• Three-Part Cosmic Journey ‘SPHERES’ Arrives On The Oculus Rift

    Executive produced by Darren Aronofsky, the interactive series features narration by Millie Bobby Brown, Jessica Chastain, and Patti Smith. After a successful festival tour culminating in a Grand Jury Prize for Best Virtual Reality Immersive Story, as well as the first seven-figure VR acquisition at the 2018 Sundance Film Festival, SPHERES is now available for purchase

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  • AR Mobile Game Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Delayed Until 2019 A new teaser trailer has now appeared.
  • Japanese Man Spends $17,500 In ‘Cross-Dimensional’ Wedding To Hatsune Miku

    Akihiko Kondo’s “marriage” to the 16-year-old holographic pop star is just the latest in an increasingly prominent trend of holographic marriages. This past month, Akihiko Kondo, a 35-year-old school administrator, “married” synthetic VR pop star Hatsune Miku in a fairy tale wedding ceremony which cost a total of $17,500. Around 40 attendees (an astonishingly high

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  • Google Spotlight Stories’ Age of Sail Now Available Find it on YoutTube and the Spotlight Stories app.
  • Age of Sail Review: Google’s Latest VR Short Is Worth The Sea Sickness
    Age of Sail Review: Google’s Latest VR Short Is Worth The Sea Sickness

    Age of Sail stayed with me in a way that no other VR experience has. I mean that quite literally; as I sit here typing up my thoughts on Google’s latest Spotlight Story, I can still feel myself bobbing up and down on the rough waves that you brave alongside Ian McShane’s world-weary sailor and Cathy Ang’s defiantly optimistic rescuee. Now that’s immersion.

    Directed by Oscar-winner, John Kahrs, Age of Sail is a 12 minute VR short that you can see as a 2D movie or inside a mobile VR headset, but it’s best viewed via a Steam download on Rift and Vive. It’s a piece about the changing of the guard and finding a place for yourself in the new world, two topics that it explores with an on-the-nose metaphor and a touch of warming affection.

    We join McShane’s William Avery on his modest sailboat, bellowing with laughter as he sings along with his full crew to an old sea shanty that’s cut short by the roar of a tiny steamboat signaling the beginning of a new age. The next moment, we’re several years into the future and another boat 20 times the size of that dwarfs a now isolated and considerably more haggard Avery. A girl falls from the side, whom he somewhat reluctantly rescues. Needless to say, Ang’s enthusiasm and sentimentality don’t make for a good fit on the cramped confines of the deck, seating you in the middle of a touchy pairing.

    There’s mood here unlike anything seen in prior Spotlight Stories. As the two clash and the wind begins to swirl you find yourself lost in the drama of both character and element. Waves rise and you go with them, the deck swings and sways as does your stomach. You get the sense that Kahrs deliberately embraced sea sickness instead of straying away from it in an effort to put you right there on the boat. At one point, lost amongst the waves, you can even dip your head in and out of the water as you’re tossed around by a violent sea.

    Internal conflict represented by grey skies and stormy seas might not be a new concept to traditional cinema, but Kahrs uses that immersion to find new layers for it here. It might work a little too well for some to handle.

    But there’s reason to endure. Age of Sail has some remarkable cinematography to it, especially in its opening minute when steamboats drag your head around as you try to keep up with the future. It’s a clever bit of scene-setting, which Kahrs continues to demonstrate, reminding you of the kind of efficient story-telling we’re used to seeing on the silver screen. It’s also a hint that filmmakers might be starting to really grasp the language of VR.

    All of that’s enhanced by a rustic art style worthy of its shaggy seadog of a protagonist. Spotlight Stories are known for being easy on the eyes and this is no exception, even with the largely dimmer color palette at work.


