Given the times that we live in—where terms like ‘social distancing‘ and ‘Zoom meetings‘ have become the ‘new norm‘ of our daily lives—it’s understandable that many of us are at the point of burnout. Now, more than ever, it’s important to stay connected with friends, family members, and even colleagues to keep us going for as long as the pandemic ensues.
On the bright side, technology has provided a multitude of ways for urbanites to spend virtual bonding time with their loved ones. Although it may never replace quality time in-person, at the very least, it provides us with the means to communicate with and entertain each other to assuage the weight of the pandemic on our tested spirits.
Enter Gather Town, a cross between conventional video conferencing platforms and an 8-bit video game, offering a myriad of templates (aka virtual worlds) for a fun alternative to monotonous Zoom or Google hangouts. Each user will appear as a pixelated avatar to navigate rooms, interact with objects or chat with communities within each world. By incorporating spatial technology, the platform allows users to have private conversations with one or more users by entering a ‘private space’ together or simply moving away from other users. Users can also easily turn on/off their camera and microphone or use the screen sharing option for presentations or livestreams.
There are over 60 templates to choose from to create your own interactive space, from office complexes and conference rooms to beach bars, castles, and more. Alternatively, you can try to create a virtual world from scratch and customise the layout and furniture to your liking, then add/embed external elements including text, games, links, documents, and videos. For those looking for game night ideas, there are also preset game rooms and virtual escape rooms to explore.
Team BURO Malaysia gave the Dungeon Escape template a go in the name of ‘team building’ while escaping the troubles of the real world. Watch the video above to find out our thoughts and reactions, and whether you should try it with your mates.
Explore more virtual experiences here.
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