Last month Linden Lab updated its 11-year old Second Life to include support for the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset. It would be easy to pass off its inclusion as simply adding to the social online title’s long list of features. As it turns out, it’s really something of an integral test bed for an upcoming new version of Second Life that will feature full support for the device when it launches.
The developer confirmed that it is working on a new iteration of its online experience to The Next Web. Company CEO Ebbe Altberg revealed that the team was looking to hire 40 – 50 new staff for the ‘massive project’. A beta version is expect to launch in 2015 with the final product following in 2016. Current Second Life members have apparently already been informed of the new version’s existence.
This new version will also offer its users more improved creative options, including the ability to design goods, games and more.
“With technology, market interest, hardware and software available, now is the time to give it another big shot. We have the experience to do it more than anyone else,” Altberg said, referencing Oculus Rift’s inclusion in the project. The company is reportedly still working on how to adjust the user interface (UI) to fit the VR experience.
It’s not clear just when the first look at this new version of Second Life will arrive. Will it keep that name or move in another direction? VRFocus will continue to follow the project’s progress, keeping you up-to-date.