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Virtual Reality Game Development Studio

@Rebellion Has Re-imagined Retro Arcade Game BattleZone for #VR

Who doesn’t love a good ol’ retro game now and then? If it wasn’t for affordable consoles of the modern-day, gaming arcades would still be as popular as it was back in the mid twentieth century. Actually, if you want to experience the arcade environment again in virtual reality, then there is New Retro Arcade: Neon. Though, if you’re looking for an re-imagined retro game built for virtual reality, then BattleZoneVR is one to add to your VR to-do list.

Rebellion are the re-imaginaries of this classic 80’s arcade game. Founded in 1992, Rebellion is an impressive studio, which has had several games top the charts, which include the Sniper Elite series, Nazi Zombie Army, Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron and Aliens vs. Predator. They are also acquired cult comic publisher, 2000 AD, who are responsible for Judge Dredd and Rogue Trooper. With over 23 years of experience developing great games and being avid arcade junkies, they’ve put their skills to the test to bring BattleZone into the future.

If you don’t know the backstory of BattleZone, the game takes place in a technologically advanced wasteland filled with robots who are controlled by The Corporation(an all dominating industrial complex). Humanity is nearing extinction, who now relies on you and your Cobra( the most powerful battle vehicle ever) to take down The Corporation and it’s legions of mechanized forces.

The current iteration of BattleZone is built from the ground-up specifically for PlayStation VR. No two maps you battle in is the same, as it is procedurally generated, which means it’s important for you to choose the tank and load-out most handy for you. There is different ways to customize your cobra, with an arsenal of tools of destruction, including machine guns, laser-guided missiles, shield bursts, etc.

As you continue to chip at the corp, you’ll gain access to more powerful tanks, weapons and equipment, ensuring that you can stand against the more formidable foes. You’ll also be collecting data which allows you to boost your health and shields. If you’re worried about facing the corporation alone or just want a squad to ensure their downfall, there is a co-op mode.

With highly detailed colorful environments and ever-changing battle sequences for the PSVR owner to immerse themselves in, it induces high competitiveness and replay-ability. BattleZone has received recognition from VideoGamer.com (“One of the best shooters I’ve played in ages”), GamesRadar(“This is a PlayStation VR launch you’ll want on your day one list”) and other VR enthusiasts. The game is currently available in major retailers for price of $40, which will be well worth it. To follow-up on their developments and announcements on Twitter @BattlezoneVR.

Thanks for reading!

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@FierceKaiju is Re-Inventing Flagship #VR Game “Viral”for the Rift and Vive

 

I must admit, it’s fun scouring the internet for game studios and engineering companies who are adding creative solutions and entertaining content to the VR marketplace. Honestly, who would’ve expected that immersive interfaces, such as the HTC Vive and Playstation VR, was right around the corner for the average person to purchase? Who would’ve thought so much experiences and digital tools would be available for VR within a year of it’s introduction to the public marketplace? But who can blame these pioneering developers, such as Fierce Kaiju.

Fierce Kaiju is a game development studio based in Yorkshire, UK, which was founded in mid-year 2014 by Paul Colls(Creative Director), Dan Roberts(Art Director) and Andy Greensmith, with the focus on creating immersive content. Before its founding, the developers have been harnessing their skills with Rockstar Games and Activision, being a part of the Call of Duty, Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption series.

In cooperation with Oculus in year 2015, they produced their flagship VR game “Viral,” for the Gear VR. Viral puts you into an A.I. program named E.V.E.(a.k.a. Emotional Virtual Engine), as the anti-virus warrior program “Ragnarok”. Needless to say, your objective: Eliminate the Viruses. You have access to power-ups and E.V.E.’s dormant defense system to clean out her system.

To create a comfortable and intuitive gaming system, they’ve kept the player stationery, so in order to avoid health-loss, you must shoot incoming projectiles fired from the viruses. Also, to advance through the levels, they employ a teleportation system, where the player shoots the next platform after done eliminating the enemies. The game is colorful and addictive and has recieced recognition from Polygon and Three Bens in VR. If you own a HTC Vive or Oculus Rift, then you’re in luck, since they are making the game compatible for these hi-end immersive interfaces.

