‘Screen-saving’ relaxation title Screensavers VR seeks to bring virtual explorers back to the 90’s, an era littered with CRT monitors known for their lackluster mitigation against pixel burn-in. Screensavers were a necessary part of keeping monitors working properly, and some of the most popular screensavers of the time will soon be fully explorable in VR when Screensavers VR arrives on Steam (for all major PC headsets) on October 16th.
Developer FLOAT LAND called Screensavers VR a “part-parody, part-tribute to the emerging pop-tech aesthetic of the 90’s” in a recent press statement. Further, it appears that the title is not simply a 3D realization of a few retro screensaver environments; instead, the developer boasts unique VR interactions including object manipulation and re-scaling.
The experience’s Steam page lists the following features:
- Plunge your body into five screensavers inspired by the classics, and experience their evolution.
- Physically manipulate digital worlds! Explore each micro-universe through wild parameters and VR-only effects like scale.
- Kick back in the semi-authentic 90’s office-den simulation and read original writing about the screensaver phenomenon.
- Warp through stars like never before! Experience and endless starfield in HD!
- Can you reach the end of M A Z E?
- Pipes are so real, you’ll swear you hit your head.
The Screensavers VR developer promises to introduce multiple comfort options and a “laying down mode” to the title soon after launch. Future post-launch content may include VR renditions of modern screensavers “contributed by contemporary artist and animator luminaries.”
Screensavers VR is slated to arrive on October 16th, priced at $5. It will be available on Steam for Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Valve Index, and Windows MR owners. The title is also promised to become available on Oculus, Viveport, Itch.io, and Google Play, though there are no estimated release dates for those versions at this time.
“The project was first demoed at Glitch City’s Cyber Cafe art show at LA’s iconic Cinefamily in 2014,” the developer continued in the press statement. “After a few year hiatus, the FLOAT team (Irrational Exuberance, Liminal Realities) launched a new version of the project at IndieCade’s E3 booth in 2018, receiving favorable press coverage with BBC News, Hollywood Reporter, and Venture Beat.”
Screensavers VR is evidently part of a ‘multi-media’ experience accompanying transmedia “essays, prose, and flash fiction pertaining to screensavers, generative animation, and how we interact with media,” the developers say. The latter are all planned to be compiled and published—in print—in fall 2020 by publishing house Not a Cult.