Success of one developer or product manufacturer in the overall VR ecosystem can have reverberating effects throughout the industry. Cybershoes, the world’s first accessory for walking and running in VR, launched their second successful Kickstarter campaign last week and that success will benefit VR esports.
In 2018 Cybershoes conducted a successful Kickstarter and raised more than 214,000 Euros from over 1,000 backers. Since that time they’ve shipped more than 3,000 Cybershoes for wired headsets on SteamVR.
Last week the company launched a Kickstarter campaign for the wireless Oculus Quest version and surpassed its crowdfunding goal on the first day, raising over $30,000 in less than 12 hours.
This new campaign that will contribute to increased production, distribution, and awareness of Cybershoes. It’s also on track to hit the next stretch goal that will fund the development of a Cybershoes App to emulate Oculus Quest touch controllers as well as make a large number of games accessible.
As more games become accessible, this increases options for VR esports players. On SteamVR Cybershoes is already compatible with any VR game that supports free locomotion, such as Arizona Sunshine, Doom VFR, Fallout, Skyrim and Seeking Dawn, as well as Pavlov and Onward. With their planned app, the developers aim to achieve a similarly wide range of support for Quest games – while they say they’re also constantly on the outlook for studios who want to partner with them for native integration.
Vankrupt Games’ Pavlov and Downpour Interactive’s Onward are featured in the community-driven VR Master League, which began collaborating with Cybershoes in August 2020 during Gamescom.
Along with some of the most well-known YouTuber personalities, Cybershoes and VR Master League joined forces during the event to feature an Onward Tournament. There were 15 players across three teams playing Onward death matches.
“For the first time, we really understood the ‘sport’ in esports,” states Igor Mitric, co-founder and COO at Cybershoes. “The adrenaline and excitement of strapping on Cybershoes and a headset, and performing a mic check… it’s really something.”
When talking about expectations for VR esports, Mitric goes on to explain that he wanted to see more than players simply looking through a headset and using a thumbstick.
“It should be fully immersive,” he states, “strapping the in-game character’s boots to the player’s feet while exploring virtual worlds. Our purpose as a company is to make shoes for VR explorers. We believe that VR esports athletes are professionals that deserve the best virtual footwear on the market, and our goal is for Cybershoes to fulfill that need.”
The Gamescom experience made a positive impression on Mitric and others at Cybershoes, leading them to formally sponsor VR Master League and open the door for future tournaments and events. Currently the company sponsors Onward, Pavlov, and Caveman Studios’ Contractors tournaments, providing free Cybershoes to the season winners.
“Cybershoes has been greatly contributing to VRML and we’re honored to have them as partners,” states DaKinMan, founder of the VR Master League platform. “When we heard about their new product in the works and their Kickstarter, we were excited to support their endeavors. VRML is hyped that Cybershoes will be offering an untethered experience.”
VR esports fans who want to support Cybershoes can receive a special bonus when they support the Kickstarter campaign and pledge $60 or more as they’ll receive a customized VR esport jersey with the gamertag of their choice.
Anticipated delivery of the jerseys is April 2021. As new games like BigBox VR’s Population One ($110,000 stretch goal) are integrated with Cybershoes, even more options become available in terms of competitive gaming with the accessory. VR gamers will be able to put on their jerseys, strap on their shoes, and hop into various VR games feeling like the pros.
If you’re interested in supporting the Cybershoes for Oculus Quest Kickstarter campaign, visit their project site.