EVE Valkyrie developer CCP Games goes cold on VR
In another sign of scales majorly falling off of eyes where VR is concerned, games developer CCP Games — which made an big early bet on virtual reality gaming — is pulling the plug on two of its studios that had been working on VR titles.
The news was reported earlier by GamesIndustry.biz which obtained the following statement from CCP about the move:
The veteran games developer was seeking a second act for its 12-year old MMORPG, Eve Online. Its early experiments resulted in EVE Valkyrie: One of the first game prototypes for the Oculus Rift. Another of its VR projects, Gunjack, targeted mobile VR.
CCP’s soon-to-be-shuttered Atlanta studio had also been working on a Playstation VR title called Sparc — which it described as “a unique physical sport only possible in virtual reality, in which players compete in fast-paced, full-body VR gameplay”.
While the company is not pulling out of VR development entirely, a statement from CEO Hilmar Veigar Pétursson makes it clear it’s pressing pause and conspicuously stepping back from its former positioning at “front and center in the second wave of VR” — as the commercial reality of very low consumer uptake and interest bites.
And this despite Pétursson sounding very bullish on the VR games market as recently as seven months ago — when the total addressable market was estimated at less than two million units.
“Today we have made tough, but important, changes to CCP in response to how we see the gaming market evolving in the coming years,” he said today. “We will continue to support our VR games but will not be making material VR investments until we see market conditions that justify further investments beyond what we have already made.”
Though he did go on to add that: “Our belief in the long-term transformative power of the technology remains strong.”
But belief in long term tech change is a world away from spying a viable business in the short term and directing your business resources to capitalize on a tangible opportunity.
VR may be very many things in the far-flung future. Right now, for many players, a viable business it’s not.
As we wrote this summer, this VR cycle is dead. Check back in five years. And be happy if you didn’t already bet the farm on an overhyped fantasy.
via TechCrunch https://techcrunch.com
October 31, 2017 at 02:43PM