The future of Virt-U and virtual reality gaming
Daniel Doll-Steinberg from Virt-U shares what he sees as the future for virtual reality gaming and blockchain technology at Blockchain Week in London
Interview from Blockchain Week London. 23rd January 2018.
Read the transcript of another segment of the conversation with Daniel Doll-Steinberg:
What's the next big thing for Virt-U?
We're developing it already. We have a team of almost 15 people and we're developing it. But we're very focused on delivering what we need to deliver in the short term. We'll have some platforms out in the summer of 2018, but the core platform that will do everything that we're expecting it to do will be in 2019.
And can you tell me about the token[VRT]?
It's used for the transfer and registration of assets within the platform. What we see happening is people will be able to create wealth. At the moment when you create wealth in a game it stays in the game. It's one-way; it's osmotic. You send something in – it doesn't come out.
With this solution you're able to create assets and value in a virtual world and extract the value back into the token. Once you've got it in the token you can you can put it into another virtual world. So you can start by playing in Camelot and then decide: "I don't like that and I want to live in a high-density world. I've got some tokens that I can apply".
Or you can exit and take [the tokens] to fiat currency and fund a lifestyle. What I see happening is that very soon after the platform's release you would get people in low-income countries being able to earn a living through this and then eventually you'll be able to get high-income families.
We're already talking to someone who wants to take us up to Manchester. Having told them what we do, they're quite keen to start educating people on how they might work to become a professional in the virtual world, rather than a professional in the real world. And that's the really exciting part of this business.
You were talking about the kinds of people that might come to you. Who's your customer?
We have two types of customers. The first customers are gamers, game developers – game developers who are building games that want to use our technology to monetize and commercialise their product. And the second is the player – the player that works within the game who needs the tokens to operate within those games. But our foremost customer who would use the technology is the developer.
But [when I say] the people that would use the tokens are the other game players, I say game players quite widely. I mean it could be anybody. I could be an architect and I just decided I want to be an architect in a virtual world. That's in our view a gamer in this because it's not a real world it's a game world, but it still emulates the real world.
You're talking about a lot of things that we would see as real-world skills and real-world jobs. How transferrable do you think those kinds of skills are? I mean you're talking about an architect. Is it realistic that a conventional architect who's struggling to find work now might be able to transition to the system and become an architect in virtual worlds?
Yes, absolutely. When the first games [were developed], you would have a flight simulator. And if someone shot at the plane it would blow up and it would fall out of the sky, and that was it. My co-founder actually developed his company and created a damage engine for aircraft which most people use now. That damage engine worked out that, if a bullet hit it, this is the damage it would cause to the aircraft. And it became real. Once that happened, flight simulators became more realistic.
You have that with all games. You're going to have physics engines in games. And in the old days if you people were playing game and you hit a box, the box wouldn't move. And you would just sort of stand there, running. Now you shoot a box or you run into a box and it actually obeys the laws of physics and moves.
The same thing is happening in this you know. The virtual worlds and the MMOs that we've got at the moment obey some sort of physics. As people develop more and more engines that emulate the real world, the virtual worlds will emulate the real world.
You can't just build a house. You will need to design a house, so you will have to understand the engineering and the architecture behind the house. And if that world was a Camelot world, as I mentioned before, then you could only use material that was available to them in those days. And you could only use the skills and machinery that would build that house. You couldn't build a sort of eye and strut substructure and a limestone fascia. You'd have to build it the way they did, if you were in a high-density world.
Maybe building in steel's not the right way to go because it can't accommodate the stresses and strains. Or if it were an underwater world, you'd have to use materials suitable to that.
Yes, I see that absolutely. I see it more exciting actually. You'll have people that actually want to specialise in this because it's the new frontier and the new frontier is more exciting than the existing frontier. That's why humans do new things.
So do you have competitors that you know of who are trying to do some of the digital things?
No, there's no one trying to do what we're trying to do, that we know. I mean who knows what's under the radar but there's no one trying to do this. I think it goes back to my early premise, which is if you have people from the industry, and you have people that know how to build this technology, then you're going to build something that's right for the industry.
And you know this is a solution for the industry. And it's needed. In fact all the directors that have joined us have joined us not because they see this is a new company, they see this as solving a need that they've seen in the current iteration of gaming. We'll be able to solve it, and that's something worthwhile doing.