I-Illusions Devs Explore ‘Unexplored Space’ Of Arena VR With Space Pirate Trainer DX


I-Illusions broke new ground this month with the release of a multiplayer mode for Space Pirate Trainer that requires a 10 meter by 10 meter play space.

Dirk Van Welden and Patrick Hackett from I-Illusions joined us in our studio for a live interview right before releasing the update to every owner of Space Pirate Trainer on Oculus Quest.

“Give me an open space without direct sunlight, that’s a bit lit, that it’s not completely dark, and you can play these games, you can play whatever you want,” Van Welden said. “Every time I’m walking around now in a city I’m thinking where could you play arena?

VR played over this large an area isn’t exactly new, but the way I-Illusions deployed it — directly to players with standalone VR headsets while requiring them to venture into the physical world and find a space that’s compatible with the mode — is certainly something new compared to dedicated location-based VR businesses. The mode was added alongside a more standard versus mode which can be played in spaces of any size battling waves of drones facing off against one another.

If “you want to play a game that simulates motion and a shooter in big environments there’s enough games are doing a great job with that,” Van Welden said. “We just wanted to do something completely new. And the thing is, yeah, you need a big space for it. That’s kind of the downside. And hopefully the thing by itself – finding that space – will be something cool that people are sharing.”

The game includes a level editor as well as a system to discourage you from ever sticking your head into the virtual walls and its creators are hopeful that it’ll help pave the way for this type of entertainment to become more commonplace in the future.

“I hope that it’s just normal that the racquetball arena or the tennis courts are sometimes used by people wearing computer goggles,” said Hackett.

Check out the most interesting bits from the interview in the edited video above or check out the full discussion in our gamescast video below.

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