Do you remember the disc battle from Tron? Of course you do. Now do you remember Project Arena from CCP Games last year, the Tron-like versus game that resembled Tron’s disc battles? You might not, but that’s okay; now it’s new and improved with a fresh name: Sparc.
“After our early experiments with standing VR gameplay, we were excited by the idea of building an original sport designed for the current generation of VR hardware. We’ve designed Sparc so that players can express and improve their skill through their physical actions.” said Morgan Godat, Executive Producer at CCP Atlanta. “Ultimately, we want players to think of Sparc as a virtual court in their living room where they can meet and compete with other players from around the world.”
The announcement trailer above really plays up the competitive sport angle, showing footage of real-life people getting ready to fence, box, and play tennis. Since VR headsets only accurately track your head and hands right now, they’ve opted for avatars with no legs in the game.
Gameplay consists of holding what appear to be rackets and knocking a glowing orb back and forth within a bright, neon environment. That’s a bit different than throwing discs like in Tron or Ripcoil.
“At CCP games, our goal is to harness our passion for virtual reality as a new medium and create the killer apps for the first generation of VR technology,” said Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, CEO of CCP Games. “We set out to achieve that in mobile VR with Gunjack and in seated VR with EVE: Valkyrie, both released in the first year of VR becoming publicly available. With Sparc, we want to capitalize on the unique strengths of standing VR and deliver a game with all the depth and excitement to keep players returning long into the future.”
Sparc is currently slated for a 2017 release on Oculus Rift with Touch, HTC Vive, and PlayStation VR (PSVR). This will also be the first original IP shipped by CCP Games since the dawn of the EVE universe. No word yet on cross-platform multiplayer, but since EVE: Valkyrie has it, that’s a safe bet. You can follow the game’s official website for more information.
UploadVR will be going hands-on with the game later tonight, so check back this week for our full thoughts.