Releasing the VR headset HTC Vive in April, the Taiwan-based smartphone maker HTC is set to unveil its first in-house Virtual Reality (VR) game named Front Defense next week.
The successful performance of HTC Vive has encouraged the smartphone maker to plan its VR move beyond mere hardware.
HTC Vive, which only works with PC, is often considered the VR headset with the best, most immersive experience. When the company started offering pre-orders at the end of February, the price was set at USD 799 and the company sold 15,000 HTC Vive units in the first 10 minutes. HTC started shipping out their Vive units on April 5.
HTC’s new VR game will allow players to experience fighting in a fierce battle using weapons such as pistols, rifles, hand grenades and even anti-tank rockets. It was designed by HTC’s VR software studio, which is dedicated to developing a better VR experience for HTC Vive users.
HTC Vive are partnering with Valve, who provide API for VR developers so that their products are compatible with SteamVR. HTC Vive has other content partners including HBO, Lionsgate, and Google.
A challenge for HTC will be attracting more third party developers. According to a 2016 survey by the Game Developers Conference, only 6% of respondents were developing a game to be released on HTC Vive, compared to 19% for Facebook’s Oculus VR.
HTC launched the accelerator program Vive X in late April, offering USD 100 million to VR startups in Beijing, Taipei, and San Francisco to enrich HTC’s VR content.
Additionally, HTC is having its VR business spinning off as an independent company, according to HTC CEO Wang Xuehong at the 2016 Big Data Industry Summit in Guiyang, China.
HTC is following the market trend. Analysts say that as the smartphone market is getting saturated, VR is the next big thing. A Goldman Sachs report forecasts that in 2025, the revenue generated in VR market may reach USD 80 billion.
(Top photo from Baidu Images)