Title: Owlchemy Labs’ Journey into Virtual Reality: Lessons Learned Building VR Games
Description: Alex Schwartz will relate the story of building his independent game studio Owlchemy Labs, their first “a-ha!” moments with virtual reality, and the steps leading to the opportunities that propelled their company into the VR spotlight. He’ll also share practical design tips for developing apps in this exciting new medium.
Bio: Alex Schwartz (WPI IMGD ‘09) is the CEO, Chief Executive Owl, and Janitor of VR studio Owlchemy Labs, creators of the HTC Vive, Oculus Touch, and PlayStation VR triple-platform launch title Job Simulator as well as Rick and Morty: Virtual Rick-ality. As one of the first studios to dive head-first into the VR space, Owlchemy Labs’ efforts have resulted in some of the top-played VR content in the world. Job Simulator earned numerous awards, including Best VR/AR Game at the 2017 Game Developers Conference, Best VR Game of 2016 from Unity, and Best Family Game at Cinequest 2017. It was also selected for the New Frontiers exhibit of the 2017 Sundance Film Festival.
Owlchemy Labs was acquired by Google/Alphabet in May 2017. As co-founder of their VR Austin group, Alex plays an active role in the gaming and VR community by speaking around the world, organizing events, and smoking various exotic meats down in Austin, TX.