Chuck E. Cheese Plans to Party with Oculus Rift in Select Areas

Paul Lilly

Oculus Rift will virtualize the ticket blaster experience

If you've ever been to a Chuck E. Cheese birthday party before, then you're familiar with the Ticket Blaster -- a phone booth sized contraption filled with single tickets, plus a special 1,000 ticket piece of paper. The kid celebrating his or her birthday gets to slip inside and try to grab as many tickets as possible as a vortex of wind swirls them around. Kids love it, but at select locations, Chuck E. Cheese will create a virtual Ticket Blaster experience using the Oculus Rift .

"Kids today have unprecedented access to game consoles and tablets," said Roger Cardinale , president, CEC Entertainment, Inc. "Our challenge is to deliver an experience not available at home, and there is no doubt virtual reality does just that. Oculus Rift technology is the next frontier in the gaming industry, and we're thrilled to be able to say it's part of the Chuck E. Cheese's lineup."

The Oculus Rift VR headset will register how many tickets the kid collects as they spin a full 360 degrees. Users are supposed to feel like they're in the machine, though whether it's successful or not remains to be seen -- Chuck E. Cheese will test the technology at more than 15 locations for a period of six weeks.

"We believe that virtual reality eventually will be as popular as our handheld devices," said Reel FX founder and Executive Creative Director Dale Carman. "It's a game-changer, and we're investing incredible time and talent into developing content for the Oculus Rift."

This isn't exactly the kind of thing we had hoped for when Facebook acquired Oculus Rift for $2 billion back in March, but hey, it's better than virtual Candy Crush, right? Right!?

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