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Virtual Reality Apps

​You'll soon be able to ramble through an Oculus VR version of Minecraft

Microsoft's update of its smash-hit game will reach Facebook's virtual-reality headset in coming weeks.

Microsoft built a Minecraft​ roller coaster world that could be fun for VR thrill seekers.

Microsoft built a Minecraft roller coaster world that could be fun for VR thrill seekers.

Screenshot by Stephen Shankland/CNET

A virtual-reality version of Microsoft's megahit game Minecraft will arrive on Facebook's Oculus VR goggles "in the next few weeks," the company said Thursday.

The game, in which players roam around a blocky 3D world building shelters, manufacturing survival equipment and fending off monsters, is well suited to the immersive Oculus experience. There's a virtual world already on hand, and players used to having a stylized Minecraft body aren't likely to be put off by not being able to see their own real-world bodies.

Minecraft for Oculus could help ensure there are enough interesting things to do to justify the expense of VR headsets and the powerful computers needed to run them.

Microsoft announced the plan as part of an effort to coax people to upgrade to Windows 10, required to run the Oculus version of Minecraft. Windows 10 is a free upgrade through July 30 at 2:59 a.m. PT.

Microsoft has already talked about the Oculus version of Minecraft but has shone a brighter spotlight on Minecraft for its own Hololens augmented-reality (AR) glasses. That version uses the Hololens headset to embed elements of the virtual Minecraft world within the real world a player also sees.

The Oculus version of Minecraft, like the Pocket Edition that runs on phones and tablets and the Windows 10 version already available, uses a newer C++ version of the game that lacks some of the advanced features in the original Java-based version. Microsoft plans to beef up the new version though.