but not all (or most of them) :slight_smile: I have to do some tests today!

We could easily fix this and make it automated WITHOUT having to re-import the game in the “import” section. We could simply implement this for any (already imported) SteamVR game in the PE library.,


  1. Create the file and put it in game directory (if desired)
  2. Upon Launch, having a check-box “Run in Oculus Mode” or whatever
  3. If checkbox enabled, the script looks for the file. If exists, it launches the game with OVRLauncher instead of SteamVR (which will automatically work thanks to the file).
  4. Game starts in Oculus mode with OVRLauncher.

D*mn, now you got me excited man, let us doo some testings here today!


I’ve never given this much thought as the only Oculus game I have is Lone Echo. I remember someone tried to get ED to run without PP, which would be great, but they had problems with the launcher login. Does this mean it could be made to work somehow?

I looked up this list of Steam games with Oculus SDK support. Unfortunately no NMS or Squadrons.

Great! This would be great as it will gove us the flexibility to run games without steamVR that don’t need it.

It was not. I didn’t know, and in fact, I won’t fully believe it until I try it. :wink:

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This is a Def NoBrainer
Make it so pimax.

I see one catch here. Define directly please. Does Oculus runtime (the window and such) need to be running? Because if not, that would be absolutely fantastic for days when neither SteamVR nor Oculus are working, or when offline.

Here’s an example:

As the guides (there’s a few) were done by @park here in the forum I guess that’s why @drowhunter thought it was something everyone (here) knew… :wink:

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We gave this some testing time yesterday, unfortunately with quite disappointing results. Many games we tried didn’t work this way. Either they just showed black screen (a bunch of Unity games), or they never started in Oculus mode. Elite Dangerous did start actually but instantly after the splash screen prompted (in VR) about unsuccessful login, and once we clicked OK, it terminated or closed the window.

Due to the random results and quite a majority of games doesn’t supporting this, I think we will wait with the “Oculus mode checkbox” implementation I mentioned above for every single SteamVR game. It would just confuse people, since its roughly a 70% chance it wont work for their games anyway. The mode can of course still be used if the game is manually Imported in PE.


I wonder if a SteamVR wrapper (like ReVive does for OculusSDK) could override SteamVR calls to correct parallel projection before rendering. Maybe the community of developers with the parallel projection problem is too small to come up with these solutions. Unfortunately we are still the only headset with canted displays

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I remember this being reported before. But I’m curious about one thing, if I launch ED from PiTool, it launches SVR and then automatically loads and confirms the launcher without me needing to press the Play button on the monitor - therefore bypassing the need to interact with it in VR.

In theory, if SVR can do this, then other systems such as PE can do this as well?

As @SweViver mentioned, we successfully launched ED in VR mode directly, without the need for SVR. ED requires an account that is validated by its launcher. For Steam accounts, Steam Client needs to be available and provide the required information to ED. In our tests so far, ED could never be logged into, when directly launched in VR (either from PE or command line), without Steam and therefore it was not playable.

Users can currently add games that they wish to run differently, in the “Imported” section and configure them. In future versions of PE we will be improving this feature where necessary and add a few other capabilities to it.

Meanwhile all your constructive theories and solutions on this matter are welcome.


I guess the million dollar question is how to automatically authenticate when you don’t have Steam. I am not sure of the answer sorry :slight_smile:

Pre-VR I used the standalone version bought direct from Frontier, which is still available, but I never used it with VR to test. This requires a Frontier login on the launcher.


"Frontier Support

Hi CMDR, you can still purchase a non-Steam version of the game via the Frontier Store. Once this is done, you should be able to download the Standalone Launcher from the My Digital Products section of your account."

Interestingly I spotted a mention of a keyless login for Steam, which applies to Steam versions since April 2019:

“So I can run elite dangerous directly from it´s folder WITHOUT launching steam client, right ?”

“Yes, but you might need to log in with your FD credentials, not your Steam credentials.”

"It is possible if you bought your game directly from Frontier, or from Steam before this April.

If you bought it after the new keyless Steam login has been implemented, according to the FAQ you can’t use a game launcher directly."

So sorry, this doesn’t yet answer the question, but may shed more light on the possibility of automatically logging in to the launcher without Steam credentials.

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I just had an idea regarding this. maybe @arminelec would be interested too.

Do you remember OpenComposite?

What if you installed this via PE into the game folder translates all OpenVR calls into oculus ones. Kind of like an “Reverse-Revive”

if the game was being turned into an oculus one then you should in theory be able to lanch it with Pimaxes oculus mode.

It sounds weird. A Wrapper to unwrap a steamVR game to an oculus game and then put through a pimax wrapper to emulate an oculus game to open vr … lol

OpenVR → LibOVR → Pimax ->OpenVR

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also, is there any news on fixing this steamapp_id trick in the newest pitools? it stopped working for project cars at some point last year , since then ive had to use steamvr and parallel projection