Oculus CEO envisions billion-person MMO

Adding a handful of zeroes to your bank account overnight can inspire lofty goals, such as Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe's plot to create a virtual world populated by over a billion real people.

"This is going to be an MMO where we want to put a billion people in VR," Iribe told an audience at the recent TechCrunch Disrupt conference. Iribe admits that this project is a long ways off (and may not be a single world, so much as a number of disparate, connected worlds forming a virtual metaverse), but claims that Facebook's substantial monetary resources grants Oculus VR the freedom to tackle big ideas. Iribe believes Oculus wouldn't have the same opportunities if it has joined forces with a gaming developer or even one of the major console manufacturers.

"Do you want to build a platform that has a billion users on it, or only 10, 20, or 50 million?" Iribe added, underlining the massive reach of Facebook.

While Iribe's dream of a billion-person MMO is a ways off, Oculus is taking the first steps toward that goal by improving virtual conversations. Perfectly photorealistic faces are still a ways off, but Iribe remains confident in his team's ability to escape the uncanny valley. "[I]f you let go, you can have a real conversation with a person," Iribe said. "That's the holy grail we're trying to get to."
[Image: Facebook]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.