In the event you want to share your screen, Oculus is also launching Facebook live streaming today in conjunction with Parties and Rooms, so you can share what you’re seeing in VR with those simply browsing the Facebook mobile app.
To give you a physical presence in VR, Oculus is using a stripped-down version of its Avatars feature, first announced back at Oculus Connect in October, that displays Parties participants as colored, semi-translucent heads.
Nobody will judge you, as nobody can find out your real name.
“Nik” is actually Steve Sweet, 47, a mobile phone salesman from Plymouth.
He, it is fair to say, looks as unlike Keanu Reeves as it is possible to be. They are avatars, online characters who were created by Kristen and Steve in Second Life, an internet fantasy world, where you can reinvent yourself and embark on the kind of adventures you’ve always dreamed of – including a WAG-style white wedding with 20ft train, and even, as we have seen today, the phenomenon of cyber-adultery.
By joining a Room with your friend, you’ll also be able to launch multiplayer Gear VR experiences together.
Oculus wants this to be a way people can replicate the experience of being in the same physical area, even when separated by a long distance.
It gets even weirder once you realise that Kristen’s mother logged on to Second Life to see her “daughter” Kira wed Nik and that Steve’s mate was his best man, watching, all choked up, on the sidelines.
The bizarre event was the culmination of five months of cyber-dating, during which time Kirsten and Steve’s avatars met in Second Life, struck up a virtual rapport, had virtual sex and moved in together, virtually.
Oculus wants people to think of virtual reality as more than a solitary, gaming-centric experience.
To that effect, the company today is launching two new features for the Samsung Gear VR headset that it hopes will encourage users to interact with one another in a virtual hangout.
The first is called Parties, and it’s a simple chat system — much like game chat for Play Station or Xbox — that lets you jump into a voice call and talk with others while wearing the headset.