2015: Our Remarkable Year in Review
As the unofficial advance party of the VR revolution, we’d like to welcome you all to 2016! It may look suspiciously like 2015, but don’t let first appearances fool you.
A lot has changed over the last 12 months at nDreams, with virtual reality superseding virtual worlds as our driving ambition. Still, you can't know where you're going if you don't know where you've been, so we’re taking this opportunity to recap our achievements from over the last year.
The release of our first mobile VR titles
We’re at the vanguard of VR game development, so we naturally we wanted to get our first efforts into your hands as early as we could. We made good on our ambition by launching our bombastic sci-fi turret shooter Gunner in March and our tropical relaxation sim Perfect Beach in May, both for Samsung’s Gear VR. With Gunner, our goal was to make a game that delivered an easy-to-swallow first taste of VR that would appeal to core gamers, whereas with Perfect Beach we wanted to create an immediately accessible experience for everyone else, one in which you can’t lose and don’t have to win.
October saw the release of Perfect Beach on the Google Play store for Google Cardboard. The reaction has been fantastic - it’s tremendously encouraging to see so many positive user reviews – which has only made us more enthusiastic about Google’s entry-level VR system. In fact, we think that the prospects for mobile VR look very bright indeed… and that’s all we have to say about that, for the time being at least.
Re-introducing The Assembly at E3, Gamescom and EGX
Last May, at a secret location in London, we demoed the re-engineered version of The Assembly to select press behind closed doors. We were thrilled to reveal the refined and enhanced version of the game - our first-person interactive story in VR – which we did with a new trailer and fresh details about the game’s plot. At the same time, the first previews for the game went live, boosting our confidence as we took The Assembly on its biggest outing yet – across the big pond to E3 2015!
How could we top sharing Giant Bomb’s couch with Oculus founder Palmer Luckey at E3? By providing an extended look at The Assembly’s gameplay at Gamescom, obviously, where Senior Designer Jackie Tetley shared more info about the game and the morally-ambiguous world in which it’s set.
However, the biggest test of the game (literally) came when we took it to EGX 2015 in September for its very first public hands-on demos. We think it’s fair to say that we wowed the crowds at EGX, so we’re already looking forward to bringing The Assembly to EGX Rezzed in April later this year. We hope to see you there!
New website, new staff, new investments
2015 also saw us update our look and feel – both externally and internally. We gave our logo and website a rather nifty overhaul, moved the studio into a much bigger space that gives us room to grow (more on that in a future update) and completed not one, but two investment rounds book-ending the year. On top of that, we bolstered our on-site studio staff with some high-profile new hires, which – according to our CEO and founder Patrick – “raised the bar in terms of our studio’s skillset, knowledge base and quality of our future output.”
In fact, we’re looking expand our team even further, so if you’re a super-talented Coder, Artist or Designer, then get in touch!
The road ahead – games, games, games!
2016 is shaping up to be one heck of a momentous year. Before long, we’ll see the launch of Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, PlayStation VR, OSVR… and no doubt several other big technological reveals that aren’t even public knowledge yet. Meanwhile, mobile VR looks to grow from strength to strength - there’s already been a very exciting announcement for Gear VR and the year’s barely even begun!
Above all, this is the year where you will be able to download and play The Assembly in its entirety. We want the game to be ready for the launch of the big three high-end VR headsets and with the way things are shaping up right now, we’re confident we’ll hit that target.
Lastly, while we would never comment on unannounced products or services we’re developing, it’s safe to say that The Assembly isn’t the only iron we have in the fire right now and we’re very much looking forward to shining a light on some of the other stuff we may (or may not) have been (or are) working on (or not working on).
Please delete the above parentheses as appropriate in January 2017.
Would you like to know more?
If you have any questions about The Assembly, feel free to send us a message via The Assembly’s Facebook page or tweet us with the hashtag #TheAssemblyVR.