Ready Player One fails to boost VR popularity


SL blogger Wagner James Au wrote an article recently on how Ready Player One has not done anything to help Sansar’s popularity, despite Sansar having an exclusive (and very well-made) RP1 experience.

Philip Rosedale left a comment on the article adding that the problem is even bigger than just Sansar:

In short, RP1 has failed to increase even basic interest, much less popularity, in VR. People aren’t even searching for VR more than they were before, much less actually trying it.

This is not surprising to me at all. I’ll repeat what I more or less already said elsewhere:
RP1 is an overhyped videogame movie. VR was secondary in the movie, despite the book’s original intent. The way the movie was marketed made it obvious that the movie would do nothing for the VR industry. It was never meant to be anything more than a casual popcorn flick with explosions and action, not something that actually makes you think about VR and the impact it will have on society in the future. Ready Player One is a dumb fanservice movie for gamers, nothing more. And even gamers are not sold on VR yet, despite being the ones most likely to adopt it.

If a movie or TV show is all it would take to make VR popular, it would’ve happened ages ago. Ready Player One is NOT the first entertainment production involving VR. It’s been done before. So many times. Friggin’ Digimon did VR back in 1997. And Digimon was massively popular.

People really latched on to this movie as the messiah that would bring the beginning of a new VR age. For the last several months I’ve been hearing people in-world say bizarre things like “I gotta check out that domain before the Big Day, when the movie drops and droves of people start rushing in here and lagging everything.” People were so certain that would happen. It was funny as hell. :joy:

I get it though. People just really want VR to take off. Understandable. So do I! But I know it’s gonna be a lot harder than some flashy Hollywood movie. There are many problems the VR industry (and social VR platforms like HiFi) still have to address. People wanted a shortcut to success, but that’s not how it works. That’s not how any of this works! Until the biggest barrier of entry is gone - the PRICE of hardware - VR can NOT become mainstream. Doesn’t matter how successful the movie or any other VR movie like it is.

Make that mobile port of High Fidelity awesome, make it work well, and you will be much more likely to achieve success. Newer generations don’t want to buy a bulky PC. If it’s not on their phone, they won’t care. PCs are for nerds like us. You want VR to be popular, then make it for more than just a small crowd of nerds.


The idea that we could see any effect after only one week is a bit absurd. If this movie have seeded the concept of VR in some mind, I don’t think these people could realistically land in Sansar and HiFi before at least one month.
Those who will be interested will have to consider the investment, for some it means time. Just get the gearing will take a certain time (we are talking of a new computer for many.) Then, once they will get the equipment, they will certainly take a long moment to explore different games (starting by the free stuff). And a fraction of them will reach our universe only after have done all that.
Let’s recheck the stats in one month… at least.

Also the movie has reached the top of the box office only last week end, this means that lot of people haven’t already saw it. And it’s even more true that a significant quantity of people won’t even see it in a cinema but in streaming only in a couple of months.


Don’t know why a mivie would boost VR ‘It’s just a movie’ Btw, one i have not seen or read. Only seen the CES experience. But to sy, wow ! you really need to buy VR to see it, not really.

It’s important that desktop support get much better implemented. And the platform need to be cheap. The part that is harder for high fidelity then sansar at this moment. And sorry, but mobile is a not friendly platform to work with. And sadly that type of hard to work with app interface you see back in hifi desktop.


Worry not folks… a solution is in the pipeline…


It plants some seed in the mass market I think, but if VR is constantly perceived as ‘escapism’ then its on par with things like fiction books, comics, hobby etc and in direct competition with them. These are not industries that are rolling in dough lately. The cheap or free and immediate access that the popular internet demands, means VR is several tiers (cost/complexity) away from the much simpler and direct means of escapism.

Add: I have read the book but not seen the movie, I liked the book a good read. A big problem remains is the motion sickness related physicality of our meat containers back here in RL, Some of the scenes and action sequences in my view would need some kind of neural brain interface where we are ‘sleeping or dreaming’ rather than trying to hold onto our cookies behind glorified ski goggles.