• Review: Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series – Episode 1 A VR match made in a galaxy far, far away.
  • Star Wars: Vader Immortal Episode 1 Review: The One You’ve Been Searching For
    Star Wars Vader Immortal Review

    Darth Vader was never scary to me. That is, I suppose, a product of growing up at a time where the original Star Wars’ special effects were starting to creak, and not long before we were introduced to the crookedly-toothed horned devil that is Darth Maul. I’ve always been jealous, though, of the people that felt the chill down their spine when he first stepped through the smoke of Tantive IV.

    That envy instantly subsided not long into Star Wars: Vader Immortal Episode 1.

    VR Immortal

    Facing down the dark lord is one of many incredible moments in Vader Immortal’s 45 minute run time. He emerges in similar fashion to his big screen debut, authoritatively strides over to you and then bathes you in his sinister shadow, a hulking mass of machine and muscle. You can’t see his eyes, but somehow those empty, soulless substitutes on his mask pierce through you all the same. It is, to be frank, utterly terrifying. Vader Immortal is all about bringing these kinds of iconic moments to life, and it does so with aplomb.

    Developer ILMxLAB has spoken of this as an immersion-driven experience, one that merges games and narrative in hopes of establishing new language for VR. Yes, it has cinematic lightsaber combat that’s (almost) as good as you’d hoped, but it’s just as concerned with place, interaction and, most importantly, connection.

    For starters, it’s a fan’s wildest dream come true. You play as a smuggler that’s taken captive in Vader’s castle, located on the fiery wastes of Mustafar. But you’re not here to be interrogated or frozen in carbonite; Vader needs you for something. One hasty escape attempt later and you’re led on a whirlwind tour of his indulgent domain and, interestingly, the origins of the planet it’s sitting on.

    A New Kind Of Star Wars Story

    For a universe that’s had every conceivable nook and cranny scrutinized over the past 42 years, Vader Immortal explores some surprisingly intriguing areas for Star Wars fans of varying dedication. Without spoiling anything, it carefully treads the line between the expanded universe the die-hards adore without ever distancing itself too far from the source material. We see a new side to the storied character, one that touches upon the tragedies that have made him who he is and the dangerously misguided emotions and decisions that have flourished from them.

    More importantly, though, ILMxLAB weaves a potent mix of character-driven exposition and involved role-playing. This being Star Wars, you’re accompanied by a sassy droid, ZO-E3, voiced by Saturday Night Live’s Maya Rudolph. She’s a great example of what makes Vader Immortal work, treating you as a living, breathing character in this world and never shying away from making eye-contact or getting close to you. Like every character you encounter, she makes you feel like a genuine part of the experience. She’s also incredibly funny. “I wasn’t programmed for this” she screams after watching one particularly harrowing sequence.

    Experience First

    Many of the things you do in Vader Immortal aren’t ‘gamey’ things, though. When Vader hands you an

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  • Sheffield Doc/Fest 2019 Reveals The Latest In VR Documentaries
    Sheffield Doc/Fest 2019 Reveals The Latest In VR Documentaries

    In an increasingly busy VR festival circuit, the annual Sheffield Doc/Fest has long stood out for its focused look at immersive documentary making. In fact, last year’s showing topped even E3. The 2019 edition looks to be no different.

    Sheffield Doc/Fest returns to the UK city on June 6 with a slate of immersive projects. The show’s Alternate Realities section continues to integrate non-VR projects this year, but there’s plenty for headset fans to look forward to. For starters, Sheffield Hallam University’s Performance Lab will host a VR cinema showcasing 12 360 degree films. These include Potato Dreams, which follows the story of a young boy growing up as a homosexual in the Soviet Union.

    Other projects include some of the best picks from other recent festivals. VR City’s fantastic Common Ground, which charts the story of a London social housing block, will feature as will SXSW installation, The Atomic Tree. Felix and Paul’s recent Sundance project, Traveling While Black, will also make an appearance. All in all it looks to be another strong showing of how VR and other technologies are pushing documentaries forward.

    Half of the 28 of this year’s Alternate Realities projects were made by women. The Alternate Realities Talent Market, meanwhile, will host 25 teams pitching creative projects in an effort to inspire collaboration.

    As always, the festival’s immersive efforts are bolstered by a day of talks and showcases at the Alternate Realities Summit. This year it’s being held on June 9 and will host the likes of Google Creative Lab creative director, Tea Uglow.

    Doc/Fest 2019 will run from June 6 – 11. You can grab tickets here.

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  • Hands-On: Battlewake’s Arcade Action Is Full Of Epic Sea Battles
    battlewake ship combat

    We got the first hands-on preview of Battlewake, the next VR title from Survios, creators of Raw Data, Sprint Vector, and Creed: Rise to Glory.

