Virtual reality-styled promotions are taking off in a big way this year as a deep and memorable way to engage with audiences. The technology made prominent appearances at this year’s New York Comic-Con, where fans lined up to take experience their favorite games, shows and movies like never before.
These are the experiences that are leaving a lasting impression at the comic book convention.
Westworld: A Delos Destination
HBO’s Westworld takes place in a kind of theme park where robotic hosts pose as human characters, and guests are allowed to do anything they desire without fear of harm, judgment or consequences. The show, which premiered on Sunday, has already been compared to video games, so it’s no surprise that there would be an actual video game to help promote it. Actors that are dressed all in white with robotic speech and mannerisms welcome guests to the VR experience, Westworld: A Delos Destination.
The experience itself, which uses the HTC Vive, puts players in the role of a new guest into the world of Westworld. Players are given a short orientation by a virtual host before the experience transforms into a brutal behind-the-scenes look at what makes the theme park tick. Westworld is also hosting a screening of its second episode on Sunday.
John Wick Chronicles: An Eye For An Eye
A virtual reality-based video game based in the John Wick movie universe has been in the works for quite some time, and New York Comic-Con attendees are among the first to check out the first chapter of the John Wick Chronicles, titled An Eye For An Eye, before it officially releases. The experience is based in the movie world, and players take the role of John Wick, who must survive against waves of attackers. Players don an HTC Vive and are given ten minutes to survive as long as possible without taking too much damage.
Developed in cooperation with Lionsgate Entertainment, the VR game helps to build up hype for the next film. The game’s developers, Starbreeze Studios, also has John Wick crossover content in its hit heist game, Payday 2, in the form of a John Wick mask and special weapons.
Resident Evil 7: Lantern
October is the time for big scares, and Resident Evil is one of the most recognizable survival horror franchises around. The developer, Capcom, first showed its prototype VR horror experience, Kitchen earlier this year, and now it’s following up with Lantern at the New York Comic-Con. The PlayStation VR experience is tied with the Resident Evil 7 Beginning Hour demo that is out now, and players are challenged to make their way through a decrepit house with while a crazed character pursues them.
Since Resident Evil 7 will be completely playable in VR when it releases next year, the showcase provides a significant look at what players can expect from the game. Furthermore, the demo will be included with the PlayStation VR when launches next week.
Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration
Tomb Raider fans will have a chance to get an intimate look at Lara Croft’s past when Rise of the Tomb Raider: 20 Year Celebration releases for the PlayStation 4 next week. For the first time, the series will be brought to virtual reality in a short experience called Blood Ties, where the iconic character must find her way through forgotten parts of Croft Manor to uncover its secrets. Although it isn’t as action-oriented as the main game, the VR experience provides fans with a new way to appreciate the series.
The game marks the 20-year anniversary of one of the most iconic characters in video games, and takes advantage of the PlayStation VR, which also launches next week.
Rick and Morty Simulator: Virtual Rick-ality
Adult Swim does not shy away from experimenting with creative and innovative ways to engage with its audience. The Rick and Morty virtual reality experience, Virtual Rick-ality, is an open world experience where players get to mess around with objects and environments from the show. Attendees get to experience the game at the convention using the HTC Vive before it officially releases for PC.
Legends of the Hidden Temple
Attendees were able to face-to-face Olmec, the statuesque character from Nickelodeon’s popular game show, Legends of the Hidden Temple at New York Comic-Con. However, instead of having to complete a series of obstacles, they are challenged to complete a discovery game using the Samsung Gear VR. The experience was developed to promote the upcoming Legends movie to gain fans that might not have watched the 1990s kids’ game show.
Virtual reality film company, Jaunt VR, decided to focus on horror experiences at the New York Comic-Con this year. The variety of 360-degree videos showcased at the convention include The Black Mass Experience and Zombie Purge, a short film where viewers watch the action from the bed of a pickup truck as survivors battle their way through a zombie apocalypse. One of the more esoteric films include The Game, where a woman must make find her way through a deadly underground maze while a director monitors events from a control room. Attendees experienced these films using the Samsung Gear VR, and almost all of them are available now on the Jaunt VR app.