Wearables Let You Experience Star Wars at The VOID
With Ready Player One out in theaters and VR headsets available to home users, art and life are not so far removed from one another these days. As wearable technology advances, we are getting closer to experiencing something similar to Halliday's OASIS.
Even still, for now, VR remains mostly an audiovisual experience, though forthcoming products like HaptX's sensory glove will you feel virtual objects, and Hardlight VR's haptic jacket will provide tactile responses from virtual actions. But even these wearables aren't quite as advanced as Wade and Samantha's gear that allows them to enter the OASIS as Parzival and Art3mis. A fully-immersive experience in your own home is still away off. But until we have the OASIS, we have The VOID.
We recently experienced The VOID which turned a storefront in a Glendale, California mall into the lava-covered planet of Mustafar from Star Wars. Brought to reality by The VOID and Lucasfilm's ILMxLab, Secrets of the Empire allows you to go undercover as a Stormtrooper. The experience at a just a handful of locations currently–but hopefully more soon.
In the game, your mission is to sneak around an enemy base in order to retrieve important information. However, not only do you see –but you feel– what it's like to be disguised as a Stormtrooper.
Check out the trailer:
You put on a vest, backpack, and VR headset, which uses Rapture technology developed for The VOID by Optimal Design. Once activated, you and your three other teammates become Stormtroopers. You look at your hands, and you have Stormtrooper hands! You look at your friends. Your friends are now Stormtroopers! It's wilder than a pack of Tatooine womp rats!
Watch how RAPTURE technology works, below:
There are additional sensory surprises like temperature changes and other effects that are made possible by the location's engineering. All in all, it's more convincing that we thought it would be. We were bummed when the experience was over and hungry for more immersive storytelling.
So, until we achieve the level of wearable technology that Wade and Samantha use to access the OASIS, we can visit location-based VR exhibits to get a better sensory experience and to kick some Galactic Empire butt. If you're more into ghosts than rebels, The VOID also offers Ghostbusters: Dimension in select locations.
We are excited for what other stories we can join in soon. It feels like the just start of a whole new variety of virtual reality entertainment.