I’m late to these sorts of viral videos, so chances are you’ve already seen these if you’re at all interested in VR. But I thought I’d post them together, as they provide an interesting juxtaposition of the emotional reactions that VR elicits.
First, a grandmother going bonkers.
And here, a lady losing her shit playing a zombie VR game.
This is how people initially react to any new visual medium. In 1896, the following film (and films like it) literally caused people to gasp and jump out of the way.
Sometime in the late eighties, I was visiting my grandmother in Davenport, Iowa, with my family. My dad and I sat down one night in their den and watched an episode of our favorite show, Dr. Who. I remember it being one of those gloriously lo-budget Tom Baker episodes. In this particular episode, the Doctor is tormented by mummy robots. These robots killed their prey by slowly walking toward them and squishing them in a kind of menacing group hug. As my dad and I were cracking up at the cheeseball nature of this form of demise, my grandmother wandered into the room, looked at us, looked at what was on TV, and said, “This isn’t scary to you?”
Point being, we learn how to get bored by a medium, how to get jaded, how to turn into Beavis and Butthead, sitting on a couch, mocking the lame production values of entertainment that was cutting edge years before. The same thing is going to happen with VR. Some day the experiences available in VR now will look dated and our kids will mock us for ever being so scared or so thrilled.