google cardboard

rAge expo Cape Town 2016 is just a few days away, and we’re getting in a trickle of what the stands for this (technically inaugural) expo will feature. First up was Unplug Yourself, which is always a treat to visit because boardgames are so much fun, particularly when you’re exploring new ones with friends. Like last year’s rAge in Johannesburg, VR was its own theme at the expo, with no less than six booths offering gamers a chance to experience VR for the first time with various versions of the Oculus Rift on display. For rAge Cape Town, The Virtual Space, a VR-focused start-up, will be showing off Google Cardboard to expo-goers, and will sell their modified designs at the expo as well as setting up a few hands-on experiences for those in line waiting to try.

 “We are producing Google Cardboard 2 units locally and will be selling them at rAge,” said Richard McAdam, owner and founder of the company. “Our units have a couple of standout features. They are coated to resist dirt, so they last well. They also have a unique trigger design that uses a single conductive strip for very high reliability.”

“We have headstraps for our Cardboard 2 units and when one is purchased with a headstrap, we also provide a sponge rubber nosepad that makes the unit more comfortable to wear,” he added.

The Virtual Space will have some Cardboard headsets along with Bluetooth-based game controllers running a few demos. One of these, Wizard Academy VR (woah, that title, man!), will be on display, and features fully 3D environments where you can go on walkabouts and be a wizard. (‘Arry!)

The company also said that they’d be shooting some 360-degree video footage of the expo, and it’s set to be available sometime during the rAge weekend. So, you know, you can look around the expo while being at the expo in one place. If that’s not trippy, it’s at least going to make your mind warp a bit when you walk past a stall that you walked by before only in VR.

I asked McAdam if the company was planning to get into any other VR gear, and his reply was that their focus and energy was all on Cardboard, though this will probably change in the near future. The Cardboard 2 kit will cost R249 and the headstrap is available separately for R49. A carrying pouch for the Cardboard 2 headset comes included.

Check out their linked website and make sure you visit their stand in Cape Town’s GrandWest Casino and Entertainment World in Goodwood. rAge expo Cape Town takes place on the weekend of 18-20 March 2016. Tickets into the show will be R100 per person for the day, R250 for a weekend pass, and kids under six years old can enter for free.

Website: The Virtual Space

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