Justin Roiland and Tanya Watson Launch VR Game Development Studio Squanchtendo
Rick and Morty co-creator Justin Roiland wants to develop and produce comedic VR games, and he’s teamed up with former Epic Games executive producer Tanya Watson to make it happen. Today the two announced the launch of their new VR game development studio Squanchtendo, and although they didn’t give away many details, the first VR game they have in the works is a “comedic action-RPG.”
“I’ve been dabbling and fairly obsessed with VR across the different platforms,” Roiland told Polygon. “I’ve been filling notebooks with ideas and of course talking to a bunch of different developers and exchanging notes about what works and what doesn’t work in VR.” Here’s what Roiland told UploadVR on his goal for the company:
“There are very few VR games with really strong characters and voice acting,” Roiland said. “The goal for us to do with Squanchtendo is to approach all of our projects with a goal of adding interesting characters, personality, and a story to interact with in-game. Every game we make will be built from the ground up for whatever hardware it will launch on.”
It’s not going to be easy to do, existing developers haven’t just suddenly decided to make shallow games. Deeply engaging stories take time to craft and, as a new studio, Squanchtendo have only really just begun working on their projects in a real way very recently.
“The biggest thing you can do in VR that you can’t really do in non-VR games, is a huge focus on exploration and interaction,” Roiland said. “Putting the player inside of an experience and letting them stumble upon characters of all sizes. We want to craft narratives with a solid, macro, broad goal that feels powerful. Story-based VR isn’t very prevalent right now.”
In addition to the comedic RPG in development, Roiland says we can expect Squanchtendo’s other projects to have a comedic bent too. “Ultimately, we want to make the types of experiences that we want to play as gamers,” he said. “Tonally, the stuff I want to do in VR will of course always have a comedic backbone and be a bit absurdist and colorful with really interesting and bizarre characters, but supported by really strong gameplay mechanics.” For more info, head over to the Squanchtendo website and check out the illustrated press release below: