Whether you’re putting together a small get-together or an arena-scale event, AltspaceVR is here to help.
AltspaceVR, the last bastion of hope for users seeking to avoid the sheer chaos of VRChat or Rec Room, is stepping up its event hosting services in the hopes of becoming the premier destination for live shows, classes, panel discussions, and meetups in VR.
In an official release sent out yesterday, Microsoft revealed a slew of new features and improvements heading to the social platform that will allow users to more easily create, share, and host their own live events, whether it be a small get-together with a handful of friends or an arena-scale festival open to users around the globe. This latest update introduces a new user interface offering a variety of prebuilt event templates for ad-hoc AMAs, political discussions, community meetups, and nine other additional formats.
This revamped UI also includes revisions to the discovery system, making it easier for users to find new events they may not have come across otherwise. Advertising your live event is as simple as sharing a post to the event page. AltspaceVR now breaks down its catalog of user-made events into categories, allowing users to more easily find the style of content they’re looking for; these categories include Gaming, Meetups, Performances, Presentations, Talk Shows, and Watch-Parties.
The sales of VR headsets skyrocketing this holiday season (the 128GB Oculus Quest is currently selling for $1,000 through third-party sellers via Amazon). In preparation for a potential influx of new players to its platform, Altspace is hosting a dedicated welcome space to assist those new to the experience or VR in general. Similar to past AltspaceVR-sponsored events, this welcome space will be inhabited by both AltspaceVR team members as well as volunteers who can help answer any questions a user may have.
“AltspaceVR is a place to share ideas together instead of sharing a post; give a thumbs up instead of clicking a thumbs up; make friends instead of adding to a friend’s list; build on an idea in person instead of retweeting,” states Katie Kelly, Program Owner of AltspaceVR, in an official release. “Events are AltspaceVR’s answer to posts and tweets. Events are our containers for ideas, entertainment, and creativity. Events bring people together using the power and presence of VR.”
As part of its new focus on user-made events, AltspaceVR will be hosting a “Daily Spotlight Event” every night at 7pm PST/10pm EST featuring an alternating lineup of community events to discover.
This Winter Spotlight Series features the Rooftop Talk Show, an immersive technology-themed talk show covering everything from upcoming events within the metaverse, to discussions with prominent developers and influencers; Acoustic Music with Luke, a live jam session with one of AltspaceVR’s musically-talented community members; and Open Mic Night hosted by Meeka, an open invitation to perform anything from standup comedy to spoken word poetry on stage in front of the community.
There’s also Tech Tock, a weekly talk show hosted by our own Jesse Damiani covering the latest in cutting-edge technology and its continued impact on society; Troy and Matt’s Late Night Barbecue Party, a laidback virtual hang-sesh where you can grab a beer with some friends and play a handful of relaxing games; Rated VR with comedian Chris Ettrick, a late-night talk show in which Ettrick and his guests “navigate their way through sex, love and of course, tequila,”; and Live Music with Mckmuze, a night of music with a VR musician known for their unique blend of acoustic rock and live looping.
As previously stated, AltspaceVR hopes to serve as the primary destination for both smaller, intimate get-togethers as well as arena-scale events. To support a vast number of users while still remaining accessible on as many devices as possible, Microsoft has used the update to once again launch FrontRow, allowing even those operating on mobile-VR headsets the opportunity to participate in live events populated by a nearly unlimited number of attendees.
For even more information on these recent changes, Alex Kipman–Head of Mixed Reality at Microsoft–and Katie Kelly–Program Owner at AltspaceVR–will be breaking down all these exciting features during a live spotlight event going down in AltspaceVR tonight from 6pm – 7pm PST. Visit here to RSVP.
When the concept behind a VR metaverse was first introduced, I always imagined a sprawling virtual environment populated by millions of unique avatars controlled by human users from all around the globe. Cut to 2019, and what we have is more of a collection of unsupervised digital daycares and meme-filled nightclubs littered with scantily-clad anime characters and foul-mouthed pigeons with an extremely loose grasp of English vocabulary. That’s not to say these aren’t fun experiences, because they most certainly can be; but sometimes it’s nice to put on a headset without the fear of being screamed at by a surprisingly-aggressive 10-year-old. AltspaceVR remains one of the few places a user can visit to engage in more structured, mature conversations and interactions.
I’m also excited to see AltspaceVR continuing its habit of planting real-life team members within the experience to assist users. Microsoft could have easily introduced an automated tutorial to handle any questions or concerns; instead, they’re taking the time and resources to fill their servers with real guides. For me, this adds a certain level of community that other VR social platforms have been unable to deliver thus far.
Feature Image Credit: AltspaceVR, Microsoft