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‘Minecraft’ takes big step into VR, will add Oculus Rift support next week

You can step into your Minecraft creations starting next week — if you own an Oculus Rift.

Mojang employee Tommaso Checchi confirmed on Twitter that an update for the Windows 10 version of Minecraft will add Rift support, and that the update is coming next week, according to WinBeta. This means gamers will be able to put on the Rift headset and walk around the world of Minecraft using an Xbox One controller.

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The new feature will only be added to the Windows 10 version of Minecraft, but don’t worry about not having that version. If you already purchased Minecraft, you can get the Windows 10 version for free by logging on to the Mojang website and redeeming your copy in the Windows Store.

Microsoft acquired Mojang, the company behind Minecraft, in 2014. By making Rift support exclusive to the Windows 10 version of Minecraft, Microsoft is giving gamers a reason to try out the Windows Store, which might help that struggling platform gain traction.

But the business angle on this story isn’t nearly as interesting as the opportunity to fully immerse yourself into the pixelated world of Minecraft. The first-person building game seems like a perfect fit for virtual reality, especially when you consider all the crazy creations people have made in the game over the years. There’s certainly a whole lot to explore.

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Of course, Minecraft is far from realistic: Its famously blocky graphics looked nostalgic even back in 2011, when it was first released. But simple graphics don’t make this game any less immersive, and the creativity of its users is no small part of that. We look forward to what VR can bring to this game on the Rift.

But if you can’t wait a week for VR Minecraft, the Pocket version of the game already works with Minecraft Gear VR. These are exciting times for brick builders everywhere!