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"Control the game using your own head movements!"

By Torben Schou.
Developed as part of my PhD, it allows the player to use a number of head gestures to control the game, including the ability to...


The user can zoom into the scene by moving their head towards the screen.

The user can aim down the barrel of their weapon by rolling their head to the right, much like they would in real life.

Windowing (The Johnny Lee effect)
The perspective of the view is altered based on the user's head position to make the screen appear like a window into the scene.

180 Spin
The user can perform a half spin by flicking their head to either side.

The player can look sideways and around objects in the virtual world by leaning their head.


Software Requirements:

A Source licence (i.e. HL2, CS:S, Portal, Team Fortress 2, etc)

Source SDK (free to download through Steam)

Hardware Requirements:

USB-2 Web camera preferably running at 640x480 @ 30Hz (web-camera IN your computer does properly not work!!!!)

Reasonable hardware (e.g. 2Ghz, 1GB RAM) running a dual-core processor


  1. Enter your email below and click on the '>'

  2. Open the email you receive and download the file from the link provided

  3. Unzip the file

  4. Shut down Steam

  5. Run 'full_setup.exe'

  6. If the Face API installer does not run automatically, run 'faceapi_setup.exe'

  7. If the IPP Run-time installer does not run automatically, run 'IPP5.3.3/setup.exe'

  8. Connect your web camera and place it under your monitor, facing you

  9. Open Steam, click on 'My Games' and run 'Head Tracking'

  10. For the best performance, sit about half a meter away from your web camera


  1. Run "C:\Program Files\Valve\Steam\SteamApps\SourceMods\head tracking\uninstall.exe"

  2. Run "C:\Program Files\Valve\Steam\SteamApps\STEAM_USERNAME\source sdk base\uninstall.exe"

    For more information:
    Download now:

    Frequently Asked Questions

    The program doesn't run or it launches but I can't load the map...
    Here are a few tips: Ensure the that program has been installed to the correct directory. In particular, Valve at one stage changed where Steam was installed (from c:/valve/steam to just c:/steam). As such make sure you are using the correct Steam directory. If you are, a head tracking folder (which contains bin, cfg, etc) should be placed within your steamapps/SourceMods folder. Likewise, a resources folder should be placed in your source sdk base folder and some additional DLLs should be placed within the source sdk base/bin folder. If it seems that the IPP Runtime did not install properly (meanings it is probably not listed under your Add/Remove Programs list), go to the Seeing Machines website and grab and install the latest version of the FaceAPI ( as this will also include the lastest IPP Runtime.

    The game starts, the map loads, I can hear sounds but the screen is black...
    Unfortunately that version of the system occasionally suffers from a bug that results in the screen blacking out. To resolve it, turn off all the techniques and restart the game (by either typing _restart into the console or just quit it and start it up again). Once you done that, then just try turning on each technique, one by one. The program runs slowly... Try the following: Part of the tracking performance is determined by the web camera, so try to make sure it is running at least at 640x480 at 30 frames per second, which cannot be achieved using a USB 1.1 camera. Some of the web cameras come with software that will try to automatically adjust the exposure, brightness, contrast, etc, of the image. This often kills the tracking performance, so try to use manual settings instead. As long as your lighting conditions do not dramatically change, the tracking should improve. Ensure your computer has at least a dual core processor

    I want to put head tracking in my application. How do I do it?
    Follow my integration guide. Once you have something going, let us know what you are doing so we share it with the rest of the community! We really appreciate hearing about what you are doing with this technology. Can I use it on Windows 7? Now that Windows 7 is officially released, it seems that the issues that people were facing in the past have disappeared - so yes, you can use Windows 7. If you're still having issues, try setting the hl2.exe (in the source sdk base folder) to run under the XP compatibly mode. Thanks to everyone sent me an email about this issue Can I use this with a different game, such as Half-Life 2 or Call of Duty 4? Unfortunately not, unless you have the source for those games (which unless you're the game developer, you won't) Technically, it is possible to copy the content of other Source games (such as HL2) into the headtracking game, but legally I cannot distribute that content pre-bundled in.

    The program seems slow to quit. Am I doing something wrong?
    No, it's just that the system still suffers from a few teething problems. Either give the system time to shutdown or just kill it using the Task Manager. I cannot download the file. Why do I get a 404? The link changes every day to avoid people hard linking to it. As such, if you don't download the file soon after receiving the email, you'll get a 404. Furthermore, if you're timing is unlucky, you may only get a few minutes to download it (an oversight on my part, which I plan to correct at some stage). In this case, just request the download again.

Contact here for help! Not on the mod page!

Do not expect to get help by typing comments!
I did NOT made this mod Torben Schou did!
Please contact him here instead:

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Post comment Comments  (20 - 30 of 50)
dapaperboy Aug 22 2010, 11:24pm says:

I did everything that the readme says, but the installer does not work for me. When I install the programs, no Headtracking folder shows up in my steamapps folder. Can anybody help me?

Oh, and mind=blown.

+1 vote     reply to comment
dapaperboy Aug 22 2010, 11:29pm replied:

Well it turns out that it somehow installed itself to a Valve folder in my program files, but it fixed the problem.

+1 vote     reply to comment
SolidR Aug 18 2010, 3:43pm says:

Mmm, I can't get this thing to work.
My cam works properly (I'm using the xbox live vision cam), I installed everything correctly, but when I start up the mod my cam doesn't even turn on.

+1 vote     reply to comment
TenginE Aug 16 2010, 2:16pm says:

1:07 blew my effing mind.

This is excellent stuff!

+1 vote     reply to comment
StegoSigma Aug 16 2010, 2:20am says:

A bit buggy, could use some adjusting, but still very awesome!

+1 vote     reply to comment
Jigron Aug 15 2010, 7:36pm says:

This is stunning, will surely bring something new to the gamin scene.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Ian50028 Aug 14 2010, 11:19am says:

Epic mate, epic. The best thing made for a game.... The wii it´s a sh*t. with this you control the most epic character "Gordon Freeman" well only his head xD

+1 vote     reply to comment
crazyb2000 Aug 14 2010, 10:38am says:

I was messing around with for ages. On some lower spec computers it lags up because of the camera process but still this is epic.

+1 vote     reply to comment
Mv.c9 Aug 14 2010, 8:31am says:

I Dont even have HalfLife anymore, but I track it, This is the Best Mod i have ever seen in my modding carrer. this is Truely a mod, you are actually enhacing the engine, while all others such as myself are using the engine in other ways.

Sir, I can say that you Deserve the Phd that you got, which it cant be said much abt other Phd holders.

0 votes     reply to comment
The_Dias Aug 14 2010, 11:05am replied:

How do you not have half-life anymore? :\

+2 votes     reply to comment
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Released May 26, 2010
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