We’ve been waiting a long time for the Gear VR to get its next big game, and today that’s finally happening.
The VR version of Minecraft has just been released on the platform for $6.99. This version of the title, which requires a compatible gamepad to be played, is very similar to the many other editions of Minecraft, allowing players to explore and build within blocky worlds from a first-person perspective. While it’s possible to play in VR in the traditional sense, you can also experience the game on a giant screen within a themed theatre. You can even use Gear VR’s head-tracking as a former of aiming.
The release actually marks a significant milestone for Oculus itself, as the project has had a troubled history to say the least. Original creator Markus ‘Notch’ Persson had planned to create a VR version of the title for the Oculus Rift back in 2014, but publically scrapped those plans when it was announced that Facebook was to purchase the VR specialist. Notch noted that Facebook “creeps” him out, but later sold the IP and Mojang to Microsoft. Since that time, Oculus CTO John Carmack has made it something of a personal mission to bring Minecraft to Gear VR, and that mission ends today.
This isn’t the end of Minecraft‘s story in VR. The title is also on its way to the Oculus Rift later down the line, as Palmer Luckey announced at last year’s Oculus Connect 2 developer conference. Mojang has also stated that it would not have a problem with porting the VR support to the HTC Vive later on too. Of course, Minecraft is also available on PlayStation 4; could a PlayStation VR version also be in the works?
Either way, this is only the beginning for Minecraft and VR. As one of the most recognisable gaming franchises on the planet the tech stands to hugely benefit from its inclusion in the software library.