Rec Room Metaverse: How To Make It And What Did Mark Zukerberg Said?

During the pandemic, the social gaming platform, which began in virtual reality, has seen significant expansion on mobile devices, consoles, and other media. It is now worth $3.5 billion, according to market estimates.

One of the most popular virtual reality applications has just received a significant boost in its quest to become one of the most prominent players in the following technological trend, the metaverse.

Rec Room, a Seattle-based social game business formed by former Microsoft employees who worked on the company's early HoloLens initiatives, announced Monday that it had raised $145 million in venture capital.

As a result, it has a market capitalization of $3.5 billion, which is higher than the approximately $3 billion Facebook agreed to pay for virtual reality startup Oculus in 2014.

Funding for Rec Room, headed by Coatue Management and including current investors Sequoia Capital, Index Ventures, and Madrona Venture Group, would be used to expand the company's operations and hire additional personnel.

CEO Nick Fajt

Rec Room's CEO, Nick Fajt, who co-founded the company in 2016, claimed the company had experienced an increase in users as a result of the pandemic, as individuals signed on to play activities like paintball and laser tag, as well as race in-vehicle rallies while chatting with their fellow gamers.

  • The company would not disclose how many individuals log into its platform each month, but it did indicate that the number had increased by more than 450 percent in November compared to the previous month.
  • Mr. Fajt stated that some of the company's growth had been attributed to the company's apps being made available for iPhones in 2019 and Android phones this summer.
  • User-generated rooms for gaming and discussion were also mentioned, with more than 12 million having been established, according to him. According to Fajt, “it all boils down to delivering a solid community.”
  • However, the company will encounter stiff competition as it seeks to expand. There have been several social-focused apps that have found popularity in COVID-19's permanent isolation. This is the newest.

Rec Room Metaverse

During the outbreak, other apps, such as the world-building games Minecraft and Roblox and the online war game Fortnite, served as safe havens for people to gather.

Early in the epidemic, gaming network traffic spiked and has continued to rise.

A lot of time is also spent playing these games. There were an average of 31.1 million individuals using Roblox every day when the firm went public last year, an increase of more than 80% from the same period in 2019.

After a year, Roblox reported a new high of 47.3 million users in November.

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The IT sector has coined the metaverse as a catchphrase for this new wave of digital environments where individuals can connect.

According to Epic Games, the game has been used to host concerts, celebrity meetups, and even movie evenings, in addition to being a popular fighting game.

Executives from companies such as Microsoft, Match, Coinbase, and even the entertainment behemoth Disney have talked about how they are creating their metaverses. This concept has also caught on with other businesses.

Mark Zuckerberg, a Co-founder of Facebook

Founder Mark Zuckerberg was so enamored with the metaverse concept that he renamed Facebook Meta in October.

  • It's “in our DNA” to build technology that connects people, “exactly the way social networking was when we got started,” he remarked back in 2012.
  • During Meta's Rift VR headsets' introduction in 2016, virtual reality was at the zenith of popularity.
  • In the meantime, major corporations such as Sony, Google; HTC; and Microsoft were also discussing their plans for virtual reality.
  • People's enthusiasm for virtual reality (VR) as the next big thing diminished because sales didn't skyrocket like smartphones after the launch of Apple's iPhone.
  • This has all begun to change due to the pandemic, which has compelled us to rely on technology.
  • New York University Stern School of Business professor Joost van Dreunen said he's become less suspicious about social worlds after seeing people adjust to social separation and isolation by hosting funerals on Zoom and children's birthday parties in Roblox.

Rec Room Metaverse

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Creating the Metaverse

Rec Room sees this as a significant opportunity and a warning from some of the industry's most prominent personalities.

  • Meta is already working on Horizon Worlds, a free virtual environment where users may hang out and play games.
  • Unlike Horizon, Fajt's startup isn't connected to Meta's platform. Instead, it's free on Android, iPhone, PC, PlayStation, Xbox, and VR.
  • It also doesn't rely on advertising. Instead of making money by selling virtual things like character skins.
  • So far, so good. Console and VR users spend almost two hours in Rec Room, whereas smartphone users spend an hour.
  • Last year, Roblox revealed that its users spend an average of 2.6 hours in the game.
  • “If you go to Rec Room, you stay some time,” Fajt added.
  • Like its name, Rec Room aims to stand out in the crowd. The corporation provided training on utilizing its tools to mute or even vote out people causing trouble.
  • Rec Room tests automated voice moderation, combining community reports, human moderators, and automated tools.
  • Preventive measures include moderating more heavily when a user initially joins to establish a tone.
  • It's also not suitable for firms like Meta, Twitter, YouTube, and others dealing with mass harassment campaigns, misinformation, and other hazardous activity.
  • It's still hard labor. According to Frances Haugen, using Rec Room on the Oculus Quest headset, a Facebook employee complained about a chanting racial slur.
  • A former Facebook employee who shared redacted internal communications with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Congress, and a group of news organizations and reporters, including CNET reporter Queenie Wong.
  • Fajt stated his team had banned someone using the same racial insult around the same time.
  • Rec Room also wants to strengthen its moderation methods to ban violators as it multiplies.
  • “We didn't state Rec Room is a free-for-all,” he said. “We have a code of conduct and expectations for content.”

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Those initiatives, Fajt hopes, will help build experiences that people will want to return to. “It's a major issue. Our next step will be much more than a game.”