Explore the land of the dead in Pixar’s virtual reality experience, ‘Coco VR’

Pixar has a new movie out in cinemas later in November and it’s set to be accompanied by the studio’s first foray into virtual reality. Coco VR lets you experience the day of the dead firsthand, donning your headset to perform a range of activities inspired by the film.

“Pixar and Disney take human imagination and render it larger than life,” Coco VR producer Marc Sondheimer said in an interview published on the Oculus blog. “VR is the natural next step in our evolution, letting people experience these worlds in living color.”

The experience begins in the home of Miguel, the protagonist of Coco. As he’s called away by his mother, you fall into a trance, where you meet a skeleton called Ceci who helps you customize your avatar with a variety of different clothing options.

From there, you are given the freedom to explore the virtual environment at your own pace. The Land of the Dead bears all the artistic flourishes that it boasts in the movie, inspired by traditional Mexican artwork and, of course, the type of celebrations we associate with Día de los Muertos.

Teleporting around the town square will lead you to a swathe of different diversions. An elevator can be used to gain a better view of your surroundings, while a theme park-inspired ride will let you get a glimpse of the whole square. Alternatively, you can just try on a selection of hats and items of facial hair and take some silly selfies.

There is also an art studio where you can pore over concept art and other imagery. It’s jam-packed with information about the traditions that inspired the movie, according to Road to VR.

Pixar’s output carries a prestige beyond most animated movies, so it’s no surprise to see that every effort has been made to imbue this tie-in with a similar level of quality. The team Coco VR, Magnopus, also produced the well-received Memory Lab experience that was released in support of Blade Runner 2049.

Coco VR is available now via the Oculus store for free. A version optimized for Gear VR is set to launch alongside the movie on Wednesday, November 22.

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