Lovers of VR gaming and those looking for fun date night ideas, take note: This summer, Tysons, Virginia is getting a new spot for you, courtesy of Sandbox VR.
The company, which already has several locations throughout North America, Asia and Europe, is opening a new one in NoVa at 1656 Silver Hill Drive, where it’ll be part of the emerging The Boro development. The 7,500-square-foot space features a full-body VR experience, including motion-tracking technology and haptics. The facility will include four private rooms for up to six players known as “holodecks.” At present, Sandbox told Technical.ly that it was unable to share any further details about the location.
According to the company’s website, the experience is inspired by the Holodeck from Star Trek. The games are built by former Sony, Ubisoft (creator of “Assasins Creed” and “Just Dance,” among others) and EA Games (“The Sims” and “FIFA”) developers. Upon entering, players will receive a headset, backpack, haptic vest and motion sensors for the wrists and ankles; they’ll also have the option to pick from six games. Sandbox said that the games are designed to make players feel like they’re starring in their own action films.
“At The Boro, we strive to create an interactive, socially engaged neighborhood cultivated by experiential retailers like Sandbox VR,” said Charlie Schwieger, VP for The Boro developer Meridian Group, in a statement. “With a concept that promotes community and team building through technological innovation, Sandbox VR makes a unique, exciting addition to The Boro’s growing portfolio of eclectic restaurants, shops and attractions.”
Sandbox is the latest to bring an IRL VR gaming experience to the DMV. In 2021, VR arcade VR Zone DC opened a second location in Rockville, Maryland. And in February of last year, Electric Gamebox announced a spot in the Ballston Quarter shopping mall.
Sandbox has previously received investments from celebrities including Justin Timberlake, Katy Perry, Kevin Durant and Will Smith. Most recently, it raised a $37 million funding round. The end goal, founders have said, is to bring a holodeck to every neighborhood.
“We believe that the holodeck will happen, and that we will all want to use one,” former executive and current board member Siqi Chen wrote in a Medium post regarding the company’s growth. “I believe that some of us will have holodecks at home, and for the rest of us, there will be dozens of holodecks in every neighborhood around the world.”
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