In place of the in-person event, originally scheduled to be held July 30 – August 2, the convention’s organizers previously announced plans for Gen Con Online, a free-to-attend virtual convention experience featuring livestreaming content, remote gaming, and other online programming.
VRazeTheBar Presents a Virtual Gen Con Experience for Immersive Online Gaming
Indianapolis, Indiana, July 29, 2020 – When Gen Con announced the cancellation of its beloved long-running annual gaming convention in Indianapolis, a team of long-time Gen Con professionals and entertainment tech specialists came together as VRazeTheBar, with the goal of creating a rich, immersive, interactive social experience for fans as part of Gen Con’s online events. Gen Con marks the debut for VRazeTheBar, the first of many other interactive, immersive online events designed to help people gather safely and have fun in the virtual world.
What VRazeTheBar is offering to Gen Con fans and other gamers is the ability to virtually go to Gen Con this year through a new world. VRazeTheBar selected the Linden Lab Enterprise/Education edition of Second Life as the ideal platform to create a virtual Gen Con experience. Second Life is the largest user-created 3D virtual gaming and social interaction world of its kind in the world. It provides the ideal space to create a virtual Gen Con experience for Second Life residents as well as Gen Con fans looking for more immersive play and social interaction.
VRazeTheBar Cofounder and Creative Director Alesia Clardy explains, “Gen Con is a very special experience, that’s what keeps people coming back. It was important for us to recreate, as much as possible, the magic that happens when 70,000 gamers take over downtown Indianapolis every year. So, we have built some of their favorite haunts, including Union Station, around the Convention Center as a starting point that Gen Con veterans will immediately recognize. From there we take off and have created completely new virtual worlds where the imagination can soar.”
Membership in Second Life is free, and users can select their own avatars and customize them in dizzying detail, ideal for fan-based events. Details are available on the website www.vrazethebar.com, for people new to Sedcond Life there is a step-by-step guide. VRazeTheBar “emmisaries” will be available to help.
In VRazeTheBar’s virtual Gen Con experience users will find many of the details that fans love: food trucks and the traditional Saturday night dance as well as a free official Gen Con virtual t-shirt. But more than anything else, it’s really about the games. The game masters have embraced the virtual platform to make some awesomely rich, detailed environments for interactive game play.
“We are hosting a large variety of table-top games and we also are offering periods where people can roam around on their own or with friends, to explore on foot, horseback, or flying. We even have virtual dragon rides. In addition, we will also have some live presentations and panel discussions with industry gaming experts,” adds Alessia.
According to VRazeTheBar Cofounder and Solution Architect, Ron Clifton, “It was important for us to have a stable reliable online platform to create this virtual Gen Con experience. This year is basically a small-scale proof-of-concept experience, but the Linden Lab infrastructure we have chosen will allow us to scale up quickly as demand unfolds. An important component of our solution is live streaming, so that even people who cannot or prefer not to go ‘in-world’ can follow along. Our partner for this, isiLive, will be providing high-performance, private, ad-free streaming for our Gen Con Online events.”
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