It's the '80s and you're a robot. That's the premise of Oculus' first feature-length VR experience, "Miyubi," which just debuted to the general public (though Sundance and other festival attendees got a taste of it earlier this year).
The story puts you in the shoes of the title character, a droid who becomes part of a suburban American family (he's a gift from Japan to son Dennis, from Dad who felt a bit guilty being away on business trips all the time). The tale explores themes of love and obsolence -- perhaps you could call Miyubi the VR version of Woody from "Toy Story."
Not surprisingly, the creators of the experience are Felix & Paul, the directing duo behind some of the most seminal work in VR. But they also had an unlikely partner -- FunnyorDie.
The film, oddly enough, is comedy -- (not exactly Felix & Paul's forte, as the pair built their reputation on creating thoughtful, almost meditative pieces that encourage an extreme sense of presence, including an intimate listening session with musician Patrick Watson, and a look at the White House through the Obama family's eyes). But "Miyubi" finds a way to mesh all of that -- with the help of tons of nostalgic references and fun, quirky characters.
"Miyubi" clocks in at a whopping (nearly) 40-minutes long -- that's about three times the length of the average experience. One thing that might keep you going? Jeff Goldblum has a cameo in an Easter Egg -- but you'll have to pay close attention throughout to unlock him. (Check him out in FunnyorDie's teaser ad).
"Miyubi" is available now for free for the Rift and Gear VR.