Palmer Luckey revealed that he is making an unusual VR device called OQPNVG. Inspired by popular novels and anime works, it is said to be a VR device based on the idea that if you die virtually, you die in reality too.
Luckey is the co-founder of Oculus VR and the designer of the Oculus Rift. Oculus is also the predecessor of the Meta Quest series, a VR device developed by Meta. After launching Oculus VR, he launched a Kickstarter campaign for Oculus Rift. The VR headset came out in the world and became a hot topic worldwide and the beginning of the spread of VR. Facebook acquired Oculus VR in 2014. Now rebranded as Oculus, it is the VR division of Facebook Technologies, a subsidiary of Meta. Luckey left the company to start another company, Andruril Industries.
Luckey introduced that November 6, 2022, was the day when the “SAO Incident” occurred. The SAO Incident is the fictional incident in Sword Art Online, the anime. The opening of the so-called death game has been declared, where if you die in the game, your real body also dies. This is called the SAO incident at work. Luckey announced the murder VR device named after the same work on the day of the SAO incident.
The VR device in the works is equipped with a microwave generator with enough power to kill the wearer. In his blog, Luckey mentioned the mechanism of NerveGear, the VR device in “Sword Art Online”. He says it would take an incredible amount of time to fully recreate the mechanism of NerveGear without the need for bulky equipment. It would be extremely difficult to replicate with modern technology.
Nevertheless, Luckey devised a method to recreate NerveGear’s mechanism compactly by using three explosive modules. A narrow band light sensor detects when the screen flashes red with the light of a specific frequency. The explosive explodes, and the user’s brain is instantly destroyed.
But Luckey doesn’t think the system is perfect. It is said that installing functions to prevent headset removal and disabling the kill function, like the original Nerve Gear, is being considered. But even if such a feature is implemented, various glitches could cause users to die accidentally. As for game over, he believes a highly intelligent program like NerveGear should judge it.
Luckey announced a murder VR device on the “SAO Incident” day, probably because of his affection for “Sword Art Online”. He also said that OQPNVG is just art to decorate his office. There is no plan to put it into practical use, for the time being, so please rest assured.
To his knowledge, Luckey claims that OQPNVG is the first example of recreating a VR device that can kill a user. However, he left a comment at the end of his blog, saying, “It won’t be the last.” I’m not sure if this statement is serious or a joke.
As for those who haven’t watched Sword Art Online(SAO) yet, do watch it. It is really good.