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Meta is discontinuing one of its biggest VR games — but only for Quest 1 owners

Meta is discontinuing one of its biggest VR games — but only for Quest 1 owners

Around the same time Meta raised the price of its Quest 2 headsets, it also announced that it was ending Quest 1 support for Population One, a popular battle-royal shooter set in virtual reality. Bigbox VR, the meta-owned developer behind the game, shared the update in a post on its blog, noting that Quest 1 owners will no longer be able to launch or play the game starting October 31, 2022.

Bigbox VR says the shutdown is necessary so it can focus on developing new experiences "that will push the boundaries of multiplayer VR." The developers note that you can still play Population: via an Air Link — a feature that lets you play games from your headset on your PC wirelessly — but that means repurchasing the game on Steam. . If you haven't already. Players using Quest 2, Oculus Rift and Oculus Rift S will still be able to access the game.

While Meta Quest offers refunds to Population owners of 1: One, there's a catch: You must purchase the game from the Quest Store within the last six months. The policy seems unfair for a game that launched on Quest nearly two years ago and would potentially leave many players with a game they can't even play (of course, they're now at $399 Quest). 2 or Air Link, which requires an expensive VR-ready PC).

Population: One's shutdown also raises questions about whether other developers will soon add support for the three-year-old Quest 1. Meta spokeswoman Katy Sullivan said in a statement to The Verge that the company is currently working on "details of an ecosystem support process" and that "other developers who choose to end support for apps on Quest 1 , they will be able to continue to work on the details of an ecosystem-wide support process." They'll be able to do that." Meta declined to comment further when asked if any other games will end Quest 1 support in the near future.

I know the games may not support every older system forever, but with an announcement that the price hike will soon leave Quest 1 owners playing one less game, that is. It's like a double punch. As my colleague Jay Peters points out, Meta could raise the price of Quest 2 in the first and second quarters of 2022 to offset the loss of its virtual reality arm, and perhaps even push users towards it.

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