December 14

Acclaimed VR Series theBlu: Season 1 out on Transport & Oculus Touch

“Without any doubt one of the most, if not the most immersive VR experience which plays with every sense in your body.”
– VR World

For a majority of first generation VR users, Wevr’s acclaimed theBlu: Season 1 has been both an introduction to the medium and a resounding confirmation of the medium’s long imagined and much hoped-for potential.  The ability to transport an audience into alternate realities, allowing them to explore environments and scenarios never before thought possible, has been realized with this vivid and intensely evocative animated excursion into undersea worlds.

Now, this powerful series, which features an encounter with an 80 foot whale, an undersea migration on the edge of a coral reef, and a journey to the deepest region of the ocean – is available on both Wevr’s Transport and for the recently released Oculus Touch.

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As the director of theBlu: Season 1, Jake Rowell, explains: “one of our main pillars when we started this was to not just make something for gamers or VR experts, but to make something that is an introduction to VR. Because we have to think about that as caretakers of the medium in these first years. We have to find that sweet spot to get as many people comfortable in the medium as possible.”

“For a lot of people it was actually their first demo of room-scale VR,” says senior producer Max Geiger. “The first thing people saw was the whale which was powerful and changed a lot of people’s minds about VR– and sold them on the ability to walk around inside of a completely different reality. For the next two episodes we wanted to start playing with variations in having these encounters and these moments with incredible lifeforms.”

The transformative power of this animated series stems from a deliberately subtle mixture of vivid realism tinged with a dream-like quality which serves to maximize the experience’s sense of Presence – the audience’s perception that they are really present in the environment.

As Jake Rowell explains, “We tried to come up with an art style that fit being underwater and having one of these moments, something most people would never experience in their life.”

Animation director, Andrew R. Jones (“Avatar”, “The Jungle Book”) adds, “You feel that Presence in VR like no other medium and it’s mind blowing.  Anything is possible and that’s what is amazing about it. And with the animation, it sparks a lot of creativity in terms of where we can go with it and what we can do.”

 

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“VR is tapping straight into a part of our brain that is childhood and letting us be kids again,” Jake Rowell says. “Remembering what it’s like to do new things that we’d never thought we’d have a chance to do. It’s the very beginning of the VR. And I think as developers we have to be aware of that medium and the growth of it. What do audiences actually want?  And I think we ultimately we want to be good storytellers.”