By Richard Wordsworth
When I was little, I never wanted a jetpack. I still don’t. My Lego men had jetpacks, and even five-year-old me could see that if you bent their stubby little legs back, the twin jets of flame coming out the back of the engines would melt their plastic feet. Rubbish. When I was little, I wanted virtual reality, like in Tron. And now it’s basically here. It even plays Hawken – which basically makes it a jetpack anyway.
Joyless cynics might argue it’s not quite Tron yet. VR is still in its teething stage, still an experiment; a bunch of different companies and entrepreneurs flinging ideas and cash at the same problem from different directions, trying to get us closer to our holodeck future. But why now? Why, after years of resignation to arcades and horrors like the Virtual Boy are these start-ups able to challenge billion-dollar companies for control of gamers’ living rooms?
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