It's time to cook! Breaking Bad VR on its way

I'm from Modesto, CA, which has the nickname "Methdesto" because it was one of the biggest sources of meth producing in the country for awhile. So when BREAKING BAD came out, and it concerned meth-cooking and distribution, I was curious to see if they ever mentioned my hometown. Unfortunately they never did (though SONS OF ANARCHY apparently did), but regardless the show got me hooked. It was well-acted, tense, funny, and unique. Though I don't think I'm saying anything revolutionary.

However, what might be revolutionary is a BREAKING BAD VR experience for the Playstation VR, which has creator Vince Gilligan in tow as a creative consultant. How will that be like? Well, here's what president of Sony Interactive Entertainment America Shawn Layden had to say about the project:

I don't know what it's going to be. No idea what it's going to do, but they're very keen at looking at virtual reality as the new medium. It's not an extension. It's not an upgrade of a current medium. It's a brand new platform and movie directors and film directors are going to have to learn new disciplines in order to tell their story in that kind of a world where the viewer's got completely free agency on where they go, where they look, what they see.

Okay...not much info. Not even sure if it's going to involve actors (like a more immersive FMV game), or be fully CG. However, Layden elaborated on the idea of telling stories in new ways with VR:

We brought in 10 or a dozen show runners from Hollywood...You know, all the big name guys. You know, Ron Moore from Galactica and [Frank] Darabont from The Walking Dead. We had Vince Gilligan come up, you know, the guy who did Breaking Bad...To each individual, when they took the headset off, they each shouted an expletive and followed that with, ‘Wow, this just blows up narrative. How do we, how do we create in this kind of world where I can't point the camera and make you look where I want you to look or see what I want you to see.’ But then, of course, you've got their creative juices flowing, if you will...Sony Pictures is doing a lot of work in the non-game space.

So that's interesting to hear. Living in LA, I've actually talked to people in the VR field, and there's been a lot of development, experimentation, and issues of implementation. Right now a lot of "interactive" stuff is relegated to concerts and music videos for the most part, so it'll be interesting to see how stories are told in a more immersive way beyond just changing where you're looking with the camera (which is indeed a game-changer unto itself). However, there are of course a few problems with going farther than that: a) the uncanny valley of CGI on humans (even if we're getting better) that hurts immersion, b) the issue of movement (which all VR games are struggling with, with some games working around it by keeping a D-Pad set up, others by using a cursor to teleport from one area to the next), and c) using real actors in VR causes the use of limiting routines that get cycled (similar to the aforementioned '90s FMV games). I mean, it's worked decently well in things like RICK AND MORTY, but that helps that the characters themselves are animated. I guess only the future knows for sure.

Anyway, any other BREAKING BAD fans out there? And if so, what do you feel about a VR experience? Yay or nay? Either way, sound off below!

Meanwhile, no firm release date on when you can break bad in your VR headset, but we'll keep you posted.

Extra Tidbit: I loved the show, I just wish there was at least one instance of a meth lab blowing up. Just once.
Source: Polygon



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