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  • Detective Pikachu Event Invades Mobile AR Game Pokemon Go
    pokemon go detective pikachu

    Detective Pikachu hits theaters this weekend and Niantic Labs are naturally launching a promotion in Pokemon Go to coincide with the film's release.

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  • Co-op Party Game Spaceteam Being Adapted for VR The VR version is for both VR arcades and home consumers.
  • The BBC is Touring UK Libraries With its VR Experiences The tour starts today at select libraries.
  • Spaceteam VR Coming From Cooperative Innovations
    Spaceteam VR Coming From Cooperative Innovations

    Get ready to scream your head off at your virtual friends; Spaceteam VR is on the way.

    Cooperative Innovations today announced that it has licensed the award-winning mobile game from Sleeping Beast Games and is developing a VR version of it. The game will be coming to both home-based headsets and VR arcades later this year.

    Living up to the developer’s name, Spaceteam is all about cooperating with friends to pilot a spacecraft. In the original version, each player operates different parts of the ship’s interface. Their friends get orders on the screen that they have to call out and the relevant person responds. On mobile, that means sitting around in a circle and screaming directions at the top of your voice in hopes that the right person hears you over everyone else. It’s a little nuts, to say the least.

    We can easily see the game translating to VR. Imagine sitting in a cockpit next to your friends and frantically pulling levers and flicking switches at their command.

    There’s still a lot to learn about the VR version of the game, though. Studio CEO & Founder Simon Barratt says that an alpha version will be making its way to testers soon. You can also sign up to a newsletter here.

    Cooperative Innovations itself is based in the UK and is working on several VR projects. We’ve been following the team’s first project, Raiders of Erda, for some time now. It’s a multiplayer VR dungeon crawler that looks like it could scratch a Skyrim itch. The studio also recently revealed a VR/AR avatar mapping system named Ikabod.

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  • Mixed Reality Comes To Trampoline Parks For the Ultimate Cardio Experience

    MR technology blends exercise and gaming to promote fantasy and fitness. If jumping into a completely 360-degree immersive mixed reality arena to battle space aliens from a far-away galaxy, transporting yourself to alternate dimensions to destroy virtual cosmic glass, or facing off against real-life opponents by hurling a SPLATTERBALL sounds like a good time to

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  • ‘Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series’ Story Details & Price Announced

    Take a peek at what Vader is up to when he’s not conquering the galaxy for $9.99. Available May 21st as a launch title for the Oculus Quest, ILMxLAB’s Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series is a three-part immersive journey that will take users deep into the lore of the Star Wars universe for

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  • How To Check If Your PC Is VR Ready
    Rift S Index WMR

    If you want to get a PC VR headset like Oculus Rift S, Valve Index, or Windows MR headsets you can use each platform's official compatibility checker

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  • New PSVR Bundles Feature Blood & Truth And Trover Saves The Universe
    New PSVR Bundles Feature Blood & Truth And Trover Saves The Universe

    These new PSVR bundles feature some of the summer's hottest upcoming VR games at great prices to jump into the VR ecosystem if you own a PS4 already.

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  • Swords of Gargantua to Hold Global Open Beta, NVIDIA RTX 2080 to be won The beta will begin next week.
  • Five Nights at Freddy’s VR Lists May Release Date On Steam
    Five Nights at Freddy's VR

    Five Nights at Freddy’s VR: Help Wanted was originally meant to be launching in April. Obviously, that didn’t happen, but a new date could have just been revealed.

    A new Steam listing says the game’s due out on May 21 (the same day as Rift S and Quest!). It’ll release for the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. We reached out to developer Steel Wool Studios to confirm the date but haven’t yet heard back.

    Five Nights at Freddy’s VR combines classic levels from the original games along with all-new content. The Steam listing confirms that the game has entirely remade versions of sequences from each of the first vie entries. You’re tasked with repairing a run-down set of animatronics that take on a life of their own. The series is notorious for its alarming jump scares, making it a perfect fit for any VR owner with a healthy heart.

    We got a little hands-on time with the game back in March. In fact, we thought VR brought a lot to the series. “For example, on a PC or other screen you can only interact with what you can see,” Senior Editor David Jagneaux wrote. “But in VR, I can have my hand over the button for one door while watching another door to quickly switch what’s opened and closed. It also makes reacting a bit slower since you have to physically move and react instead of just clicking or tapping something on a screen. That definitely changes things.”

    Look for more impressions later this month. I’ll probably get David to review it, though.

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  • Social VR World Somnium Space Completes $1 Million Funding Round, Oculus Quest Version Coming 2019 This includes its two successful crowd-funding campaigns.