Friday, July 19, 2024

Google’s Apps May Not Be on Vision Pro, But Now Two of Its Classic VR Games Are

Google’s directly competing services aren’t on Vision Pro, but that doesn’t mean the company isn’t doing business on Apple’s headset altogether, as it has now brought two of its most influential VR games to Vision Pro.

Google’s XR studio Owlchemy Labs today launched Job Simulator (2016) and its sequel Vacation Simulator (2019) on Vision Pro, respectively priced at $20 and $30 on the App Store.

The tongue-in-cheek simulator games parody both the worlds of work and play as seen through the eyes of robots who have replaced all human jobs—and have taken human vacations too.

To boot, the franchise has been one of VR’s most successful to date, with both games going multi-platinum across all major VR headsets, and regularly showing up in the top most-popular VR game charts since their respective launches.

The Vision Pro releases of both games are in large part thanks to the studio’s early adoption of hand-tracking, as Apple’s headset doesn’t support motion controllers of any sort. Consequently, this has also allowed the studio to bring a hand-tracking mode to the Quest versions too.

“Owlchemy Labs has always been committed to pioneering hand tracking technology and putting our games on the most innovative platforms,” said Andrew Eiche, CEO at Owlchemy Labs. “Bringing Job Simulator and Vacation Simulator to Apple Vision Pro feels like the most natural manifestation of our goals. The fully immersive environments look stunning on Apple Vision Pro, and the games have been optimized for the hand- and eye-tracking capabilities of the platform.”

Acquired by Google in 2017, Owlchemy Labs is also known for the Emmy-nominated title Rick and Morty: Virtual Rick-ality (2017), and its latest VR game Cosmonious High (2022).

This technically makes for the first Google-owned apps to release on Vision Pro. At the time of this writing, notably missing is YouTube, Google Maps, Meet, Drive, and Photos. The company has said however a YouTube app for Vision Pro is on the map, although it’s not certain when that’s set to arrive.


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