For a studio founded on the purpose of creating entertaining and addictive immersive games to add traction to the adoption of virtual reality, we should expect to see more polished experiences from Fierce Kaiju. If you’re you are interested in learning more about them, you can connect with them via Twitter @FierceKaiju.

Thanks for reading!

@TurtleRock Studios Delves into #VR with “Face Your Fears” and “Other Worlds” for the Gear VR

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It can be a struggle for independent game studios to prove themselves in a world where corporate gatekeepers exist. Though this shouldn’t deter any aspiring developers, and with interactive virtual reality content essentially being a new thing for the public marketplace, this will afford another opportunity for independent game studios to prove their worth.

Speaking of studios on the grind that has recently developed for VR, Turtle Rock Studios has announced their development of two game for the Samsung Gear VR. For those who does not recognize them, Turtle Rock is an American studio founded in 2002 by ex-Westwood Pacific developer, Michael Booth and now currently ran jointly by Phil Robb and Chris Ashton, after having a brief one year stint with Valve Corporation(2008-2009). They are the original creators of Left 4 Dead and Evolve.

Now they’re working on a immersive horror and exploratory experiences. Face your fears can be likened to “Don’t Let Go(Yorick van Vliet),” where the gameplay focuses around you facing horrifying events. They’ve incorporated an eye-tracking element to it, where depending on where you are focusing your attention, will depend on how the game will scare you. Two of the in-game experiences they announce is Skyscraper(targeted towards acrophobes), and the Haunting(targeted towards phasmophobes).

To balance out this experience, they are also coming out with Other Worlds, which is similar to the experience of Ali Eslami’s re-interpretation of Rene Magritte’s Paintings, except you’ll get to explore the creative mind of artist Justin Cherry. Those this world is much more active, as explained by them “Other Worlds allows players to experience the awe and beauty of being inside a painting, showcasing three unique worlds… and explore the environment long enough and the player may see one of many random events tailored to the world they’re currently in.”

So if you own the Gear VR and want to experience some triple-A content, make sure you add these games to your VR to-do list. Meantime, in-between time you can chat it up on their forums or connect with them via Twitter @TurtleRock.

Thanks for reading!

Popular Game Studio Zynga Re-Creates their Game ‘Mountain Goat Mountain’ for Virtual Reality

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It is understandable that since the advent of virtual reality, many game development studios wondered about how their two-D games could be re-created for VR. Just recently, Mythical City Games announced their plans to bring Battle Fleet 2 to VR, by re-imagining it as a table-top game. Since it is a turn-based game with fog-of-war enabled, it does make since for the player to have a over-head third-person-view as if they were playing a board -game.

Another studio, by the name of Zynga, has released their own version of their two-D games. If you ever played Farmville, Matching with Friends or Crazy Cake Shop, then you’ve played one of their games. Though they have over 20 games in their portfolio, there is one game that was handpicked for virtual reality.

Mountain Goat Mountain takes place on a mountain side, with a very simple objective: try to reach the top of the mountain. Put into another words from VRFocus, “Taking its cues from Q*Bert, Mountain Goat Mountain sees the player in direct control of a mountain goat as it tries to ascend a cube-based mountain.”

Though reaching the top, is not as simple as pressing the jump button, as you must navigate to the top without being smashed by boulders, drowning in water, being struck by lightning or having the ground beneath you crumble right before your eyes. The more cubes you ascend, the higher score you’ll obtain before eventually dying from one of these colorful scenarios.

Now you can experience the joys of being a mountain goat on the Oculus Rift. Being a game originally made for app download on the smartphone, it definitely utilizes space and depth that VR interfaces has to offer. Also, it is one of the first VR games to implement a ad monetization solution for VR games, which definitely does not come across as intrusive or disruptive to the gaming experience.

If you own an Oculus Rift, go take the risk and download Mountain Goat Mountain for free. If you are interested about the studio, visit their website or connect with them on Twitter @Zynga.

