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First Impressions: ‘Vader Immortal’ at Star Wars Celebration 2019

Become one with the dark side with the latest Star Wars video game, Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series. If you were keeping up with all the news from Star Wars Celebration 2019 this past weekend, you may have noticed a new trailer from the fine folks at ILMxLAB, developers of Trials on Tatooine and Star Wars: Droid Repair Bay.

First announced at Star Wars Celebration 2016, Vader Immortal is an Oculus VR experience where the player is the right-hand man of the imposing Darth Vader. The 45-60 minutes of part one will place you right between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope, telling a story which pulls inspiration from the 2016 film Rogue One.

During a panel at ​Star Wars ​Celebration in Chicago, the team announced that acclaimed actress and comedienne Maya Rudolph will star as ZOE3, a quick-witted droid co-pilot that audiences will partner with throughout the story. “Much in the way Alan Tudyk did with K-2SO, we needed somebody for this role that could create a unique character using their improvisation and performance skills,” said writer and executive producer David S. Goyer. “Maya truly was the first person we thought of, right from the very beginning, and her contributions and sense of humor have guided ZOE3 every step of the way.”

We were lucky enough to get hands-on with a small slice of the experience this weekend and it was awesome! Growing up, I’ve always imagined what it would be like to actually fight with a lightsaber, and I’m so glad I finally got to experience it. With the new Oculus headset, I didn’t have to worry about cords or getting tangled, which was such a relief because I was able to do a complete 360, and not have to worry about getting stuck in the cords. Working alongside Darth Vader was awesome and in the game itself, they make him taller than you which makes his presence much more intimidating, even though it’s virtual reality.

“Oculus Quest unlocks new ways to create. It shifts the design paradigm by freeing creators from certain constraints, and the untethered form factor was one of the key reasons we partnered with the ILMxLAB team on this project,” said Slevin. “What makes ​Vader Immortal​ so exciting is that this kind of story, this kind of moment in the ​Star Wars​ canon, can only happen in VR. You’ll see what I mean the moment you fire up a lightsaber and wield it in your hands.”

Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series – Episode I​ is scheduled for release this spring.

(Courtesy of LucasFilm Ltd)

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