VR Digest: Oscar nomination for Google’s ‘Pearl’;
two years of VR Digest

The week's top VR news brought to you
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VR Digest: A VR newsletter brought to you by Studio Transcendent
written by Ian Hamilton (@hmltn) issue 104 – January 25, 2017

VR Digest: A Virtual Reality newsletter brought to you by Studio Transcendent

Hi Friends,

This issue represents the two year anniversary of VR Digest from Studio Transcendent. Back when we started this weekly newsletter, the Vive was still a secret and Oculus only offered the choice of a developer kit or an “innovator edition”. The Digest’s weekly archives are a snapshot of an incredible technology as it transformed from science fiction into a commercial reality.

Aaron, John, Ian, Bowdy, and Elissa
at Studio Transcendent

Oscar Nomination For Google’s ‘Pearl’

This week, we note Google’s tear-jerking VR story Pearl is getting an Oscar nod. The nomination for Animated Short Film is for a theatrical version that hasn’t been shown widely yet. Pearl is the result of a collaboration between Patrick Osborne and Google VR. It explores the same story in several different versions built for different ways of viewing. You can watch the 360-degree version right now on YouTube, with another version on Viveport for the HTC Vive. Then there is the theatrical version that was just nominated for an Academy Award.

Arizona Sunshine Earns $1.4 Million in First Month

Vertigo Games announced its VR zombie shooting game Arizona Sunshine passed $1.4 million in sales during its first month of availability. The game launched on both the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift with Touch controllers in early December for around $40, and might represent VR’s fastest-selling game. The figure is the latest number suggesting hand-controlled games that let you move around a room in VR might be finding enough sales success to support small teams.



The Sundance Festival is underway in Utah with VR spread across several venues at the event. If you have a Rift, be sure to check out Dear Angelica from Oculus Story Studio which premiered at the festival and launched the same day.

Oculus co-founder Nate Mitchell made a rare appearance on Reddit to say a tracking update would arrive this month to fix some 2-sensor and 3-sensor Rift configurations.

Resident Evil 7: Biohazard released on PlayStation 4. It is possible to play its entire horrifying storyline in the PSVR headset.

Multiplayer art app MasterpieceVR launched on Steam for free, offering a combination of features seen in other creativity apps including sculpting and drawing.

The Lawnmower Man will be reborn as a VR series.

MIYUBI is a 40-minute experience seen through the eyes of a toy robot in the ‘80s on the way from Felix & Paul.

Studio Transcendent will be participating in LA’s Night on Broadway on January 28th. The fastest growing one day arts & music festival in North America, Night on Broadway is a free arts and music festival which awakens beautiful historic theatres and the blocks between them along the Broadway corridor in Downtown Los Angeles.  We’ll be showcasing our VR experiences on the street at Broadway and 7th.  Come say hi and check out this great event for the public. View press release here.

This past October, Elizabeth Amini of the Trojan CEO Network and ACTA hosted a virtual reality showcase and panel at the USC Marshall School of Business, focusing on VR in the wellness space. The panel included Studio Transcendent’s Co-Founder, John Dewar; Director of the Brain Mapping Society, Vicky Yamamoto; Cosmo Scharf of VRLA & Visionary VR; as well as Alex Marchetti of AppliedVR, Studio Transcendent’s partner in the field of VR for healthcare.

Check out our blog post for audio clips as well as transcripts from the panel.

VR Digest™ is a Virtual Reality Newsletter brought to you by Studio Transcendent, a producer of premium Virtual Reality experiences. We publish weekly on Wednesdays.

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