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Remember a handful of years ago when, suddenly, VR was the hot new thing and the future was looking bright? Every bit of news coming out of the VR space was exciting. The technology, even raw and unrefined, beggared belief. Every testimonial from people who had finally tried it was the same, “You have to try it.”

The wildest part is, for the longest time, there was exactly one option if you wanted to get in on VR. If someone was going to get onboard the VR train there was one system to do it with. That meant, by default, everyone was going to be using the same hardware, running the same software, operating within the same virtual spaces.

In 2012 Palmer Luckey showcased his Oculus Rift prototype at E3. Following that was a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign. Pledges above a certain amount offered actual development kits as a reward. For a brief window of time virtual reality was synonymous with Oculus Rift. A few years later Facebook bought Oculus.

Then another company put out a headset, and their own store. Then another company did the same. These days there are enough competing VR systems to run a top 10 list on which are the best, with plenty left over for the editors to cut. Efforts like the Open Source Virtual Reality Project and Revive Compatibility Layer make software cross compatible, but it’s way more kludgey than it ever needed to be.

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VR went from a thing we’d all be using together to a novelty for a fraction of gamers. That short lived dream of a unified platform lasted just long enough to be taken out behind the shed.

Congratulations to the winner

So, anyway, here’s The 2021 Award For That One Quote Everyone Remembers from Far Cry 3, Brought to you by Far Cry 6’s Insanity DLC. This year’s big winner is the concept of the metaverse. That whole intro you just read? Remove every mention of VR from it and replace it with ‘the metaverse’. That timeline of events? A few word changes and some different hyperlinks fix that right up. Doubtless other examples exist which could be slotted in instead of VR or the Metaverse. There will be more examples in the future.

After all, the definition of insanity…

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