We weren’t dreaming.
Disney and Universal Studios had VR experiences — 10 minutes for $100+.
You could look down and see your “arms” holding the magic carpet as you flew through some Arabian back alleys as Aladdin.
You could wander on a complex trackball treadmill in a closed, Running Man style arena with what looked like a corkgun, carefully walking around obstacles and shooting your cork at Lawnmower Man-esque avatars.
Then it all went away.
Entire kits with “3 Dimensional gaming glasses” were liquidated for a few hundred dollars, including random, incomplete games to play.
I came so close to spending hard-earned summer chore savings on one. Surely this could not be the same mind-melting equipment? Off to landfills they went, buried next to the fabled ET Nintendo cartridges and later joined by Virtual Boys, and Atari Jaguars.
Like a techno-fashion cycle, we’ve figured out a better fit, materials, experience. It’s been oversold and overhyped, yet brings us back to analyzing reality again. In creating a virtual version with greater freedoms, we become aware of the limitations and injustices of our physical and current world.
The VR winter was not in vain.