Virtual reality has been around for a while. Between Second Life, World of Warcraft and Entropia Universe, gamers have been experiencing something the rest of the world thought was just a role playing game.
Most recently, British-born Jon Jacobs sold Club Neverdie on Planet Calypso in the game Entropia Universe for real cash changing how the business world sees virtual property. With this single transaction, the idea of creating, developing, buying and selling something which only exists in the mind or in the space of the Internet became something tangible.
Keeping this in mind, MindArk is offering businesses the ability to buy into their virtual world creating their own unique planet. Several partners already exist although not all the “worlds” are ready for participation from online gamers. Included in the partnership is First Planet Company, responsible for the most popular planet on Entropia Universe, Calypso. Other companies such as SEE Virtual Worlds is creating Hollywood branded virtual worlds based on studios, movies, television, celebrities, etc. There are also music worlds, time travel, treasure hunting/puzzle solving among others.
Within each of these planets or worlds, the developers offer virtual property for sale which participants can build and develop further including virtual buildings, stores, professions, services, etc. Each world has the potential to have its own economy with the capability of turning cash to virtual cash and back to real cash.
The limitations of this new way of thinking about how to do business are only those of the mind. In effect, anything you can think of you can build, become, create, etc. Now, previous limitations both physical and mental can be overcome. No longer is one confined by looks, personality or skills. Everything changes and can be changed by the person controlling the character.
If one’s gender is the issue with the ability to make a “deal” it can be changed online. Multiple characters can be conceived and created to exchange ideas through various means within the virtual world.
For example, a friend of mine has had so much trouble getting a job because he is way to heavy to walk around, limiting his opportunities. He also isn’t the most attractive guy and in the world of entertainment, looks can deter what you want to do. Therefore, in order to generate business, he created on online “personality” who contacts people and sells radio advertising. He is the one actually creating the ads and doing the business, however his female alter-ego makes the deals chatting with people through instant messenger to seal the deals. It’s working and where he couldn’t find a job before, he’s now making money. Clients are happy with the end results and his business is doing well.
Although we like to think of ourselves as all that and a bag of chips, now we really can be who we want, represent ourselves with the best foot forward or be the villain we’ve always wanted to be. The possibilities are endless thanks to the world of virtual reality.