This Week in VR Meet-Ups

By Nick Whiting

Now is such an exciting time to be on the ground floor of virtual reality. This week there were VR meet-ups on each coast of the US, and I attended both.

VRLA hosted the second meet-up for VR enthusiasts in the Los Angeles area on Monday evening. Cosmo Scharf organized a great event at the ISC Mixed Reality Lab, where we experienced everything from medical applications to more traditional games in VR. 

VRLA was a huge success!

Ray Mosco from Oculus and I were there giving demos of Epic’s “Couch Knights,” the Unreal Engine 4 multiplayer project we built for Oculus to showcase the DK2 at GDC earlier this year. I’d like to give a shout out to Ray for bringing along an extra Tiki PC and two early release DK2s!

One cool thing to note about this mixer was the diverse makeup of those who showed up. I met folks from the film and VFX industry, defense and robotics professionals, lawyers and tons of hardware hackers. 


VRLA outdoor play

We saw a similarly diverse crowd at yesterday’s RTP-VR meet-up which at Epic Games headquarters in (hot and humid) Cary, NC. Lots of folks from architecture, simulation and serious games, mobile development, education and other market segments all came out to get their hands on VR demos and learn more about the current state of the art in the field.

RTP-VR meet up

We had fun showing off “Couch Knights” once again, and would like to give special thanks to Artem Bolgar from Oculus for making the trip down to NC and bringing along extra hardware to boot. Artem was very generous with his expertise and time!

An Oculus VR headset

Like the LA group, this was RTP-VR’s second meet-up. The numbers quintupled, from 30 at the Cary Hibernian pub in May to 150+ at Epic HQ last night. We had a blast with everyone and can’t wait to do it again.

Lastly, Dana Cowley and I chatted a little about VR and our next efforts toward time-warping in UE4 on yesterday’s Twitch.tv/UnrealEngine stream, which you can watch here.

Have any thoughts on VR? Join us in the forums.

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