By challenging developers to come up with and build concepts in a small amount of time, game jams are a great way of testing out innovative new ideas for VR games. Now Oculus and Kaleidoscope are borrowing that concept and seeing what some of the industry’s breakout artists will do with it.
The pair today announced DevLab, a month long incubation initiative that will challenge 28 VR story tellers and artists to come up with new content for headsets. The program kicks off on October 31st with a two day workshop in Los Angeles where creators will watch talks, live performances and discuss projects with others. From there, they’ll have between November 2nd and December 1st to work on their ideas.
On December 2nd, creators will gather once more, this time at Facebook’s headquaters in Menlo Park, California, to showcase their creations to potential investors. Successful projects will be produced in 2017 and be available on the Oculus Platform.
DevLab creators include Daniel Ernst, creator of the Shoebox Diorama series that’s been around since the early days of the Oculus Rift’s first development kit, Hayoun Kwon, director of the incredible La Peri, and Nick Pittom, who worked on VR short story, Colosse, as well as fan remakes of scenes from Studio Ghibli movies.
DevLab advisers, meanwhile, include Oculus Story Studio Creative Director, Saschka Unseld, Oculus Head of Experiences, Colum Slevin, and Executive Technical Producer at Here Be Dragons, Joe Chen. Program founders include Kaleidoscope CEO René Pinnell, Creative Director Selena Pinnel, and Oculus Creative Producer Yelena Rachitsky.
It’s not the only initiative Oculus is pushing to help VR filmmaking and more. The company is also helping to promote diversity within the industry with initiatives like VR for Good and its VR Launchpad. With the VR specialist investing $500 million in VR content, expect to see plenty more initiatives like this going forward.