Share your personal stories with the world privately via digital audio creatures.
Earlier this week, Where Thoughts Go–an intimate VR social experience in which you record and share personal voice messages via orb-like audio creatures–launched on the Oculus Quest, offering standalone users the chance to anonymously share some of their most private, inspirational, and emotional stories with a global audience.
Originally debuted during the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival as part of the Virtual Arcade, Where Thoughts Go works by asking the user a series of personal questions pertaining to their life and past experiences. Broken up into individual chapters, users record their responses onto tiny audio creatures that can then be “woken up” and listened to by other users. These questions can vary in topic and tone. One chapter will ask you to describe a certain individual you miss; others may ask you to elaborate on your various loves, fears, and desires.
“I think the biggest thing about VR and storytelling is how it lets us reimagine and reinvent our relationship with information, ourselves as well as each other,” states Rizzotto in response to a Reddit comment. “In Where Thoughts Go other players are abstracted as these small, fragile creatures, and that momentarily changes how you look at people.”
“Being able to hold someone as a small creature as they open up and anonymously tell you a deeply personal story is a unique kind of relationship that the real world (or traditional media) doesn’t offer. And being exposed to those different kinds of relationships & different ways of experiencing humanity allows for all sorts of personal growth.”
I had the chance to try the experience out for myself during its 2018 premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival, and while the utter chaos of the show floor did its very best to take me out of the experience, Where Thoughts Go managed to keep me captivated throughout the entirety of my demo. Sitting cross-legged in a comfortable tent tucked to the side of the bustling crowds, I immersed myself in a series of incredibly personal stories, each more gut-wrenching than the next; all the while swallowing my emotions just well enough to submit my own equally emotional contributions.
Long story short, it’s unsurprising that–since its premiere–Where Thoughts Go has been the recipient of several high-profile honors, including a 2019 Webby People’s Voice award. While the social experience has been available on major PC VR platforms for some time, the convenience and accessibility of standalone technology make the Oculus Quest release the most ideal version of the experience.
Where Thoughts Go is available now on the Oculus Quest for $9.99. According to several comments made by Rizzotto via Reddit, the independent developer is currently exploring the possibility of hand tracking compatibility as well as a new mode better suited for laying back in bed, further adding to the dream-like themes present throughout the experience.
Feature Image Credit: Lucas Rizzotto