OTHERWORLD – A Pop-up VR Arcade and Bar in London, UK
Self-Introduction from Dream Corporation:
For two weeks only, The Dream Corporation brings its Otherworld arcade to Old Street Underground, the electrified core of the Silicon Roundabout. Similar in function to the arcades of the 70s and 80s, Otherworld is a vividly designed and fully-licensed VR pop-up providing full-body immersive gaming experiences. VR arcades are just beginning to emerge around the world, but Otherworld is set to be Zone 1’s first and the nation’s best; our immersion rooms provide the most powerful virtual reality experiences London has to offer.
Motion capture cameras track your entire body in three- dimensional space, allowing you to move freely within the virtual environment. On the screens in the lounge area, your friends can see and hear everything you can until they succumb to a raging case of FOMO and get their own room and headset. Then you can play in multiplayer co-op, seeing their avatar right next to you in the virtual environment despite being in the booth next door.
Our games are a curated selection of the platform’s very best – all killer, no filler. Running them in tandem with HTC’s top of the range Vive headsets, Audio-Technica headphones and high-spec PCs, Otherworld gives you the freedom to escape this world and explode into another – somewhere your dreams are your reality. You can fight a zombie apocalypse, paint 3D masterpieces, travel the world, take on hordes of space pirates, practice your archery… The list goes on.
We also have a bar, which can only add to the experience.
Who are we?
Christopher Fraser Adams
Growing up in the rural idyll of North Yorkshire, Chris went looking for Otherworld from a young age. An avid PC gamer, his first foray into the world of commerce as a teenager was in game hosting, setting up the tech to host major e-sports competitions.
He studied ancient history and literature at Oxford University, and embarked on a career as something of a shrink for businesses. Starting out at McKinsey & Company, he’s since worked with Intercontinental Hotels Group, Centrica, Credit Suisse and Carwow as an independent advisor.
Far from the tournaments of his earlier years, Chris believes technology is at risk of isolating us. He sees a widening gap between idea and reality; between motion and action. He believes an Otherworld can unite us.
Co-Founder, Creative Director
Ed studied film at the University of Southern California and literature at Oxford University, graduating with honours despite having spent most of the time playing video games.
He then spent 3 years as a London-based screenwriter, selling four feature-length films before foreseeing the death of conventional cinema in a dream. Shortly afterwards, friend and mentor Dr. Horatio Sands loaned him an HTC Vive in attempt to shake him from existential despair.
He describes his first experience of immersion as ‘a religious experience’ and now dedicates himself to the advancement of VR as both entertainment and art.
What makes us different?
The most distinctive feature of Otherworld’s approach is its commitment to the psychological aspect of the Virtual Reality experience, not just the technical. Unlike other arcades, our immersion rooms close you off from the outside world, allowing you to forget the real world completely. Nothing ruins an immersive experience more than the feeling of people watching you, something our founders felt acutely on a trip to sample other arcades first-hand.
“Virtual Reality involves covering your eyes and ears, which instinctively makes us feel vulnerable, self- conscious. We’ve solved that problem. The only people you can see and hear, and vice versa, are the friends you’re playing with – right next to you as avatars. In order to experience immersion in the Virtual World you have to be able to forget the real one. Then, just for a while, it’s a lucid dream. A journey into pure escapism.” – Ed Wardle, Co-Founder, Creative Director.
Secondly, Otherworld isn’t just a place to play games with friends. We’re the nation’s first fully-licensed virtual reality arcade and are proud to present a venue with cold enough booze and smooth enough tunes to be a great time even if you have no intention of gaming – although we assure you it won’t be long before the players’ delight persuades you otherwise. Video Arcades used to be places where people went to hang out, not just in-and-out one-offs. And we’re a hangout like no other.
Thirdly, we’re completely wireless. Though they have barely been released, Otherworld’s headsets are completely untethered, eradicating clunky cables and leaving you completely free of real-world distractions. If it’s not virtual, you don’t experience it.
When are we?
After incorporating in just July 2017, The Dream Corporation will launch its first Otherworld arcade on November 7th in Old Street Station and will run until November 18th.
Where are we going?
“We believe virtual reality should be social — about friends and family exploring new worlds together. Our customers agree, and the response we’ve already had has been phenomenal,” explains Chris Adams, Co- Founder and CEO. “With our November pop-up we are showing the true potential of location-based virtual reality.”
“We’re now speaking with investors and plan to raise funds in the new year. Our first permanent locations will be in Shoreditch, Hammersmith and Glasgow — with larger venues, bolder visual designs, and a bigger food and drinks selection.”
“The potential is exciting. In the UK alone, the gaming, sports and film industries are worth around £15 billion each year. Otherworld stands at the junction between them all.”