OpenXRInteractionProfile in Godot – Complete Guide

Diving into the world of virtual reality and extended reality development introduces us to an array of new technical concepts that can be a bit daunting at first glance. However, when you break these concepts down, their power to bring intuitive and engaging user experiences into the realm of 3D applications and games becomes clear. When we explore the **OpenXRInteractionProfile** class in **Godot 4**, for instance, we uncover the backbone of how VR and XR devices interact within a digital environment.

What is OpenXRInteractionProfile?

To properly harness the capabilities of XR devices in our virtual spaces, there needs to be a bridge that translates the physical actions of the user into the digital reactions of the game. This is where the **OpenXRInteractionProfile** comes into play. It is a vital Resource class within Godot 4 that defines how VR controllers and other tracked devices interact within the game.

What is it for?

Think of **OpenXRInteractionProfile** as the scheme for how button presses, hand movements, and other inputs are interpreted. It stores the suggested bindings for these actions, ensuring that the XR device correctly communicates with the game using a predefined interaction profile tailored for specific hardware.

Why Should I Learn it?

Understanding how to implement and customize **OpenXRInteractionProfile** not only empowers you to create cross-compatible VR applications but also ensures your projects provide seamless and intuitive user experiences. For developers looking to delve into the rapidly expanding field of VR and XR, mastering this aspect of Godot 4 is essential. It lays the groundwork for engaging gameplay and immersive environments, driving the future of interactive media.

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Setting Up Your XR Environment

Before we delve into the specifics of the OpenXRInteractionProfile, let’s set up a basic XR environment in Godot 4. This acts as the foundation for integrating XR features into our projects.

extends Node

func _ready():
    var xr_interface = ARVRServer.find_interface("OpenXR")
    if xr_interface and xr_interface.initialize():
        get_viewport().arvr = true
        print("Failed to initialize XR interface")

Here, we’re checking for the OpenXR interface and initializing it. If successful, we set the main viewport to be an AR/VR viewport.

Defining Interaction Profiles

Now we’ll define an interaction profile for an XR device. Let’s start by loading the interaction profile within our game.

var interaction_profile = preload("res://OpenXRInteractionProfile.tres")

func _ready():
    var xr_interface = ARVRServer.find_interface("OpenXR")
    if xr_interface and xr_interface.initialize():
        get_viewport().arvr = true
        print("Failed to initialize XR interface or set the interaction profile")

We preload the OpenXRInteractionProfile resource and set it as the interaction profile for the XR interface in our game.

Creating a Custom Interaction Profile

Sometimes, the default interaction profile might not fit our requirements, and we need to create a custom one. Here’s how you can achieve that:

func create_custom_profile():
    var profile =

    # Add your custom action bindings here
    profile.add_action_binding("action_name", "path/to/input")

    return profile

func _ready():
    var custom_profile = create_custom_profile()
    var xr_interface = ARVRServer.find_interface("OpenXR")
    if xr_interface and xr_interface.initialize():
        get_viewport().arvr = true
        print("Failed to initialize XR interface or set the custom interaction profile")

In the snippet above, we create a new instance of the OpenXRInteractionProfile, add our custom action bindings, and then assign it to the XR interface.

Adjusting Action Bindings Dynamically

There could be situations where we’d like to change the action bindings on the fly, for example, to tailor controls to user preferences or for accessibility purposes. Here’s how it’s done:

var custom_profile = preload("res://CustomOpenXRInteractionProfile.tres")

func adjust_bindings(binding_name, new_input_path):
    custom_profile.add_action_binding(binding_name, new_input_path)

func _ready():
    # Initial setup
func on_user_preference_change(preference):
    adjust_bindings("move_forward", preference.forward_input_path)
    adjust_bindings("move_backward", preference.backward_input_path)

Here, we accommodate the user’s preference for the input paths of certain actions, ensuring a personalized interaction experience.

These examples cover the foundations of working with OpenXRInteractionProfiles in Godot 4 for XR development. As you explore further, you’ll unlock the potential to create fine-tuned XR experiences that can adapt to a multitude of devices and user preferences.Integrating actions with the OpenXRInteractionProfile is crucial for responsive and intuitive gameplay in XR environments. Godot’s action system works by mapping inputs to actions which are then used in your code to trigger events. Let’s see how we can utilize this in conjunction with OpenXRInteractionProfile.

First, let’s assume we have an action named “teleport” that we want to bind to a controller button:

func setup_teleport_action(profile):
    profile.add_action_binding("teleport", "/user/hand/right/input/x/click")

This line binds the “x” button click on the right hand controller to the “teleport” action within our profile.

Next, we want to react to the teleport action in our script:

func _process(delta):
    if Input.is_action_just_pressed("teleport"):

In our process loop, we check if the “teleport” action has just been pressed and, if so, we call a function to perform the teleport.

Moving forward, let’s say we wish to handle the case where the user releases the teleport button:

func _process(delta):
    if Input.is_action_just_released("teleport"):

Here, we detect when the teleport action is released, allowing us to end the teleport sequence accordingly.

Let’s manage joystick input for movement. In OpenXR, this involves handling analog input:

func setup_movement_actions(profile):
    profile.add_action_binding("move_forward", "/user/hand/left/input/joystick/y")
    profile.add_action_binding("move_sideways", "/user/hand/left/input/joystick/x")

We bind the y-axis of the joystick on the left hand controller to the “move_forward” action and the x-axis to the “move_sideways” action.

Now, in our _process function, we can check for these analog inputs to control movement:

func _process(delta):
    var forward = Input.get_action_strength("move_forward") - Input.get_action_strength("move_backward")
    var sideways = Input.get_action_strength("move_sideways")
    move_character(forward, sideways)

We calculate the movement strength for each direction by subtracting the action strength of “move_backward” from “move_forward”, and capture the “move_sideways” action strength directly.

