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Free roaming, multiplayer VR Zero Latency is coming to the US

It's the VR zombie apocalypse, and it's coming to a city near you. If you live in Florida.

The VR headset and custom Alienware computer backpack that make Zero Latency possible.
Bennet Ring/CNET

Zero Latency is coming to the US, and it's bringing with it one of the most immersive VR experiences available today. The multiplayer VR experience has partnered with the US-based Main Event Entertainment to open a Zero Latency site in Orlando, Florida. It'll be the world's fourth Zero Latency site, and the first to land stateside.

The game will debut at the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions (IAAPA) Expo in Florida in November 2016, followed by becoming a permanent fixture at Main Event Entertainment's new centre.

The original Zero Latency opened in mid-2015, bringing an intense free-roaming, zombie-blasting multiplayer VR experience to an unassuming warehouse space in Melbourne, Australia.

Using custom hardware like backpack PCs and headsets and rifles modified with PlayStation Move motion trackers, a group of players can enter the same virtual space, move around in real life and shoot some zombies. The motion tracking is because it all takes place in a converted warehouse space, tracking your movements in real life as you blow apart virtual enemies.

CNET previously covered the Melbourne experience, with Bennett Ring calling it "the best virtual reality experience I have ever had. And I have tried them all since Dactyl Nightmare almost made me puke back in 1991."

Zero Latency has since opened sites around the world in Tokyo, Japan and Madrid, Spain. The original Melbourne site has had over 14,000 players run through the game since it opened, and the Tokyo Zero Latency has already broken 40,000 players.

With virtual reality still in its nascence, there's already a split between at-home use and more arcade-style experiences like Zero Latency. Given the prohibitive cost and hardware demands of VR, the destination experience could secure an early foothold as the definitive VR experience -- or at least the best way to make good on the promise of fully immersive virtual worlds.