'Operation Apex' will let you take a virtual reality dive with great whites

Even though Curiscope’s Operation Apex shark experience is set to bring you closer than ever to life-like sharks in virtual reality, this is no Jaws adaptation. It is designed to encourage adoration and respect of one of nature’s most maligned predators in a setting that is both visceral and entirely safe: An HTC Vive headset.

It is perhaps telling of humanity’s enduring fear of great white sharks that some of the earliest virtual reality experiences for VR headsets like the Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR were shark encounters. While those reinforced the idea that these enormous creatures are out for human blood, Curiscope’s Operation Apex, produced in partnership with HTC’s Vive Studios, is taking a more educational, and ultimately realistic, approach.

Curiscope previously released a 360-degree video on YouTube that brought viewers up close and personal with some great whites and it became hugely popular. It also gave the innovative mixed reality developer the drive to create something greater and more impactful. Following on from projects like its Virtuali-Tee shirt design, it is now looking to educate the world of VR users about sharks and marine life in general.

While the early preview trailer plays up the idea that sharks can be scary, it shows how motion controllers will act as a source of light and propulsion in the underwater world players will explore. Curiscope claims that players will be able to interact with sharks and “other elusive creatures that are rarely seen outside of their natural habitats.”

Even with the emphasis on education though, in a sentence that is sure to tickle your dormant thalassophobia (fear of the sea), Curiscope claims that the sharks in Operation Apex will be able to react to your presence.

It seems unlikely that that reaction will be aggressive, however, as Curiscope’s goal with this upcoming experience is to inspire people to care more about the oceans. There will be other underwater denizens to play with too. While we don’t know what they are yet, if the early trailer is anything to go by, they will probably look creepy, but ultimately prove to be our good friends by the end of it.

Here’s hoping, at least.

Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'The Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘The Good Place’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Virtual Reality

Think virtual reality is just for games? These awesome apps will change your mind

Virtual reality isn't all about gaming. Swim with turtles, paint in 3D, and immerse yourself in some unique experiences the platform has to offer with our curated list of the best VR apps.

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.

Where are you going this weekend? These 5 off-road vehicles say 'anywhere'

The body-on-frame SUV is going extinct, but there are still several options for buyers looking to skip the asphalt. To help you sort the good from the bad, we've rounded up the best off-roaders currently available.

Want to game on your Chromebook? Here's where to start

Chromebooks aren't great for gaming, but there are a few titles that most machines can run. There's a surprisingly diverse crowd that includes role-playing games, action side-scrollers, and puzzlers.

Dominate in multiplayer with a few of our favorite 'Battlefield 5' weapons

Here are some of the best weapons you can use to get the upper hand in Battlefield 5's multiplayer, including assault rifles, sniper rifles, pistols, and anti-tank tools.

Playing ‘Battlefield V’ on an $800 Nvidia card is stunning. And disappointing

‘Battlefield V’ is the first game to use Nvidia’s ray tracing support, now available with the RTX 2080 and 2080 Ti graphics cards. The feature can, in an ideal scenario, make the game look better, but the performance hit may not be…
Product Review

‘Let’s Go Pikachu’ and ‘Let’s Go Eevee’ feel like true ‘Pokémon Go’ RPGs

Pokémon: Let’s Go’s simplified reimagining of Pokémon Yellow has a great balance of old and new mechanics. It has a streamlined approach that makes it easy to get into, but depth remains for longtime fans.

How to become a master assassin and perfect the art of execution in 'Hitman 2'

'Hitman 2' introduces new and improved story missions with a scale that can feel overwhelming if you're not prepared. Learn everything you need to know to obtain a high score while remaining unnoticed.
Digital Trends Live

Digital Trends Live: Nissan turmoil, product designer Jae Yoo of Nerf, and more

For today's episode of Digital Trends Live, we turn our attention to the L.A. Auto Show and Lamborghini's race-ready version of the Urus. We also speak with Jae Yoo of Nerf and MLS defender Zarek Valentin about their origins, modern tech…

The best Gamestop Black Friday deals in 2018

Gamestop is hosting one heck of a Black Friday and Cyber Monday promotion period, highlighted by excellent deals on games, gaming consoles, and gaming accessories. We combed through everything and have all the best Gamestop Black Friday…

The best cheap-but-awesome PlayStation 4 game deals under $20

The PlayStation 4 has hit its stride in recent years and is now more affordable than ever. If you have a PS4 or are thinking of buying one, we’ve collected some must-have games. The best part? Each of these is just $20 or less.

Valve responds after ‘Artifact’ slammed for taking microtransactions too far

Streamers and gamers heavily criticized the monetization model of Artifact, as the digital card game may have taken microtransactions too far. Valve quickly responded to the feedback, with planned changes to the game's public beta.

‘Darksiders III’ gets its own Fury-led ASMR series, and it’s weird

Darksiders III is out in less than a week, and to celebrate the game's impending release, publisher THQ Nordic has released an ASMR video starring Fury. The video focuses on her fire abilities.