Update: HTC has reached out to clarify that Front Defense is not in fact made by HTC. The upcoming game is actually produced by Fantahorn Studio, a new startup that is “an independent content developer that includes current HTC employees. HTC is sponsoring this team as an ‘internal startup’ solely dedicated to working on their VR content.” So in other words, HTC isn’t directly making the games, but, at least to some degree, partnering with Fantahorn to produce VR content.
As a pioneer of the mobile revolution, HTC is known for a variety of products, from seemingly immortal smartphones, to connected scales and quirky photo apps. We can now add video games to the list, as HTC prepares to release Front Defense, its very own VR game.
HTC will introduce Defense Front at Computex 2016 next week. The Taipei trade show is known for hardware releases – laptops and, more recently, tablets are the norm – but HTC might be looking to capitalize on its home advantage with this unusual announcemnt.
For now, we have precious few details about Front Defense. We know it will be some sort of shooter and that players will be handed a variety of weapons and be tasked with defending against waves of enemies. If it sounds a lot like a generic military action shooter, it’s because that’s what Front Defense probably is. And that’s understandable for a debut game launching on a still nascent platform.
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Front Defense is developed by HTC’s “internal VR software startup.” This could be the new company that HTC CEO Cher Wang incorporated earlier this year, which officially, is supposed to be developing nondescript “new technologies.” What’s certain is that we’ll only see a demo at Computex and the actual release of Front Defense could be a ways off.
HTC is deeply invested in its Vive VR platform. The company has touted VR as a potential new growth engine that could even replace smartphones as its core business. HTC put its money where its mouth is with Vive X, a $100 million fund for financing promising VR initiatives. In this context, the move to create VR games in-house, even if they serve a demonstration and reference purpose rather than being real commercial ventures, makes a lot of sense.
Android Authority will be at Computex next week and we’ll definitely keep a virtual eye on HTC’s Front Defense.
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