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  • Owlchemy Labs Develops Avatar Customizer for Vacation Simulator, Launch Pushed to 2019 The team spent 2000 hours developing the feature for players to express their style.
  • Tetris Effect Has A Hidden Game Boy Level Because Of Course It Does
    Tetris Effect Has A Hidden Game Boy Level Because Of Course It Does

    Tetris Effect, the latest take on the puzzling classic, is a bombastic, hypnotic assault on the senses, and absolutely something you should be looking to get your hands on inside PSVR. But, for all of its neon-lit glory, we couldn’t help but long for the simpler days of that classic green-ish Game Boy version.

    Turns out that’s in there too.

    Somewhat unsurprisingly, there’s a secret level found inside Enhance Games’ latest that pays tribute to the version that helped Nintendo’s original handheld soar. The level unlocked after the game’s community passed a weekly goal set by the developer, known as Weekly Rituals. As the video below shows, the ‘1989’ level looks you’ve been sucked inside your handheld, with the music to fit. Give it a second and, yes, it kicks off that classic theme tune that you won’t be able to get out of your head for the next week. Sorry.

    Apparently, this stage also unlocks if you reach level 50 which, based on what I’ve played, takes a heck of a long time.

    In fact, watching this is a bit too entrancing. I think I’m going to have to go and play for several more hours. Sorry, productivity.

    Tagged with: Tetris Effect

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  • Beat Saber, Moss, Tetris Effect & More Nominated for The Game Awards 2018 Three of the nominations are PlayStation VR exclusives.
  • 3D Model Website Sketchfab Passes 1 Billion Page Views The site now has 2 million users.
  • Creed: Rise To Glory Adds Viktor Drago In Free Update
    Creed: Rise To Glory Adds Viktor Drago In Free Update

    VR boxing game Creed: Rise to Glory from Raw Data and Sprint Vector developer Survios is getting a free DLC update this month on November 27th. The update will add antagonists Viktor Drago and Danny “Stuntman” Wheeler from the upcoming Creed sequel, Creed II starring Michael B. Jordan and Sylvester Stallone, which is due out in theaters on November 21st.

    Creed II continues the story of Adonis Creed, son of original Rocky series’ Apollo Creed. The climactic fight at the end of the film is a battle with Viktor Drago, the son of Ivan Drago, otherwise known as the man that killed Adonis’ father, Apollo, in the ring during the events of Rocky IV. In a way, this is a familial rematch that’s been building for decades.

    Later this month, players will be able to reenact the films battle in VR and take on the roles of Adonis and Viktor Drago for themselves. Both Drago and Wheeler will be available in the Freeplay and PvP game modes across all platforms (PSVR, Steam, and Oculus Home.)

    We praised the gameplay in Creed for our review, but had some reservations about the general lack of content. Overall, it’s still an excellent VR boxing title — especially for fans of the film franchise.

    Tagged with: Creed: Rise to Glory, Survios

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  • Astro Bot, Firewall, Tetris, And More Headline VR Game Awards Nominees
    Astro Bot, Firewall, Tetris, And More Headline VR Game Awards Nominees

    The Game Awards announced their official nominees for all categories in the 2018 ceremony next month, including an assortment of five different titles for Best VR/AR Game. The nominees in this category are Astro Bot: Rescue Mission, Beat Saber, Firewall: Zero Hour, Tetris Effect, and Moss. Without question they’re all great games so it’s really quite the toss-up.

    Also worth noting is that Moss from Polyarc Games is nominated in the “Best Debut Indie Game” category as well alongside popular non-VR gems like Donut County, The Messenger, and Florence, which is great recognition for VR gaming as a whole.

    Once again all of the nominees in this year’s Game Awards are either PSVR-exclusive titles (like Astro Bot, Firewall, and Tetris Effect) or are multiplatform and appearing on PSVR as well (Moss was a timed exclusive and Beat Saber will hit PSVR this month) but that’s to be expected given Sony’s market share.

    You can cast your vote for Best VR/AR Game, Best Debut Indie Game, overall Game of the Year, and more in The Game Awards over on the official website. Let us know your picks on Twitter and Facebook!

