Mixed reality startup Magic Leap announced today that its raised an additional $461 million in funding, provided by The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia. This additional funding might be used to incentivize developers to build specifically for its new platform, with the Creator Portal SDK slated to be available in 2018. As reported by TechCrunch, the Saudi Arabian fund raised $400 million of the investment, with Magic Leap adding that “new investors” made up the remaining amount. The total Series D funding now totals to $963 million, Magic Leap says. Magic Leap secured $502 million in funding last year from Singapore-based investor Temasek, meaning the company has now raised around $2.3 billion. The company revealed its Magic Leap One headset back in December, which is said to utilize digital lightfield technology to seamlessly blend virtual objects with the real world. No set release date … [Read more...] about Magic Leap raises $461 million in funding from Saudi Arabian investment arm
Mixed investment funds
Gree has rebranded and expanded its virtual reality fund as it gears up for a second round of investments. The 'GVR Fund' was launched back in April 2016 to help virtual and augmented reality developers find their feet. Gree initially only committed $12 million to the program, but eventually went on to sink $18.3 million into 17 companies, primarily based in North America. Now, the Japanese outfit wants to broaden the initiative to include more mixed and augmented reality projects. As such, it will now be known as the 'GFR Fund,' and will focus on investing in various early-stage virtual, augmented, and mixed reality startups. "We believe that virtual and augmented reality have the power to alter people's lives by completely changing the way of interaction between people and computer which has been trapped in small, square screens," reads the GFR Fund website. "We help talented entrepreneurs, who share … [Read more...] about Gree rebrands VR fund as focus shifts to mixed and augmented reality
Premature Evaluation is the weekly column in which we explore the wilds of early access. This week, Fraser’s filling the British countryside with railroads and smoke in train tycoon sim, Mashinky. Disaster! I’d barely begun my first foray into Mashinky’s magical world of locomotives when my very first attempt to manage a whopping two whole trains — carriages and all — ended in calamity and death. And also fire. My brand new steam engine had just left the depot near Leicester and was beginning its journey to Kirkcaldy when it rather unexpectedly collided with the only other train in the world. All that was left was a smoking, smouldering wreck. That’s what signals are for, I realised too late. Mashinky’s brief tutorial ends after you set up your first passenger line, before the need for signals even arises, so I was a wee bit unprepared for catastrophe. Signals have haunted me ever since. They’re everywhere. Crossings and junctions and … [Read more...] about Premature Evaluation: Mashinky
The game industry of 2022 is big, messy and hard to find. Those who define it might be children. They could be solo developers on just enough funding to scrimp by for the next project. They could be retirees, artists or marginalized children in a war-torn country. They may create works of genius that go undiscovered until long after their death. Following up on Polygon’s recent fifth anniversary, we decided to ask a range of experts in the game industry the same question: What will things look like five years from now? While some cited practical predictions, like the rise of virtual reality, most centered around the structures that enable games to be made in the first place. And while many people see things improving, several also sounded warning bells about what the industry may be like and who may be in charge of it. The future isn’t necessarily what you think While many developers imagine a future where the game industry is overrun with new and exciting technology, many … [Read more...] about What will the game industry look like in five years?
The first time Taylor Kurosaki and Bob Rafei saw a running PlayStation, they were in a Las Vegas hotel room. It was the 1995 Consumer Electronics Show. They, along with the company they worked for, Naughty Dog, were being given a behind-closed-doors look at Sony's first foray into the game console industry. When they describe the event now, they use words like "inspiring" and "enthralled" and phrases like "blown away." They didn't know it at the time, but the members of Naughty Dog in that room — Kurosaki, Rafei and co-founders Jason Rubin and Andy Gavin — were looking at the system that would host the team's next game: Crash Bandicoot. They were seeing the console their company would eventually create the unofficial mascot for — the console they would develop Naughty Dog's first smash hit for. It was Kurosaki and Rafei's second day with the company. Naughty Dog released Crash Bandicoot for Sony's original PlayStation in September 1996. In it, the team took an old … [Read more...] about Crash Bandicoot: An oral history