Oculus Rift takes gamers back to the ’80s with this retro game within a game

21 Jul 2015

Pixel Ripped 1989, a retro game within a 1980s virtual-reality world, is currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter

Step back in time with Pixel Ripped, a virtual-reality game that plonks you into a 1989 classroom with a classic handheld gaming device to keep you entertained — just don’t get caught by teacher!

Pixel Ripped 1989 is being developed for the Oculus Rift and Gear VR virtual reality headsets, using this technology to transplant players into 1989 as Nicola, a young girl who’d much rather play an 8-bit platfomer on her (safely sidestepping trademarks) ‘Game Girl’ than pay attention in class.

So, the gamer plays as a gamer trying to play a game, and the aim of the game is to complete the game within the game, but being caught playing the game within the game will mean you lose the game. Got it?

Just watch how these YouTube gamers got on with this head-spinning meta reality.

Pixel Ripped currently emulates a Game Boy-style experience within the virtual world of the Oculus Rift, and programmer Ana Ribeiro and 3D artist Stef Keegan have promised a variety of retro throwbacks from future instalments – next up, the ‘Fauxtari 2600’ for Pixel Ripped 1979 and a classic arcade game for Pixel Ripped 1984.

Having started as Ribeiro’s masters project, Pixel Ripped has exhausted the limited funding resources of its team and is now crowdfunding on Kickstarter in order to bring development to the next level. The team are currently seeking £40,000 all-or-nothing funding from backers who, in return, can snag themselves a copy of the game for either Gear VR or Oculus Rift. (There will also be a non-VR version released exclusively to backers.)

It’s a tricky one, as neither VR device has had a commercial release yet – but it’s hard not to believe in a team that has the inception-level brainpower to come up with this clever concept in the first place.

Pixel Ripped 1989 meme

Gigglebit is Siliconrepublic.com’s daily dose of the funny and fantastic in science and tech, to help start your day on a lighter note.

Elaine Burke is the host of For Tech’s Sake, a co-production from Silicon Republic and The HeadStuff Podcast Network. She was previously the editor of Silicon Republic.