As England rugby sponsor, O2 has created a fully immersive experience that lets Oculus Rift wearers virtually train with the England team.
Its Wear the Rose video was filmed using nine GoPro Hero 3 cameras with custom-built gimbals strapped to players while training. After 160 hours of filming and 320 hours of development, the full 360-degree virtual participation was ready.
The result is an Oculus Rift experience that lets users feel they're getting tackled by hooker Tom Youngs, or receiving a pass from fullback Mike Brown. But without the pain.
This is a prototype experience at the moment but shows the huge potential of Oculus Rift, both for gaming and for training simulators in the future.
Wear the Rose has been created to coincide with the Six Nations. Nina Bibby, marketing and consumer director at O2, says: "We’ll transport you into the virtual rugby boots of the England squad, taking in the heart-pounding action of a full training session. This exciting technology really has to be experienced to be believed and we’re looking forward to bringing it to rugby fans across the UK this year."
For now we'll have to settle for the demo video, but it sounds like O2 will be making Wear the Rose available to the public this year. We've contacted O2 to find out more.