Firefox Reality Top Picks - Bringing You New Virtual Reality Experiences Weekly
So you bought yourself a fancy VR headset, you’ve played all the zombie-dragon-laser-kitten-battle games (we have too!) and now you’re wondering… what else is there? Where can I find other cool stuff to explore while I have this headset strapped to my face? We felt the same way, so we built Firefox Reality to help you in your quest for the most interesting, groundbreaking and entertaining virtual reality content on the Web.
The real promise of VR is the ability to immerse yourself into countless other places and perspectives - both real and imaginary - and to experience things you’ve never done before. Our Top Picks page is a great place to start exploring, with fresh recommendations coming weekly so you always have new content to check out. Of course, if you want to explore on your own, you can use Firefox Reality for that too.
Firefox Reality Top Picks is the start of what we hope will evolve into a thriving and sustainable ecosystem connecting creators, VR content, and audience.
How Do We Pick Our “Top Picks”?
Unlike browsers that recommend content by mining your data and using AI, the content featured in the Firefox Reality Top Picks menu is curated by real humans. We build relationships with creator communities and scour the Web seeking the best experiences we can find from around the world. We keep our finger firmly on the pulse of what’s hottest, freshest and most engaging in the rapidly changing world of emerging tech content.
We seek out creators where they tend to congregate: at conferences, festivals, meetups and hackathons, on LinkedIn and in creator / developer Facebook and Reddit groups, and through artist networks. We also dig around the vast reaches of the Web and spend countless hours in headset watching and evaluating virtual reality videos and interacting with experiences, discovering first-hand what we need to have warnings for (like motion sickness, phobias, strong language or potentially triggering subject matter), so that you know before you dive in what you’re going into.
There are certain things we’re looking for, such as the quality of the video, editing, use of animation or special effects, the presence or absence of major technical flaws, and whether “best practices” for shooting and editing 360 video or building an interactive experience have been followed. If best practices aren’t followed, we like to see they’re being broken for a reason. We’re excited by new ways of storytelling, interesting ways to explore familiar places and concepts, simple-but-effective interactive games and experiences that can be played by anyone right over the Web.
Along with technical quality, we’re interested in the creative aspects of the work - the concept, the story, the theme, the characters and so on. But when evaluating immersive content, there’s another layer - how the creator has made use of immersivity and/or interactivity. Does this feel like a story or experience that was specifically created for 360 space? Are the creators using traditional aspects of storytelling/journalism/art/music to do something new or different? Did the concept have to be told in 360 space or require interactivity to be effective?
For example: The French piece Bebe Moche, featured currently in 360 Perspectives, tackles traditional physical slapstick comedy in 360 space. The French comedy troupe behind Bebe Moche have a whole series of short comedic “sketch” videos like this, and we’ll be showcasing them in Top Picks menu. Featuring the same cast and exploring physical comedy, they are a simple, effective experiments in physical storytelling that transcends verbal language. Perhaps equally important, it’s the kind of 360 video project that anyone could tackle with a decent 360 camera and video editing software.
Both content creators and audience are a key part of our journey as we work to make Firefox Reality a must-have tool for discovering, experiencing and sharing virtual reality content. If you are a creator interested in making a 360 video or interactive experience, or you want to know if the work you’re already making is WebXR-compatible, make sure to check out our Immersive Media Content Guide; it’s a great starting point for understanding more about how to make and share your own work.
If you have or know of an amazing 360 video or interactive experience you’d like our team to consider featuring on Firefox Reality Top Picks, please submit it to us here.
Firefox Reality 5 is available now. You can see our most recent release notes here. Go and get it!
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