Ubisoft mix up gives hundreds early access to Star Trek VR game

Ubisoft’s Star Trek: Bridge Crew releases Tuesday, May 30.

It’s like Santa showing up two days before Christmas with exactly what you asked him for. This morning, virtual reality fans woke up to discover that this week’s big VR title, Star Trek: Bridge Crew, was available for purchase and download. Discord user Erthican posted the news:

Some boldly went too soon. (image credit: Ubisoft)

Star Trek Bridge Crew is available now for Oculus Home through Ubisoft’s website, instructions to get it ready to go are pinned here. We have members online and playing, looking for crew, and loving the game already. Looking forward to meeting you on the bridge!

New spread quickly to Reddit. Apparently, it only worked for users in the US and Canada, but of course a VPN comes in handy for other countries, notes Redditor, Decapper:

Just vpn to USA, you can download from U.K. Once you get key then you just need to vpn again to login. That it close vpn and play

It wasn’t long until reports of amazingly immersive gameplay rolled in:

image credit: Ubisoft

i get a total nerd thrill out of saying out everything i’m doing like i’m on the show :stuck_out_tongue: plus theres an absolute joy in not taking action you know you need to take because you havne’t been ordered to yet…
like when i was at tactical and we were headed towards mines but i didn’t get permission to fire yet and the captain was in the middle of talking so i just had to sit and watch them get closed until he was done so i could get permission [Discord user Rotalumiz]

And then the fun came to a sudden, abrupt end, when suddenly activation keys stopped working, and installed copies of Star Trek: Bridge Crew vanished from their Oculus Library. Poof!

So what happened? A Redditor and apparent Ubisoft rep, UbiCeeCee, posted an explanation:

Some players have received access to Star Trek: Bridge Crew prior to the official launch of May 30th. We have since followed up with how these were distributed and corrected the issue. As a result of this correction, if you receive an Oculus key early and try to redeem it, you will get an “unknown error has occurred when redeeming this code”. This is normal and you will be able to redeem your code when the game goes live at 12:00am EST on May 30th. We’re sorry for any confusion or inconvenience this may cause. We looking forward to seeing you all in the Trench on Tuesday

So the wait continues. But we have this description from YesICannabis420 to whet our appetite:

I have successfully completed a few missions with a brave crew and a fantastic captain, bumbled through captaining a mission myself, blown up Klingons and disabled engines on a freighter…

The response from players so far has been overwhelmingly positive in terms of the actual gameplay and general Star Trek feel. I for one feel like a dream has come true.

Exclusive: Secret details of the new virtual reality █████████ by ███████████

Redacted screen image

I can’t tell you how much I thrills me to report on my experiences. It’s been an interesting couple of weeks, let me tell you — and I’ll tell you absolutely everything you wanted to know about this virtual reality project.

Naturally, I’ll have to be careful about what I say because I signed a non-disclosure agreement. If I reveal anything I shouldn’t, I could be in some legal hot water, but at the same time, there so much to tell, so what I’ll do is describe my experiences in full detail, then redact later.

When █████████ emailed me an invitation to try their top-secret virtual reality ███████, ██████, I was thrilled. I’d been hoping to get early access to ██████ for █████████, and was chafing at the bit to get in and see what I could create.

First impression? On login, I was greeted by █ █████ ███████, which was extremely reassuring, because it means that ██████ ███ ████████ ██ ███ ██████ ██████████. There were so many intriguing ████████ that I honestly didn’t know what to try first.

Actual screen shot of XXXXXXX without any XXX XXXXXX!

Being the methodical guy I am, I decided to work alphabetically, and clicked █████ ███ ████████. Even as I write that I know readers will question my choice, but I swear at the time I had no awareness that █ ███████ is all about ██████. I was about to discover that for myself.

