As some of you know, Oculus recently ran a Mobile VR Game Jam. A contest to create content for the Gear VR system. Along with Mark Schramm from VR Bits, we made a game called TECHNOLUST: THOUGHT CRIMES.
The competition deadline has past, but the fight is far from over. We have a small favor to ask of you. There is a community choice award and we need votes! You need a ChallengePost account to cast a vote, which I know is a bit of a hassle. We're not asking you to go in blind though. Below is a trailer for the new game, as well as a freshly compiled DK2 version for you to enjoy.
There is a Criminal database included, that shows off some of the new characters in the PC version of the game as well. Please give it a try, vote for us as your favorite and let us know what you think.
Just want to keep you all in the loop as to the state of the game, IRIS VR, and VR in general. Some news is amazing! Some news may disappoint a few of you. Hopefully the good will outweigh the bad.
GDC and Hardware
I was able to attend GDC 2015 in San Francisco and had an amazing time. It really was VR's coming out party. Every game engine had an Oculus Crescent Bay Prototype and everyone else had a DK2. You couldn't walk more than 10 feet on the expo floor without seeing VR. I had a chance to try out both the Valve/HTC Vive system and the new 120hz Sony Morpheus. They were fantastic. There are many reviews of all 3 systems scattered around the internet, so I won't bore you with the details here, but, needless to say, things are looking great for consumer VR.
With that said, on to the announcements:
We will be bringing the Technolust IP to both the Sony Morpheus and the HTC Vive! We have the Morpheus Dev kit already, and hopefully the Vive is not far behind. You will note that I said the Technolust IP, and not necessarily a direct port. This is because there are a lot of differences and advantages to each system. I want to make sure that everyone gets the best experience possible for their chosen hardware. This includes the Oculus Rift version, which is still in full production and coming along as planned.
We are no longer supporting the STEM system. I am sure this will be a sore spot for quite a few of you. Notably, those that backed STEM on Kickstarter. My hand has been forced on this for a number of reasons. First and foremost being the lack of development hardware. I can't support hardware I do not have access to. As far as I can tell, nobody has access to it. I have made several attempts to speak to the Sixense CEO in person and have been very put off in general. After trying (and owning) other motion control solutions, I am less than impressed with the STEM hardware in general regardless. Magnetic drift is a huge issue, as is the giant base station, the high cost and the lack of a market (people who will have the device). If by some miracle these problems are solved and a STEM box shows up at my door with an easily implementable SDK, I see no reason to support it in the future. But for now, it's too late in the development cycle to guarantee support.
Casting for the game is complete! The guys at Quantum Capture are hard at work putting the final touches on our models. This is hard work and takes some very technical and artistic minds to pull off, but the end result is mindblowing. Walking up to to a photorealistic human in VR and having them make eye contact with you is something almost indescribable. I brought a demo of some of these scans on the Samsung/Oculus Gear VR to GDC to demo to some people. Everyone's reactions where fantastic. Mouths gaped in awe with the occasional giddy laugh.
Release Date and Backer Rewards: I'm not sure that it has been officially announced elsewhere, so I will do so now. Technolust will be released along side the consumer release of the Oculus Rift (CV1).
This is both good and bad. The bad part is that those of you with DK2s will have to wait a while to enjoy the full game. We're not sure what the release date will be (as Oculus has not announced anything), but we can assume it will be at least another 6 months out. With that being said, it's great news for the game in general. More time to work on it means more value for you. If you're lucky enough to be in the Beta program, you will receive any and all major updates and watch as the game grows, from the dream of a single indie developer starving in Toronto, to a fully developed AAA open world cyberpunk adventure. This also means that the time and care necessary to please those backers in the higher tiers will be given. I still want to apologize for the gaps between updates. I have not forgotten you! It's a crazy time for everyone involved in VR. I don't remember the last time I watched a movie, played a video game or watched a TV show in the last year. It's all work and no play.
And for that reason, I'm happy to announce a new partnership with Occupied VR.
A new professional VR studio in the heart of downtown Toronto. With deep connections to the film industry, the Occupied VR collective is dedicated to making polished, high quality VR and cinematic experiences. We released a teaser to select people for our first project BODY/MIND/CHANGE Redux (with David Cronenberg), and broke some peoples minds. This project will continue to grow with the help of the Canadian Film Centre (with whom we work closely with). Many other projects are also in the works. Next up are projects for HOTDOCS, TIFF, and some other truly amazing intellectual properties that NEED to be seen .
More on Occupied to be announced soon. Keep an eye on them though.
That's it for now.
Please let me know in the comments if there is anything specific that you would like to know or see in the next update.
Thank you everyone for your continued support! If you haven't already, you can pre-order Technolust with Beta access here: PRE-ORDER TECHNOLUST