Virtual reality (VR) continues its steady march in the consumer market this week with the launch of the Oculus Rift head-mounted display (HMD), then the HTC Vive next week. And investment in the industry looks set to continue and grow as the expected popularity of these devices progresses. The latest investment news comes from Starbreeze – creator of the StarVR HMD – as it expands its publishing initiative. The company has announced its investing $750,000 USD in US-based studio Freeform Labs Inc. in regards to the developers upcoming VR title ElemenTerra.
Through this funding Starbreeze will finance the videogames development, receiving 50 per cent of the royalties for the lifetime of the game. The deal will mean Freeform Labs and Starbreeze Publishing AB will each own 50 per cent of the intellectual property rights.
“In our continued pursuit to further advance and evolve in our understanding of virtual reality, we’ve cast a wide net, encompassing several areas; our hardware initiative in the StarVR HMD, developing our own VR experiences as well as in our role as a publisher for other VR centric content producers. We especially acknowledge the importance of research and a young fresh point of view as the industry is collectively exploring an entirely new medium” said Bo Andersson Klint, Starbreeze CEO. “We especially recognize the work done by Freeform Labs and have followed their progress since graduating out of USC Games & Animation. We are very excited to bring the team on board into our publishing initiative and to be able to assist in realizing the great vision they have for ElemenTerra.”
“We’re approaching VR world-building in a unique way that we believe is best suited to foster a prosperous community for everyone who loves to create or explore” said Max Pittsley, CEO of Freeform Labs. “We couldn’t have asked for a better publisher to partner with for ElemenTerra. Starbreeze’s approach to VR is not only extremely innovative, but realistic and practical at the same time. We’re excited to work with Starbreeze to make VR world-building fun and social.”
ElemenTerra is a social VR world-building puzzle game, set around a cataclysmic comic event. Players will be cast as a god-like deity assisting the population of the universe to rebuild the planets.
VRFocus will continue its coverage of ElemenTerra, reporting back with any new updates.