I clicked █████, put on my Oculus Rift, and entered █ ████ ███ ███████ ██ █████████████ ████ ███ █ ███ ███ ██████. All I can say, without revealing too much is that my █████ immediately began to ████████ with █████. A startling reaction, you’ll agree. Suddenly, █ ████ ██ █████ emerged from █ █████ with absolutely no ████ ██ ████████. I was ██████.

Afterwards, the ██████ even tried to ███████ its ████ ██████ with several others. Even the big ones! If this were real, I’d definitely have to ███ █ ██████ with a ██████! Not to mention having a █████ on the ████ ██████ made the llama a little bit ████. But isn’t that what llamas do?

I emerged from ██████ with full knowledge that I’d seen ████ █ ████████ ██████ ███████████████ ██ █████ █ and █████ ███ ███████.  The ███ ████ ██ ████ ██ ██████ fourteen or fifteen different  ███ ████ ███ ██████ a ██████ ███████████ ████ to ██ ██ ██████ ███ wobbling underneath me like a glistening ’70s party platter of tuna aspic.

And that was my first time in ██████ ████ by ███████ ████ ██. I hope I haven’t revealed too much. And I hope I can frequently return to █████ the ████ ███ █████, but next time I’ll wear a ███ █████!


Finally! Oculus Rift VR is available for pre-order

For fans of Second Life and virtual worlds in general, today there’s both good news and bad. Good news: Oculus Rift, the VR headset compatible with Second Life, after years of anticipation, is available for pre-order by consumers. Bad news: It’s really effing expensive.

The Oculus Rift VR headset (photo provided by oculus.com)
The Oculus Rift VR headset (photo provided by oculus.com)

In the lead-up to the pre-order today, Oculus kept the introductory price of their consumer-model VR kit a closely-guarded secret. Speculation was rampant. Would it be an affordable $299 investment, or would it be priced out of casual reach? It turns out it’s the latter. And then some.

At $599 USD, the Rift will cost Canadians around $850 CAD before taxes and shipping. They’ve priced it up with high-end tablets and phones, or mid-level computers. In short, only the wealthy get to have one.

As an avid fan of virtual worlds myself, I was hoping to be among the first to upgrade to a fully immersive consumer-grade VR setup. I can’t justify the expense even though I produce content for Second Life and would probably use it almost daily. $850 CAD is too much.

So my dream of immersing myself in Second Life — seeing Bay City or 1920s Berlin, gawking at the buildings, airships, and landscapes — all that will have to wait until the price comes down by at least half. VR isn’t a reality yet.


Avi Choice Mag: “The Return of Cubey Terra”

March/April 2015 cover of Avi Choice Magazine. An article about me is buried deep at page 59. Fame! Fortune!
March/April 2015 cover of Avi Choice Magazine. An article about me is buried deep at page 59. Fame! Fortune!

The renowned and voluminous online mag, Avi Choice, has an article about my return to making planes in Second Life. Even though the story is several weeks out of date, it’s nice to be noticed.


Next up: twin engines, retro design

As I posted previously, Terra Atom launched at the beginning of this month. The launch event brought virtual aviators both old and new and even attracted the elusive and mysterious Governor Linden in the form of a hamster with some excellent dance moves.

I’d like to say thanks to everyone who dropped by to support the launch, the skilled testers who helped me finish Atom, and the pilots who bought and fly Terra Atom. Without all of you, Atom wouldn’t have happened.

Twin-engine plane prototype in Blender.
Twin-engine plane prototype in Blender.

Atom isn’t the end, though; it’s only the beginning. As I write this, I have my latest prototype open in Blender. For this one, I’m building around a classic teardrop fuselage: larger at the front and tapering to a point. The wing shape is inspired by aircraft of the 1930s, and the cockpit is as far back as possible. The entire shape is intended to give the impression of a powerful force pulling a tapered shape through the sky.

It’s a prototype at this stage, so fundamental shapes and features may still change, but I’m happy to be at this stage after a couple of weeks, especially considering that a hard drive crash left me dead in the water for several days.

Keep an eye on this site for updates. I’ll post pictures and news.

Blue skies.