Carbon Studios Enters the Virtual Reality Marketplace with Flagship Game “Alice VR”

Carbon Studio is a collective team of dedicated individuals who’s expertise lies in developing virtual applications using Unreal Engine 4. They work with companies abroad to create apartment demos, architectural designs and games. Some of which includes their Apartament solution for designing interior living spaces and the Swierklaniec Palace. They’ve also had the pleasure to work with RARA AVIS, 4EXPERIENCE, Softello and The Farm 51.

With the advent of immersive interfaces such as the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR, Carbon Studio has shifted their attention in making awe-inspiring worlds and stories for virtual reality. The first execution of this venture was the release of A.L.I.C.E. for the Gear VR, which entered the VR JAM competition, hosted by Oculus and Unity. Since the initial project received lots of praise and positive review during the final stages of the competition, Carbon Studio decided to develop a full-blown version of A.L.I.C.E, which is now known as ALICE VR.

ALICE VR takes place in a deserted region of a alien-planet. You enter the avatar of a space explorer who’s ship malfunctioned and who’s been forced to land on this foreign planet to retrieve graphene to repair his ship. But there are no beings present on this planet, as if they’ve vanished. With a broken space craft and no access to graphene, you are forced to explore the planet and solve series of puzzles to find out what happened.

The puzzle aspect of ALICE VR is inspired by Alice in Wonderland, such as shrinking and un-shrinking. Through the first-person gameplay, you are able to take different paths to unlock the mystery, which ultimately leads to different endings to your adventure. The game takes 3 hours to complete, but in order to unveil the complete story, you’ll have to play it a couple times.

It was originally planned to be released when Oculus Rift and HTC Vive became available in April, but has been delayed to early fall of 2016. The project manager of ALICE VR, Paweł Gajda, stated to UploadVR, “We got an opportunity to further develop and polish ALICE VR. Soon, we’ll be able to reveal some more details about what caused this decision and how ALICE VR will benefit from these few extra months of development.”

Because of the delayed release, it makes it a very anticipated game to look out for. If not for the gameplay, the visuals and details showcased in their trailer will give players a reason to add the game to their VR to-do list. You can learn more about ALICE VR and Carbon Studios by visiting their website. If you’re a business, you can get in touch with Carbon Studios to see what they can do for you.

Playful Corp: Bringing the Full Potential of Virtual Reality Gaming with Lucky Tales for Oculus Rift

In recent years, developers have been trying to figure out how to best utilize Virtual Reality. With the ability to transport people to completely different worlds from the comfort of their own couch is simply, ground-breaking. The truth is, virtual reality provides nearly infinite amount of pixelated space to be utilized by developers, providing more creative freedom for aspiring VR developers.

This brings me to one studio that has been invested in by Oculus and private funders to create next-level games. Paul Bettner, who previously worked for Newtoy (company that created “Words With Friends,” and was acquired by Zynga), started up Playful Corporations in 2012. They have currently produced Creativerse and Oculus bundled game, Lucky Tales.

Creativerse is a non-VR free-to-play game that resembles a lot like Minecraft with blocks making up the world and free-roam adventure gameplay. Once you enter the world, you’ll understand it has it’s own unique style. The avatar you inhabit and creatures throughout the world are cartoony and not blocky; and crafting is much more… fun.

What is also unique about Creativerse, is it’s online public play, which virtually means they take care of the hosting for you so others can jump in and join your world, making it a truly social experience. You can explore the world for lost recipes and battle strange creatures or settle down and build your kingdom. With the free-to-play aspect of the game it something definitely worth checking out at CreativerseGame.com.

The real game for discussion, when it comes to innovative experiences for virtual reality, is Lucky Tales. Lucky Tales is an fully developed platform game created for the Oculus Rift. As Paul Bettner explains, “When we first got together with Oculus, we looked at this platform and realized, all the rules of making games got thrown out the window.”

They’ve definitely renewed the way games are experienced with VR skeptic Joe Durbin explaining that, ” after taking off the headset 15 minutes later, I realized the enormous grin on my face meant I have never been so happy to be wrong.”

What he and others found so exciting about Lucky Tales is sidelines perspective the game employs. Instead of a first-person view through the eyes of Lucky, you have a more omniscient view of the environment. You can pan around and lean into the platform world to explore the beauty of the game, as well as find various characters doing random things, you would not otherwise have seen by just staring at Lucky and rushing through level objectives.

