A new virtual reality arcade is taking over the old Organic Cat Café location on Main Street in downtown Greenville.
Wantec VR, which is scheduled to open March 28, aims to bring fully immersive, full-body virtual reality entertainment to Greenville, including simulated race-car driving, two free-roaming multiplayer shooting games and two free-roaming quest games.
“These aren’t five-minute games,” said Stefan Rupp, who co-owns Wantec VR along with his wife, Daria. “Our games are all 45 minutes. We want it to be an experience you go to with your friends and family, something you do together with other people.”
The virtual race room, which will accommodate up to 12 people per game, features seating-and-steering rigs that provide tactile feedback, while participants themselves wear virtual reality goggles or view the race on a screen, depending upon their preference. Racing will also have different difficulty settings with less-complex controls to accommodate younger children.
The shooting simulations, which take place in open rooms, consist of teams of four fighting off waves of virtual zombies in a skyscraper setting. Wearing VR goggles and holding controller guns, players ascend to higher and higher levels of the virtual building as the game progresses, fighting zombies along the way until they ultimately reach the roof to escape.
The quest games, also free-roaming, allow players to explore “special worlds in search of diamonds and other treasures.”
In all games, Rupp said players don’t have to worry about bumping into others.
“With the tracking technology, you will see the other people you’re fighting with. In the zombie game, for instance, they have special outfits, like in ‘Terminator,’ with metallic armor,” Rupp said. “You can see yourself, too. Move your arms, and you see your arms as they would be in real life.”
Unlike arcades like Dave and Buster’s, Wantec VR games are played based on appointment. Rupp said the games are designed for kids and adults of all ages.