If the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) head-mounted display (HMD) has a mascot right now it’s surely Lucky, the protagonist of upcoming platform-based title, Lucky’s Tale. The videogame, developed by Playful and published by Oculus VR itself, was first revealed back in 2014 and his since featured prominently at a number of showcases of the Oculus Rift itself in the year that’s followed. Today, Playful is announcing that it has raised some $25 million USD to continue its working on new IP for cutting edge technologies such as VR.
Specific investors haven’t been announced, but Playful will be using the funds to expand its team, which has also been working on Creativerse for PC. Lucky’s Tale, meanwhile, will be releasing alongside the consumer version of the Oculus Rift itself in the first quarter of 2016. With the new funds raised the company will also look to creating new, original projects, though isn’t yet ready to hint at what these might be and if they could support VR platforms.
“Interactive entertainment is the 21st century art form,” said studio founder and CEO Paul Bettner. “Now, thanks to breakthrough technologies, our players will literally inhabit our stories, reach out and embrace our characters. It is indistinguishable from magic. That’s why we raised this money. Because the most important growth opportunity our industry has ever experienced is starting now.
“We’re inspired by Snow White, by Toy Story, by Mario,” he continued. “These beloved stories and characters share something in common: technology made them possible. Motion pictures, CG characters, interactive video games — these advances enabled fundamentally new levels of empathy and audience connection. We founded Playful to carry on this tradition.”
VRFocus will continue to follow Playful’s work in VR, reporting back with the latest updates on its development.