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Gamescom 2019 Interview: Somnium Space is a Virtual Investment

Making any sort of investment comes with its own particular risks and rewards, from something as simple as buying an in-game item to putting money into stocks and shares. Many companies have invested in the future of virtual reality (VR) technology and as you’re reading VRFocus you probably have to, most likely by buying a VR headset. However, what about the virtual world itself? It’s long been imagined some sort of VR universe may well become a hub for all content, with projects like Somnium Space creating those building blocks. Yet the platform wants users to have a real vested interest in it by offering virtual land that can be owned and built on. So at Gamescom 2019, VRFocus caught up with CEO and co-founder of Somnium Space, Artur Sychov, to learn more about this grand ambition.

Somnium Space is a vast open-world designed for VR devices like Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. Much like Project Sansar the platform is designed to be a digital social location where people from around the world can meet, socialise, enjoy events, play games and much more.

What makes Somnium Space a little more unique than other VR social experiments is that users can actually take ownership of the land, just as you would do in the real world. Using blockchain as its backbone Somnium Space allows users to purchase ‘land parcels’ on which they can then theoretically build whatever they want. And just as in real life city centre land is more expensive due to its inherent appeal more than land out in the middle of nowhere.

Currently, version 1.0 of Somnium Space is available to download now via Steam for free, with version 2.0 in the works.  Sychov explains that the new edition will add a lot of the features the community has been after, including full-body avatars, SDK’s, enhanced controller support as well as Oculus Go and Oculus Quest support.

A big part on Somnium Space’s expansion will happen this October when the Initial Land Offering (ILO) sale commences. Running from 6th – 13th October you’ll be able to bid for those ‘land parcels’ mentioned. Check out the full interview below with Sychov going into greater detail about version 2.0, blockchain and the decentralised marketplace. As always, for further updates keep reading VRFocus.

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