News on virtual reality (VR) arcades has started to become a regular occurrence, with Viveport Arcade and Raw Data Arcade being two of the most recent. Big names aside, plenty of smaller third-party venues have been popping up such as Ctrl V in Waterloo, Canada. Today the company has announced a road map for 2017, with plans to open at least 10 new VR arcades across Canada in the next eight months.
The first Ctrl V opened seven months ago, with 12,000 unique customers attending the Waterloo location. Recent expansion efforts include a four-station pilot with Landmark Cinemas and a single station location at Kitchener Public Library that is free for public use. An eight-station Ctrl V branded installation also opened up in Edmonton last November. Of the Ctrl V arcades planned for this year, those so far confirmed are Guelph later this month, with Red Deer and Calgary in February, and one in Lethbridge in March.
Ctrl V’s CEO, Ryan Brooks, said in a statement: “Our team anticipated the entertainment industry’s involvement in the expansion of VR back in January 2016, and approached our current industry partners months before we opened our first arcade location; it’s a natural next-step for entertainment and storytelling. We see our platform as being a great complement to the entertainment experience and we are very focused on supporting this aspect of VR expansion.”
Ctrl V is a verified member of the Virtual Reality Standards Board (VRSB), a non-profit organization created for the purpose of regulating and advising commercial VR and augmented reality (AR) facilities. VRSB co-founder, Bernie Roehl said: “As VR continues to grow in popularity, many new players are entering the VR Arcade market. It’s essential for the future success of VR that everyone adhere to some basic, common-sense guidelines in order to ensure the health and safety of users and protect the rights of content creators. Bad user experiences will affect the growth of the industry, and not rewarding developers for their efforts will make it more difficult to find quality content going forwards. I’m glad to see the VRSB working on those two critical areas.”
The compnay is now managing over 40 custom-built VR stations, with its US counterpart, Ctrl V LLC, beginning expansion efforts starting this year. For the latest news on VR arcades, keep reading VRFocus.