Minecraft released on Oculus Rift with new Windows upgrade

16 Aug 2016

The partnership between Minecraft and Oculus has reached fruition, with the long-expected release of the incredibly popular Minecraft on the Oculus Rift.

Minecraft has so far served two purposes in modern society. One of the most popular games in the world, it has also turned into an educational tool through its MinecraftEdu platform.

Now, it’s entering the world of virtual reality (VR) with Oculus Rift welcoming it into the fold via a free update in Windows 10 Edition beta. If you already own the game on desktop, you’re entitled to the free upgrade here.

It comes hot on the heels of Microsoft – Minecraft’s owner – buying Beam, a Seattle-based game-streaming start-up, enabling the software giant to muscle in on the live-streaming market currently dominated by Twitch and YouTube.

“This acquisition will help gamers enjoy the games they want with the people they want, and on the devices they want,” said Chad Gibson, partner group programme manager for Xbox Live.

“Using Minecraft as one example, with Beam you don’t just watch your favourite streamer play, you play along with them.”

Minecraft Oculus Rift

Back in March, it emerged that Minecraft was to become an advanced AI playground for developers, with them asked to develop research simulations using the game. This, it was claimed, would be a lot cheaper and “more sophisticated” than creating a physical robot.

Rather than using the Minecraft most familiar to its players, developers use a modified version that includes an open-source software platform called AIX.

This gives the AI creation the ability to take control of characters in the game, all within the confines of the developers’ own networks and not while connected to the internet, however, eventually the AI creations could be unleashed to interact with human players.

Main Minecraft image via Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic