Oculus announced at their pre-E3 ‘Step into the Rift’ event that they would be committing more than $10 million to accelerate indie VR developers. The investment fund signifies the largest amount of money ever publicly earmarked by Oculus for third-party content development.
On Thursday, Oculus’ Head Developer of Strategy, Anna Sweet, made the announcement at the grand unveiling of the consumer version of the Rift, company’s first consumer-ready VR headset, saying that they would be investing more than $10 million into “innovative, one of a kind, independent games.”
The investment fund is a first for Oculus, with the VR headset manufacturer usually supporting devs through game development contests.
The company’s first Oculus Game Jam back in 2013 offered up $50,000 of prizes in effort to help seed content creation for the Oculus DK1, the first dev kit that came from the company’s landmark Kickstarter success.
The company’s second dev contest awarded over $1 million to developers in the Mobile VR Jam earlier this month, targeting the Samsung Gear VR platform. Platinum level winners of the Jam alone took home between $100,000 – $200,000 in cash prizes.
The new investment fund is a big step for Oculus, and will likely help fill out the upcoming ‘Oculus Home’ application with more content designed specifically for the Rift. It’s unclear when Oculus will begin vetting hopeful developers, or whether they will be obligated to publish exclusively with Oculus. It also isn’t clear how the company will go about doling out the cash, but we imagine that a good start would be to prototype an impressive VR experience for the Rift.