Did you have a good Saber Day Weekend? No, that’s not a typo. That’s the nickname that VR-arcade company Main Event wants to give to Labor Day to celebrate the launch of Beat Saber at its event centers.
Beat Saber is one of the top VR games on multiple platforms like Oculus, Steam VR, and PlayStation VR. But now you no longer need to own a headset yourself to experience the lightsaber-wielding rhythm action. Instead, you can head into one of Main Event’s 43 locations to play it with your friends.
It’s like a karaoke night for Jedi.
“We don’t know if we can officially change the name … from Labor Day to ‘Saber Day,’ but inside Main Event centers this weekend, our guests are certainly in for a life-changing experience with Beat Saber,” Main Event chief brand officer Sarah Beddoe said in a statement. “We are constantly pushing innovative ways to treat our guests to experiences they can’t get anywhere else, and by being the first family entertainment center in the country to introduce Beat Saber, we think we’ve done just that.”
For VR enthusiasts, it might seem odd that Main Event is positioning Beat Saber as a huge attraction. After all, the game is ubiquitous for fans who already own VR hardware like Oculus Quest or HTC Vive. But the number of people who own a headset is a fraction of the population. At the same time, Beat Saber is still a breakout hit. So millions of people have likely heard of the game but have never tried it. So Main Event is trying to serve that audience.
Main Event is the latest evidence that Beat Saber is VR’s killer app
Beat Saber already established itself as the defining game of this generation of virtual reality. But Main Event has helped to further that case. While VR installations are a popular and growing market, many of them focus on proprietary experiences you can’t get anywhere else. And that makes them expensive and more like attending a theme park.
What Main Event is doing with Beat Saber is exactly like I already described: it’s treating it like the next generation of karaoke.
Main Event’s arcades feature bowling, laser tag, and billiards. It is not trying to be Disneyland. Instead, the company is creating entertainment centers where families can go and have a good time on a whim. And Beat Saber’s appeal is so universal that it makes since that it fits in with all of that.