‘Doctor Who’ VR Experience is Coming Soon to Vive, Rift & Oculus Mobile, Trailer Here


The BBC debuted their latest VR experience, Doctor Who: The Runaway, at Tribeca Film Festival last week. Now, the company’s VR division says the 12-minute animated experience, which is voiced by the original actors, is slated to land on PC VR and Oculus mobile headsets soon.

Update (May 2nd, 2019): The BBC says that Doctor Who: The Runaway is slated to arrive ‘soon’ on Oculus Rift and HTC Vive as a real-time rendered experience. A 360 version will also be made available on Oculus Go and Samsung Gear VR.

There’s no firm launch date  yet, but we’ll keep you posted once the BBC releases word.

Update (April 15th, 2019): The BBC have released a new trailer for Doctor Who: The Runaway which gives us a great first peek at the look an feel of the upcoming experience (see embedded video above). It looks to be a polished experience and that intriguing art style looks great in motion. We’ve also got more information on what the experience involves – courtesy of the latest press release:

“You’ve been in a collision. You wake inside the TARDIS. The Doctor introduces you to the person, or thing, you collided with. He’s a strange and magnificent ball of living energy called Volta. Part surly teenager, part bomb, Volta is very unstable. In fact, he’s primed to explode. Big time. Unless he can be returned to his home planet, sharpish. The problem is, a squad of galactic busybodies has other plans for Volta. Bad ones. Drawn into a frantic chase, you become the Doctor’s unlikely assistant as she races against time to get Volta home to his parents. Armed with a sonic screwdriver, it is down to you to help the Doctor as she faces the forces of evil, and teenage angst, in this animated 13-minute VR adventure from the team behind Doctor Who Series 11.”

The full experience is to receive its inaugural showing at next week’s Tribeca Film Festival, taking place in New York from Friday April 26th.

The original article covering the announcement continues below.

Dubbed Doctor Who: The Runaway, fans will get a chance to step into the TARDIS and join the Thirteenth Doctor (played by Jodie Whittaker) in virtual reality.

According to a press releasethe experience is said to last 12 minutes, and will be available on “selected VR headsets in the coming months.” Just which headsets the experience will launch on is still unclear (see update).

The animated VR experience was created by the BBC and Passion Animation Studios, with Whittaker reprising her role as ‘The Doctor’.

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Passion Animation was most notably behind the Gorillaz VR music video ‘Saturn Barnz (Spirit House)’ and the 2D theatrical cut of Google Spotlight Stories’ award-winning VR short Pearl.

“Our team at the BBC VR Hub has been creating new experiences with the goal of helping to usher virtual reality into the mainstream, and Doctor Who is exactly the sort of series that can help more people to try this new technology,” says Zillah Watson, head of BBC VR Hub. “The show has been pushing boundaries for over 55 years, and VR enables Doctor Who to explore a whole new dimension of storytelling.”

Doctor Who: The Runaway is said to include new original music from composer Segun Akinola, the mind behind much of music featured in the show’s eleventh season. The 12-minute experience was written by Victoria Asare-Archer and directed by Mathias Chelebourg, whose previous VR films include Alice, the Virtual Reality Play, and The Real Thing VR.

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  • Proof XR Lab

    BBC have put out some great VR content over the past two years, look forward to checking out Doctor Who.

  • Alexisms

    The BBC are currently complaining that if the free licence still applies for those 75 (i think) ana above then they’ll have to start cutting back on programmes. If they weren’t doing super niche (and vr is very niche, in the scale of things barely anyone has a headset) stuff like this then maybe they could just concentrate on what they were formed to do in the first place.

    • gothicvillas

      BBC should drop news as such, fake af. They make nice documentaries that’s it.

      • Alexisms

        Unlike certain other countries our news has to be proveable with facts. Of course when they employ people to speculate on the events that’s another matter but it’s funny how both left & right claim bias. So the beeb must be doing something right.

    • Proof XR Lab

      “The Turning Forest” (Daydream) has had between 50,000-100,000 downloads. Considering what a small user base Daydream has, its probable BBC have seen good engagement from the public with their VR apps.

      As a BBC license payer, i’m happy to see diverse output including VR.

      • Alexisms

        So that’s got to 0.15% of the population at most. Utterly stupid idea.

        • ale bro

          I bet 90% of the downloads are from outside the UK

          • Alexisms

            Good point, even less point doing it. They seem to just want to tick as many boxes as possible without thinking what their majority audience wants.

  • NikoKun

    Cool, I’ll have to check it out.

  • ale bro

    Let’s face it – this will be a Daydream exclusive. Does the BBC do anything else?

    Rift, Gear VR, and Daydream have a 13+ age rating, so it’s a bit strange making content for children when the HMD manufacturers don’t recommend it.

    • Monkey

      You’re gonna piss off a lot of people, implying Dr Who is just for children ;)

      Also, the ratings are just because the companies don’t want any chance of being sued in the future.
      The experts (that I have read about) generally agree that they shouldn’t be any more damaging to kids eyes than reading books, or using a smartphone.

      • ale bro

        I mentioned that Doctor Who is for kids on reddit once and got like a million downvotes. I guess teenagers don’t like being called kids haha

  • superdonkey

    the bbc is a hive of far-left champagne socialist who bully the british public with their crap tv license. they cant do anything without saturating it with political correctness and a sickly self righteousness.

    they should stay away from vr as they contaminate it.

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      • WyrdestGeek

        If you actually made the money you claim, you wouldn’t have to spew spam.

    • NooYawker

      The BBC is awesome, their news loverall its fair and balanced. They don’t bully anyone. Rupert Murdoch’s media in the UK are the ones who bully the government officials, it should be illegal what he does.

    • CHRIS

      read both far left and far right and you can then see the truth. just one type of media is so one sided.

  • ale bro

    strange that the BBC don’t make it available in the UK – UK citizens are the ones who paid for it!

    Is it Daydream only?

  • NooYawker

    “previous VR films include Alice, the Virtual Reality Play, and The Real Thing VR.”

    Why haven’t I heard of any of these?? Are they available for viewing?

  • JesuSaveSouls

    Jesus is my Lord and Savior!

    • oompah


  • RockstarRepublic

    That is not Doctor Who.

  • Andy Gates

    Looks fun, hope it comes out for Quest too :)

  • Chris

    It looks good. Hopefully it comes out for Windows Mixed Reality headsets!