With Lucky Tales playful tone and creative viewing of the world, it makes for a very delightful and anticipated experience with the release of consumer-edition Oculus. You can learn more about Lucky Tales and Creativerse on playfulcorp.com or check out the bundled deal on the Oculus website.

Ovni Studios: Mobile Game Development Studio Entering the Virtual Reality MarketPlace with “Peronio”

Ovni Studio is a game development company that has been creating entertaining games for the last 15 years. The company is currently based out of São Paulo, Spain, with their main focus being mobile gaming. Companies such as AngenciaClick Midia Interativa Ltda, ACI Worldwide, Banco Bradesco, Seguros Unimed, SOS Mata Atlantica and more have relied on their expertise in mobile gaming apps. Now Ovni Studio has entered the mixed reality market, with their flagship VR game “Peronio.”  But before we talk about their latest achievement, let’s take a look at some of the games they’ve developed in the past.

AgenciaClick Midia Interativa Ltda employed Ovni to develop a graffiti-style game, named “Fiat Uno Color Race”Fiat Uno Color Race. It is intended to be a purely fun game, where you “hit the tracks and steer around the city, using your drifts and applying your brush on the streets, houses and skyscrapers.” Beware of the nine enemy cars though, as they will interrupt your groove on the road. You can customize you Fiat to your liking with different body colors and stickers. The art you apply on your car has an impact on your graffiti style around the city. With 20 levels to play, you can test your combo and drift skills which can be shared with your social networks.

Link 237 Lab is another entertaining mobile game developed for Banco Bradesco S.A. This is a 2-dimensional point-and-click game that features a little robot, ready to gobble up some lightning. With different engineering devices, such as pipes, fans, trampolines and magnets, you main objective is to direct lightning to the stomach of Link 237. There are various scenarios that tests your speed and ingenuity, making this game pretty addictive.

They’ve also created a educational app for SOS Mata Atlantica. This game allows players to learn about the devastation of deforestation in the Atlantic Forest in Brazil. The forest used to stretch 17 states, with it’s area equivalent to 1,315,460 km squared. It also houses a massive variety of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish, as well as human inhabitants. In the modern day, it is only %8.5 of its original size. Now this forest and its occupants is on the verge of extinction.

In order to educate people about the devastating effects of deforestation, players set up headquarters inside the Atlantic Forest. Players are able to grow different plants, raise cattle, dispose of waste, decorate their headquarters and rebuild the forest. To measure in-game progress, a Environment Awareness meter is displayed. This is an indication of how balanced the player activities are with their environmental effects.  You can collect Green Coins and Regular coins as currency to buy items you need at the moment. There is also a Energy bar that depletes during your activities, but replenishes when not tending to your headquarters. Overall, the mobile game provides a great way to bring awareness to people about the effects of the diminishing Atlantic Forest.

Through these accomplishments, they have made it their obligation to enter the up-and coming mixed reality industry with “Peronio.” As stated by them, “We loves Augmented Reality and, more recently, our new Holographic mobile solution, combining Virtual and Augmented Reality Technology into one unique immersible experience.”

Peronio explores the life of a young kid trying to figure out what he wants to be when he grows up. Does he want to be a Chef, a Engineer, mechanic or maybe even a archaeologist. The possibilities are endless. The story is told through a digital pop-up book, which gives you the option to experience it through virtual or augmented reality. To play the story in AR mode, they provide you a downloadable target through there website. This allows you to play the book on your coffee table, bed or floor. If you have a mobile VR headset, such as a Powis Custom (WWGC), you can experience an immersive narrative of the story.

Throughout the story, you are able to play mini-games with the character, which includes building a hover car or baking a insanely tall cake. To interact with the pop-up book, you simply point your target dot at object of interest. You can download the book through Google Play or Apple’s App Store. With it’s creative adaptation of pop-up books and vibrant graphics, Peronio is an excellent flagship mixed reality game for Ovni to enter the new marketplace with. Go ahead and see for yourself. You can also check out their full portfolio on Ovni Studio’s website or read their story on Unity.

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