Additionally, we might want to cater to different controller types and set up multiple profiles accordingly:

func setup_for_vive_controllers(profile):
    # Bindings for Vive controllers
    profile.add_action_binding("teleport", "/user/hand/right/input/trigger/click")
    # Additional Vive-specific bindings...

func setup_for_oculus_controllers(profile):
    # Bindings for Oculus controllers
    profile.add_action_binding("teleport", "/user/hand/right/input/a/click")
    # Additional Oculus-specific bindings...

Here we create different function setups for Vive and Oculus controllers, adding the appropriate bindings for each type of controller.

Incorporating haptic feedback is another powerful feature. You can bind an output action to a specific input path, which in this case will be the haptic output on the controller:

func setup_haptic_action(profile):
    profile.add_action_binding("haptic_output", "/user/hand/right/output/haptic")

func _process(delta):
    if Input.is_action_just_pressed("teleport"):
        Input.action_start("haptic_output") # This will trigger haptic feedback

Here, we start the “haptic_output” action, which should cause the controller to vibrate, giving physical feedback to the user when they initiate a teleport.

By understanding these examples and aspects of OpenXRInteractionProfile, you can create a robust and user-friendly control scheme for VR applications with Godot 4, allowing for a richer and more immersive VR experience.Let’s explore handling more complex interactions, such as using gestures or combining buttons and axis inputs to trigger actions in your XR games.

Imagine you are developing a game where the player can grab objects by making a fist with their hand controller. This gesture could involve holding down multiple buttons at once.

func setup_grabbing_action(profile):
    profile.add_action_binding("grab", "/user/hand/right/input/grip/force")
    profile.add_action_binding("grab", "/user/hand/right/input/trigger/force")

func _process(delta):
    if Input.get_action_strength("grab") > 0.8: # Assuming both inputs are needed to reach this value
    elif Input.get_action_strength("grab") < 0.1:

The code above creates an action for grabbing that requires a certain amount of force on both the grip and trigger inputs of the right hand controller. Only when this combined force surpasses a threshold do we grab the object.

Now let’s handle a classic XR interaction: turning by swiping on a touchpad or joystick. We can allow users to rotate their view without physically turning around.

func setup_turning_actions(profile):
    profile.add_action_binding("turn_left", "/user/hand/right/input/joystick/x")
    profile.add_action_binding("turn_right", "/user/hand/right/input/joystick/x")

func _process(delta):
    var turn_sensitivity = 0.5
    var turn_signal = Input.get_action_strength("turn_right") - Input.get_action_strength("turn_left")
    if abs(turn_signal) > turn_sensitivity:

Here, the joystick’s horizontal axis is used to signal turning. If the player moves the joystick to the right, the character turns right, and vice versa for the left. The sensitivity threshold helps filter out accidental minor touches.

Next, it’s vital to accommodate players who prefer different handiness. For instance, swapping the primary and secondary hand controller inputs based on the player’s preference:

func swap_hands(profile, primary_hand):
    if primary_hand == "left":

# Call this function based on user settings or preferences
swap_hands(profile, "left") # for left-handed users

By using the set_primary_hand method of the OpenXRInteractionProfile class, we can switch the main input hand, effectively remapping the controls to suit the player’s handedness.

Let’s consider an application where we want to initiate a complex action sequence with a specific controller movement pattern. Such gestures could trigger a ‘magic casting’ feature.

func setup_magic_casting(profile):
    # Assuming we have a custom gesture detection mechanism in place
    profile.add_action_binding("cast_magic", "/user/hand/right/input/detect_magic_gesture")

func _process(delta):
    if Input.is_action_just_pressed("cast_magic"):

In this example, we’re binding a hypothetical custom gesture detection input on the right-hand controller to the “cast_magic” action. The gesture system would be responsible for sending the appropriate signal when it recognizes the magic casting gesture.

Lastly, ensuring a smooth user experience in XR can mean facilitating adjustments in the middle of the game. Here’s how you might allow players to recalibrate their controllers without leaving the immersive environment:

func setup_calibration_action(profile):
    profile.add_action_binding("calibrate", "/user/hand/right/input/menu/click")

func _process(delta):
    if Input.is_action_just_pressed("calibrate"):

The code binds a menu button click to the “calibrate” action, enabling in-game recalibration of the XR controllers to rectify any drift or offset that may occur during gameplay.

Through these scenarios, we see how OpenXRInteractionProfile paves the way for intricate and tailored interactions in XR environments. By diving into these concepts and experimenting with the code examples, you elevate the user experience of your VR applications, making them as accessible and engaging as possible.

Continuing Your Godot Journey

If you’ve enjoyed diving into the world of XR development with Godot 4 and want to expand your skills further, we’re here to support your ongoing learning journey. We invite you to check out our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree, a comprehensive suite of courses that will deepen your understanding of what makes Godot 4 an exceptional choice for aspiring game developers.

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Embracing the capabilities of the OpenXRInteractionProfile in Godot 4 marks just the beginning of what’s possible in the exciting world of XR development. The versatility and depth provided by such tools empower you to create immersive and interactive experiences that resonate with players across the globe. At Zenva, we’re passionate about equipping you with the knowledge to turn your creative visions into reality.

Whether your goal is to become a professional game developer or to craft personal projects that push the boundaries of interactive media, our Godot Game Development Mini-Degree is the perfect launchpad. As you continue to explore, learn, and grow with us, the future of your game development aspirations is limitless. Join us at Zenva, and together we’ll bring your gaming dreams to life.

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