Virtual reality looks like it is potentially the future of consumer entertainment, but one of the industry’s biggest cheerleaders believes you can create content for it as well.
Oculus VR founder Palmer Luckey revealed that his company is giving away a free four month trial of the Unity Pro development engine to everyone who orders the $599 Rift virtual reality headset. This will enable everyone with the device to start building games and experiences using Unity’s new VR tools, where you can edit a 3D space while moving around inside of it. This could expose a huge number of VR fans to a market that tech advisor Digi-Capital predicts will reach $120 billion in revenues by 2020. And Luckey also humorously pointed out that it could also make him a few more bucks as well.
“We want everyone to be a creator,” said Luckey.
This appeal to consumers goes hand-in-hand with Luckey’s other major point that in order for VR to grow, everyone involved will have to find success. This was his way of telling the developers amassed at the Unity event that their needs are his needs.
“[The key metrics for success are] mostly going to be dollars spent on content or hours viewed on content,” he said. “It’s not just buying something. If we can make something that people use every day, that’s a good sign for VR as an ecosystem. That means developers are going to be successful. It means developers make more money, and I make more money.”
This last point about Luckey’s bank account elicited some chuckles from the crowd, but the Oculus founder assured the audience that he is serious.
“Ecosystems only really work when everyone in the chain is successful,” he said.
He doesn’t want to see that Oculus is making money from Rift but most developers are not. And it just so happens that when he says “developers” he is talking about everyone who buys a Rift.