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  • Complex Data Analytics Become Easier to Understand With VR Platform Lume The project is a collaborative effort between Imagination and the University of Cambridge.
  • Paragliding Experience Paraflight VR Opens at iFLY Basingstoke Paragliding without ever leaving the ground (sort of).
  • When Will Oculus Go Finally Get Minecraft? It’s Still Unclear
    When Will Oculus Go Finally Get Minecraft? It’s Still Unclear

    Yesterday, YouTube VR was released for Oculus Go. In his tweet about the release, Oculus CTO John Carmack stated that it was one of the two apps people always ask him about, and that there “is also some progress on the other one” – the other one almost certainly being Minecraft.

    No upcoming Oculus Go game is anywhere near as anticipated as Minecraft. Minecraft is the highest selling 3D game ever, with over 150 million copies sold. It is available on almost all gaming platforms, with cross platform multiplayer between most of them.

    The game is anticipated for Go not just due to its significance outside VR, but because it has been available on the Samsung Gear VR headset for over 2 years now. Gear VR runs the same Oculus mobile store as Go, so in theory porting should be easy. In fact, some YouTubers have even managed to sideload the game into the Go headset, though reportedly only singleplayer works.

    Minecraft’s absence was noted at Go’s launch back in May. No statement was given at the time (by either Oculus or Microsoft) about the reason for the absence, a release date, or even if it was coming at all.

    Minecraft Was Carmack’s “Quest”

    Oculus CTO John Carmack was heavily involved in porting Minecraft to Gear VR back in 2016. Carmack worked directly with Mojang to provide both code and guidance. Facebook’s lawyers warned him that his work would become Microsoft’s property, but Carmack didn’t care – getting Minecraft on Gear VR had become his “quest”. In fact, Carmack went as far as to say that he “would have cried” if the deal hadn’t worked out.

    Shortly before Minecraft’s release on Gear VR, Carmack called it “the best thing to come out on Oculus”, even going as far as to say all of Oculus, not just Gear VR.

    First Hints Of A Go Port

    Carmack first hinted that the game could be coming to Go in June, when he stated that it was “a high priority for sure”, but added the disclaimer that few Go owners would have a gamepad paired. This is relevant because the Go’s included controller does not have enough inputs for Minecraft.

    The following month, Carmack hinted that progress was being made, and noted that he cared a lot about getting it:

    From ‘If’ To ‘When’

    When asked to list his favorite Go apps in September, Carmack ended his response with “When we get Minecraft running on Go it will be back in the list.”

    This brings us back to yesterday’s tweet, where Carmack suggested “some progress” has been made. We’ll keep you updated on any further news about Minecraft coming to Oculus Go.

    Tagged with: john carmack, Minecraft, Oculus Go

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  • Vacation Simulator Release Date Pushed Into 2019 By Owlchemy Labs
    Vacation Simulator Release Date Pushed Into 2019 By Owlchemy Labs

    The release date for the follow-up to Job Simulator shifted out of 2018 and into 2019, an update today from development studio Owlchemy Labs confirms.

    Vacation Simulator is a larger follow on to Owlchemy’s groundbreaking game Job Simulator created for the 2016 launch of the HTC Vive. Job Simulator has since launched on pretty much all VR headsets that offer robust 6DoF hand controllers. Last year the company was purchased by Google while continuing work on a follow up title. Up until this week Vacation Simulator’s web site gave 2018 as an expected release window, but a blog post today explaining the avatar system in the game also confirmed the title’s new launch window is sometime in 2019. The date on Vacation Simulator’s main website was also changed from 2018 to 2019.

    Owlchemy CEO Devin Reimer and his team did foundational work with Job Simulator that is highly reusable across other products. That work appears to be continuing with Vacation Simulator, with the company developing a mobile spectator view for the game that would be a pretty amazing feature if Google integrated it as a larger part of its stack of VR tools given to developers for the Daydream operating system. Notably, Google recently announced its own controller tracking technology that could be pretty compelling in a standalone VR headset.

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