VR’s Best (or possibly worst) April Fool’s Day Jokes This Year


VR’s Best (or possibly worst) April Fool’s Day Jokes This Year

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April Fool’s Day is more than just a time to pull harmless pranks. It’s also about putting on your ‘skeptic hat’ and really asking whether you can believe your eyes, as trusted companies and key figures in XR dropped a few doozies yesterday that are so great they’re terrible.

‘Virtual Boy Pro’ MR Headset

Nintendo actually teamed up with IGN to poke some serious fun at the biggest XR companies out there—but also apparently anyone who wanted the Japanese gaming giant to poke their heads back into the medium since it last released its Nintendo Labo VR kit in 2019, which brought not only a few fun VR mini-games to Switch, but also VR support for a number of Switch titles.

While the so-called ‘Virtual Boy Pro’ has seemingly better ergonomics than its 1995-era namesake, it still looks pretty dang front-heavy. Just the same, here’s the main copy from the fake reveal video, seen above:

Virtual Boy Pro turns the world around you into a new level from Nintendo’s most beloved video game properties. Super Mario: Home Run is an all new platforming adventure featuring everyone’s favorite plumber, but this time, he’ll be running, jumping and ground-pounding Goombas in your world. Virtual Boy Pro transforms any environment into an interactive level, allowing Mario and friends to interact seamlessly with your physical surroundings.

Nintendo and IGN promised Virtual Boy Pro players could also play augmented reality versions of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and The Legend of Zelda: Tears of the Kingdom, as well as fictional games Link’s Korok Catcher, Animal Crossing: Moving Day, and Luigi’s Mansion 4. 

Not only that, but Virtual Boy Pro was said to transform supported vacuum cleaner models by Dyson, Oreck, Shark or Bissell into Luigi’s Poltergust 3000, “creating a seamless integration between virtual ghost hunting and real-world housekeeping.”

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If it wasn’t obvious by now, Virtual Boy Pro also promised to actually let you drive while playing fictional game Mario Kart: Open Road, which would “transform your daily commute to work into a 200cc Grand Prix race down Rainbow Road.”

‘Walkabout Mini Golf’ Legs Update

Walkabout Mini Golf is one of the bigger VR success stories, as the game has found solid footing among fans, letting developers Mighty Coconut attract some high-profile partnerships over the years to really flush out its paid DLC courses to include everything from the original MYST map to a new Wallace & Gromit course coming soon.

But what is really missing from the hit indie putt-putt golf game? Why, legs of course!

The studio doesn’t lay it on too thick, as the linked blog post simply says “April Fools,” although you can’t help but wonder when the game that tasks you with walking about will include the game’s second most important limbs.

Virtual Desktop Developer Hired by Meta

Guy Godin, the developer of Virtual Desktop, has had a bit of a love-hate relationship with Meta over the years. While the highly-rated paid app has done very well on PC VR platforms as well as Quest, staying relevant as Meta ostensibly replicates a lot of your functionality has presented Godin with a constant battle to stay one step ahead of Quest’s baked-in functionality Air Link, which lets you stream PC VR games to Quest over Wi-Fi.

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When we heard he was making the move to Meta Reality Labs, it was basically like hearing Canada was dissolving its border with the US—and of course being polite enough not to ask for a star on the flag while they were at it.

Godin doesn’t mince words either. In a follow-up post, he promised he would also “make sure to take at least 6 months before adding 120hz support. I’ll also randomly remove or break features people use. Can’t wait!”

Pillow’s New Toilet Mode

Pillow is a mixed reality app from serial inventor and XR designer Lucas Rizzotto. The app is meant to be used laying down so you can do a host of relaxing things like transform your ceiling into an interactive night sky and unwind to rhythm-based breath-tracked meditations.

Rizzotto announced a new ‘toilet mod’ was coming to Pillow, which admittedly is the second most comfortable place in your home.

Not only does the fake update let you use Pillow in the toilet, but Rizzotto also teased the studio was announcing a new shower mode too, which would actually be pretty cool if the darn lenses didn’t fog up so much.

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Indie adventure RPG Dave the Diver (2023) isn’t a VR game, but developer MINTROCKET announced it was coming out with its own fake DLC which would include a VR love simulator based on Dave’s favorite anime idol, Leahs.

The fake Steam update says it even includes voiced lines in Korean, Japanese, English, Chinese, German, French, Vietnamese and Lithuanian.

What was your favorite April Fool’s joke this year in XR? Let us know in the comments below!

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