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Facebook's Oculus acquires studio BigBox VR for multiplayer games

The Population: One battle royale game will still be available for other VR headsets besides Facebook's Oculus products.

Stephen Shankland Former Principal Writer
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BigBox VR makes the Population: One VR battle royale game.

BigBox VR

Oculus, Facebook's virtual reality headset maker, has acquired game studio BigBox VR, the company said Friday.

"One of the most popular social experiences in VR has proven to be Population: One, the breakout battle royale from BigBox VR. Today, I'm honored to share that BigBox VR is joining Facebook," said Mike Verdu, Facebook Reality Labs' vice president of content, in a blog post Friday.

VR for years has been held out as a major new computing platform, one reason Facebook acquired Oculus for $2 billion in 2014. But VR hasn't caught on among mainstream buyers, and a shortage of compelling things to do with VR headsets is one reason why.

In Population: One, groups of up to 24 players navigate through and fight in a 3D realm. Facebook won't cancel Population: One versions that run on other VR headsets.

Facebook promised to preserve Bigbox VR's culture and approach. "We are committed to maintaining BigBox VR's nimble, iterative, creative culture, along with its passion for fostering Pop: One's engaged community," Verdu said.