Meta is shutting down one of its biggest VR games — but only for Quest 1 owners
Around the same time, Meta raised the price of its Quest 2 headset, and it also announced that it would end support for the Quest 1 population one, a popular battle royale shooter set in virtual reality. BigBox VR, the Meta-owned developer behind the game, shared the update in a post on his blognoting that starting October 31, 2022, Quest 1 owners will no longer be able to launch or play the game.
BigBox VR said the shutdown was necessary so it could focus on developing new experiences “that will push the boundaries of multiplayer VR.”Developers point out that you can still play Population: 1 via air link — a feature that lets you play games wirelessly on your PC through your headset — but that means if you haven’t repurchased the game on Steam. Gamers on Quest 2, Oculus Rift and Oculus Rift S will still have access to the game.
While Meta provides Quest 1 owners with Population: 1, there’s a catch: you must have purchased the game from the Quest Store within the past six months. The policy seems a little unfair for a game that launched on the Quest nearly two years ago, and could leave many players playing games they couldn’t even play (unless, of course, they upgrade to the current $399 Quest 2 or use the Air Link, which requires an expensive VR-enabled PC).
Population: 1The closure also raises the question of whether other developers will soon discontinue support for the three-year-old Quest 1. Meta spokeswoman Caiti Sullivan said in a statement edge The company is currently “working out the details of the ecosystem-wide end-of-support process” and “other developers who choose to end support for Quest 1 apps will be able to do so.” When asked if other games will end support for the Quest 1 in the near future Meta declined to comment further on the Quest 1’s support.
I know the game won’t support all older systems forever, but the price hike, and the announcement that it will soon make Quest 1 owners one less game to play, feels like a double whammy to the gut.As my colleague Jay Peters pointed out, Meta could raise the price of the Quest 2, and possibly even push users to use it, to stop its virtual reality division from making a first and Q2 2022.