Earlier this week, I found myself in an intense gaming session, taking cover in a tree and trying to secure last-minute points in a chaotic free-for-all brawl. This thrilling game was “Super Rumble,” a new first-person shooter developed by Ouro Interactive, Meta’s newly established in-house studio. The game is part of Meta’s efforts to revitalize their social VR platform, Horizon Worlds, which is launching today.
“Super Rumble” stands out from other VR games due to its groundbreaking features. It utilizes technical advancements that greatly enhance the visual and immersive aspects of the gameplay. Furthermore, it is set to become one of the first games to undergo beta-testing when Horizon Worlds is introduced to mobile devices in the near future.
This release marks a significant step in the platform’s reboot. Horizon Worlds faced challenges in the past, with declining user engagement and various issues that were addressed by Vishal Shah, Meta’s metaverse VP, in internal memos that were leaked. However, the team has been dedicated to making improvements over the last year, including expanding the platform’s capabilities to accommodate more complex games and worlds, as well as allowing developers to import objects and assets built with third-party tools.
“Super Rumble” sets a new standard for visual quality, interactivity, and fun in Horizon, boasting imported objects, assets, and textures that were not possible before. The game also utilizes TypeScript, a more dynamic scripting language, enabling a more reactive environment. Moreover, it introduces superpowers, quests, and rewards to enhance replayability.
Meta plans to boost the platform’s content with the help of Ouro Interactive and select partners, ensuring an array of compelling content for users upon launch. While advanced creator tools and object importing capabilities will eventually be made widely available, the immediate focus is on growing the platform’s audience through quality content.
Another crucial milestone for Horizon Worlds is the forthcoming mobile app. The team worked extensively on rebuilding the app to create a mobile-native experience. This app launch is expected to attract a significant number of users who might not have access to VR headsets.
Furthermore, Meta is exploring generative AI tools to aid creators in developing new worlds and content, with an eye towards metaverse interoperability. This includes the potential for users to transfer their avatars and items between platforms or travel with friends to other metaverse destinations.
While the metaverse hype might have subsided, Meta remains dedicated to the long-term vision of creating a thriving metaverse. Mark Zuckerberg emphasized this commitment, and Vishal Shah sees the launch of “Super Rumble” and the underlying technology as a significant step in that direction, setting a new standard for the Horizon experience. The team acknowledges that this journey is just beginning and is focused on continuously resetting the bar for what the platform can achieve.