This weekend, Star Wars devotees descended upon the Excel Exhibition Centre in London for Celebration 2016, an event packed with guest appearances and in-depth panels. The convention also saw Industrial Light & Magic unveil a brand new virtual reality experience set in the Star Wars universe and starring the most recognizable character in the canon: Darth Vader.
A brief trailer was shown, but it didn’t reveal much other than the presence of the Sith lord, and a setting that looks reminiscent of the volcanic landscape of the planet Mustafar.
David S. Goyer, screenwriter of movies including Batman Begins and Man of Steel, appeared to announce the project. The fact that he’s working on the project suggests more of a narrative component than the studio’s previous VR experience, Trials on Tatooine.
Trials on Tatooine was released on July 18, and since its initial reveal at GDC 2016, it’s been referred to as an “experiment.” However, the Darth Vader project was explicitly described as “non-experimental” during the Celebration panel, according to a report from Road to VR.
Therefore the new VR experience might have more depth than the straightforward action offered up in Trials of Tatooine. Given that Mustafar is the planet where Anakin Skywalker sustained the injuries that force him to wear his iconic black armor, there’s plenty of opportunity for an engaging narrative.
No release date or platform specifics were announced for Vader VR. But since the character is slated to make his return in this year’s Rogue One, a release close to the movie’s theatrical debut would make sense. Fans can tide themselves over by playing Trials on Tatooine, which is available now via Steam.