VR is becoming more popular to the public with the current rollout of VR arcade machines. Arcades are stepping up their game with advanced tech like VR to draw in visitors with activity out of the home.
VR isn’t a fair-weather and overhyped trend like some cynics will say it is. It’s beginning to look more like a rocket with a ton of momentum behind it. Zion Market Research reports that VR is increasing in popularity with the public and in business with a 2016 value of $2.02 billion and a projected value of $26.89 billion.
Who are the pioneers transforming VR games and apps and turning them into arcade machines?
Check out these 3 major players who are stepping up the entertainment industry’s game and elevating the popularity of an industry with out-of-home attractions.
The VR Arcade Machines
Speaking of momentum. If you’ve played Beat Saber on your Vive or Rift, you’ve felt the satisfaction that comes hand in hand with sabering cubes to the beat of EDM tunes like “$100 Bills” and their newest song “Angel Voices”. The rhythm and cube slasher makes players move side to side, under, and around obstacles like a real fitness ninja or Jedi. This summer, they released their own VR arcade machine.
Beat Games, the studio behind the mega-hit game formed partnerships and set up their eye-catching neon red and blue machines at VR arcades in China and South Korea, reports Windows Central. The United States hasn’t seen a Beat Saber machine hit the game room floors of large name and neighborhood VR arcades just yet but will very soon, says the game’s site. Most recently, fans of the game and new users flocked to hundreds of local arcades to play in the worldwide Beat Saber Tournament.
Could Beat Saber’s arcade machine popularize VR even more and urge people to go out and buy VR gear for home use and fitness? We’ll have to wait to see how they fare in Asia, and how they do in America and throughout the world — but all signs look promising.
World War Toons and Metal Slug
VR gamers that are itching to try out a new VR arcade machine that’s also an FPS or first-person shooter game, will get a World War Toons and Metal Slug machine in Quarter 1 of 2019, according to VR Focus. Set in room-scale, World War Toons and Metal Slug (WWT:MSVR) will be a cartoon multiplayer game based off WWII with characters from each title appearing in the game. Studio Roqovan and KT are helping to make their FPS VR arcade machine a reality.
World War Toons used to be a PS VR game that relied on a PS4 controller instead of Move wands for guns, weapons, and movement. Since WWT:MSVR is making moves towards out-of-home VR arcades and room-scale, we wonder if they’ll use Move wands, Touch controllers, Vive wands, or maybe even use one of those with an attachment that feels like holding a gun.
Some players reported that the previous version of WWT caused them to have motion sickness when playing in VR while sitting. Room-scale movement and interaction could help players vestibular system get adjusted to the game without being forced to take a break and is great for keeping players legs moving around instead of sitting or standing in one place.
Are FPS VR arcade machines the way to build more mainstream popularity among consumers for home use? FPS games are great for fitness when they are set in room-scale. There’s no doubt that World War Toons and Metal Slug will attract and entertain a wider variety of players.
Take one part carnival and mix it with VR technology and arcades and you’ve got Two-Bit Circus. The Los-Angeles 37,000 square foot tech arcade is all ages (except after 9 pm on Friday and Saturday it’s 18+) and has just opened this month, Forbes reports. Fully equipped with old-school arcade cabinets and pinball machines, it’s also chock full of tech-forward and active games like VR escape experiences, multiplayer games, an interactive game show, and machines like the button wall to mash on.
Two-Bit Circus is a radically awesome take on entertainment attractions that use VR and XR tech machinery. The company’s room-scale and multiplayer VR games like Hologate, Space Squad in Space, and The Lost City are all active, so there’s more movement in their games than what’s found at let’s say, Chuck-E-Cheese.
Although admission is free the games and attractions do cost money, which is totally worth it for this active gaming experience! Guests can also reserve Cabanas for up to 6 people if guests really want to take their gaming up a notch with quality VR headsets and games.
The team at Two-Bit Circus is shifting how guests are interacting with arcade machines and spending their time away from their VR headsets at home. Will this inspire other arcades and innovators to do something similar in their own hometowns? How we’re being entertained is changing right along with VR and game technology. Two-Bit Circus is the face of that journey and we’re totally here for it.
VR is a billion dollar industry and is growing by the day with advancements in computing, headset, machine, and game quality. Arcade machines are no longer just boxes with joysticks or buttons, they’ve morphed into futuristic headsets with movement heavy games to slice, shoot, and save the world with your friends in.
Will new users play these new VR arcade machines and help popularize VR and XR as a whole?
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