What happens inside Tribeca's hit VR experience 'Jack'?
I'm Joan E.
And I'm Scott Stein.
We spent a lot of time at the Tribeca Film Festival in the last week and a half.
And it's kind of a rarified experience, getting to go through some of these V.R. installations, so we though we'd walk you through our experience, and one in particular.
Yeah, Jack, which was.
The wildest one that we did is basically Blaine's VR and immersive theater.
So it is kind of like using a VR headset at home but the cool thing about what you get to do at a lot of these festivals and spaces is it is a lot more like an art installation so you are free to move in this larger space and you wear the headset and you interact with actual actors.
I got suited into this VR backpack, and I put on the headset, and I didn't know what was gonna come next.
There is also an entertainment complex called The Void that does this with Star Wars and things like that.
The difference here is again life actors.
So I was put through a door, and the all of the sudden I'm in this cartoon House.
And as I'm walking around I don't have controllers, which is the other cool part.
It's using leap motion which is using sensing to track my hands without any control.
So I see a light as I walk past the dangling light it actually hits me in the hand.
So these are real objects.
I can reach out and grab the light.
I go to the tea pot.
There's a real tea pot.
And my frog mom is with a broom.
She pushes the broom, hits me in the foot with the real broom, tells me to go sell a radio.
And I don't know if I'm gonna do that.
I start to talk and realize I can say whatever I want and they're acting back with me and suddenly I'm in a play.
And then I had, when she left, and I had to go figure out what to do.
And all of a sudden this Airship arrives on a balcony and I go, should I go walk out there?
Sure, and I'm able to walk anywhere.
And I step out onto the balcony with wind and this bird creature-trader.
Steampunk bird merchant.
Yeah, steampunk bird merchant wants something to buy and I don't know what.
So I try to Fake her out by grabbing something else like a tea pot she's no that's not interesting so finally I take the radio and she grabs it from from me and I'm like pulling with a real radio over the balcony and she takes it and I lose the negotiation and I get handed a giant magic bean and mom comes back and gets really upset and I'm just like.
Becoming Jack at this point.
It was the best bean that they had.
The best bean that they had?
And then a beanstalk rises but at this point, I thought wow, I'm walking around.
I'm sitting on the bed, I'm doing these things, I know I'm in a thing that almost feels like a video game.
But the fact that I can say whatever I want Starts to put me in the role.
And you enter it too.
I think we actually had a slightly different experience.
Naturally, by the nature of their being, live actors and you're responding to them and them responding to you, everybody is experience is gonna be a little bit different.
The story definitely follows a very, there are definitely points that all follow the same arc like I also
My frog mom was also sweeping a broom but when I first interacted with her it was me taking initiative touching her before she reached me so I reached out to touch her and kind of surprised myself when I reached out to touch her and I didn't just bat away air.
It was an actual human like flesh and blood thing.
Who got annoyed with me for bothering her while she was trying to clean.
So it's neat that you can kind of, you start to develop a relationship with a trained actor who knows how to create a relationship with an audience member that they're supposed to be interacting with.
It was like, am I just doing like comedy improv now with the trader and it reminded me of those mpcc's in video games where like
You know at what point like do I not have a choice and what would happen if I wasn't in the mood?
Would they find a way to still guide me almost like a theme park.
Now talk about your experience at the end at the conclusion of that chapter of the story because I think we had a different expirence with that too.
Ok so I remember at the very end
That I, the frog mom goes away, this is where it gets a little fuzzy.
Frog mom goes away, I go what do I, and she's really upset, like you know, what did you do Jack?
After you traded her beloved radio for a crappy magical bean.
She throws my bean out the window as you'd expect like a very, I don't know what, I just say mom, come on
I'm playing along, and as she leaves there's a rumbling.
And all of the sudden, everything begins to get kind of crazy, and actually everything is moving.
And then I didn't know what was going on.
I kind of whited out.
And then I turned around and I saw that there was a bean stalk sprouting.
And that's when I said.
I figured it they we are being stuck.
And then I know what happened.
And then I think it kind of fades out, and it is to be continued.
And I think at that point I remember what happened, I think they took my headset off obviously, but I was-
Where you in the room still?
I was not in the room.
I got lead out.
They lead you back out on to the balcony, so I saw nothing that was in the room, but I know that we recorded what was in the room.
But I peeked at it later and it looks nothing like what I thought it would.
But no, I didn't get to see anything in there.
So I think what happened is you actually had a computer malfunction in the middle of [LAUGH]-
Are you serious?
Of your experience, yeah.
Because I, at the end of mine, She throws the bean out the window, the ground begins to shake, and the room begins to shake visually.
And you feel the sensation of the whole house being lifted up on the beanstalk.
And at the end of mine instead of it whiting it out it kind of
You can look around, and you can see things, and you're lifted up very high in the air.
You can look down the beanstalk, and it kind of transitions to showing you the door in virtual reality that you came in through.
And it says above the door to be continued, so it prompts you to lead yourself through the door.
That's actually through the door to the room so that you can transition to the next part of the story which hasn't been made yet but.
That makes a lot more sense.
But I think that's a testament to how these things work that it didnt' go as planned with yours but you
Story wise you couldn't really tell.
But it was fine.
And you could tell, that's the problem, is things logistically are so many things going on.
That, where do you install this?
I guess, they're trying to find places to do this, but it's not easy production.
So that's our Vera Theatre experience.