GDC, hosted later this month in San Francisco, has long been an important event for Oculus. This year the company says they’re bringing brand new VR demos to the show and will host a session exploring the company’s plans for 2018.

GDC 2018 is a little more than one week away; Oculus is planning a big presence at the show this year, and, in a post to the company’s blog, says they’ll be bringing “never-before-seen demos” to the event. We expect this means we’ll see the latest builds of previously announced games, but there’s a good chance some brand new titles will be revealed as well. Oculus’ 6,000 square foot booth is among the largest in the event’s South Hall.

There’s no official word thus far on which games will be shown, but we expect to see updates on in-development titles like Marvel Powers United VR. It’s hard to say whether or not we’ll see anything new from hotly anticipated (but still unseen) titles like Echo Combat and the unnamed Oculus Studios title coming from Titanfall developer Respawn Entertainment, but we’ll certainly have our fingers crossed. Last week, Oculus’ VP of Content, Jason Rubin, tweeted that he is “especially excited to extend [Oculus’] content lead this year…”

In addition to new game demos at the company’s booth, Oculus is planning a sponsored session during the event, titled ‘Inside Oculus 2018‘, which promises to provide insight on plans for their VR ecosystem in 2018:

VR is about to take another leap forward in 2018, and Oculus continues to break new ground bringing cutting-edge hardware, software, and content to people around the world. Join for an inside look at what’s coming across the Oculus ecosystem in 2018, from Rift, mobile and new standalone devices to the advancements, services, and tools helping developers define the next wave of immersive gaming.

Judging by the roster of senior Oculus members, it ought to be a wide ranging session:

  • Ross O’Dwyer – Director of Engineering
  • Jason Rubin – VP Content, Oculus
  • Chris Pruett – Head of Development Engineering, Mobile
  • Ruth Bram – Producer, Oculus Studios

Be advised, GDC is a developer focused event, so while we’re expecting to hear exciting things from Oculus’ session, it’s likely to be largely relevant to VR developers.

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Oculus also plans to host another sponsored session at GDC, ‘Embodying Identity through Immersive Design‘, which brings together Oculus Studios’ own Ruth Bram with external VR developers from Sanzaru, Harmonix, and Turtle Rock Studios, to explore the challenges of designing VR games where players don’t just play as a character, they become the character.

VR has introduced an entirely new design paradigm where players don’t just connect with protagonists, they embody them. In turn, game designers now have a vastly expressive sandbox where sound, environments, and characters are defined by their own boundless creativity. VR’s physicality demands diverse perspectives to ensure immersive worlds resonate with the unique individuals experiencing them–it’s complex. Leaders behind top Oculus Studios Gear VR and Rift titles will discuss best practices, common pitfalls, and the key principles to winning immersive design, the next frontier for game creation.

Next week the company says they’ll share details on their plans for a new “learning theater” for developers at GDC which will “[feature] Oculus engineers and developers delivering insights, best practices, and practical advice for VR development.”

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Ben is the world's most senior professional analyst solely dedicated to the XR industry, having founded Road to VR in 2011—a year before the Oculus Kickstarter sparked a resurgence that led to the modern XR landscape. He has authored more than 3,000 articles chronicling the evolution of the XR industry over more than a decade. With that unique perspective, Ben has been consistently recognized as one of the most influential voices in XR, giving keynotes and joining panel and podcast discussions at key industry events. He is a self-described "journalist and analyst, not evangelist."
  • Mostly I would like to hear they have plans for a new Rift model. But more native VR games are always welcome. An Oculus VR glove would be a step up from the touch controllers. New headset with improved ppd and fov too. And while they are at it, a modular tracking solution and rechargeable wireless dock for the HMD.

    • SomeGuyorAnother

      I wouldn’t expect any announcement on a new Rift model, as they’d be most likely to hold that back ’til OC5 (close to the holidays, good time to get hype going to combat competitor sales through “I’d rather wait” tactics since they’ve already said they won’t release one in 2018). We’re a ways off from VR gloves as a standard, which Oculus focuses on, due to current tech limits and price on what’s currently being developed.

      I would expect, however, a bit more info regarding the Santa Cruz model.

    • daveinpublic

      It’s more of a software conference.

  • airball

    Where has the Oculus Go gone?

    • Irene

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    • I think that Oculus (with GO) and Vive (with Pro) are just waiting for that movie

  • I’ve heard that at GDC maybe Oculus will demo the Santa Cruz prototype