Of the many virtual reality (VR) titles being primed for the launch of the Oculus Rift and Project Morpheus headsets, it’s arguably CCP Games’ EVE Valkyrie that is being championed by both hardware vendors. The videogame is at the forefront of the collective mindset for gamers and VR, but that’s not through any kind of luck or PR campaign, it’s through good old fashioned elbow grease, as CCP Games’ Sigurdur ‘Siggi’ Gunnarsson, Senior Programmer on EVE Valkyrie, explained to VRFocus at this month’s EVE Fanfest 2014.
“We have a few people [that are] really passionate about VR, including myself.” States Siggi when asked about how the project began. “We’ve been at this now for quite some time. We were really early believers in this whole thing.”
Siggi is well known in VR communities, openly expressing his love of developers who work within the space. In the short time Siggi spent with VRFocus he revealed that he’d backed numerous projects on Kickstarter, including the Sixense STEM, Xing: The Land Beyond and, of course, the Oculus Rift itself.
“It just so happens that we were working at CCP where we have this wonderful environment. We have this pool of talented people who were interested in doing this and giving their spare time… So it was kind of a perfect storm; just the right people in the right places.” States Siggi, modestly deferring a lot of the success EVE Valkyrie has already benefited from to his colleagues.
Furthermore, Siggi is convinced that much of that success can be accredited to CCP Games; the way in which the company is run and the open-minded nature of the authority figures. He suggests that the management teams never once conflicted with the idea of developing EVE VR and subsequently turning the technical demo into the full videogame title, EVE Valkyrie.
“Having the opportunity, being in a great company like this. Also having leaders and managers who believe in our vision as well… because what you see in the news recently, about bigger companies, is that they always look at the bottom line. I mean, we do as well… but we have leaders who are true visionaries.” States Siggi in unwavering praise for his superiors. “Having that environment and being able to form our own studio really… it’s almost like we get to be like a start-up company within a bigger company.”
Siggi is one of two developers who began working on EVE VR as a technical demo, joined by Rob Clarke, before the team began to grow in size. VRFocus met with several members of this team at EVE Fanfest 2014 and will bring you more details on their views of EVE Valkyrie and VR in general very soon.