Starburst opens Juicyverse experience in metaverse mall

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    Starburst launched the Juicyverse experience inside the Metaverse mall known as TheMall. It can be accessed from any device on the web.

    Starburst Juicyverse allows people to visit virtual malls and engage in virtual entertainment using MetaVRse engine 2.0. It allows people to connect from any device through a web browser.

    Alan Smithson and Julie Smithson MetaVRse The company has been working on TheMall for eight years, but its most recent work on the mall’s core infrastructure took place in the past year. It’s been open for a week or so and it’s barely advertised.

    The first major brand partner was Mars Wrigley, which launched Starburst Juicyverse on the second floor of the mall. In an interview with GamesBeat, Alan Smithson said his company wants to build a 100-story mall with about 1 million square feet of space on each floor.

    What it’s like in Juicyverse

    Juicyverse lets you listen to music.

    Juicyverse features a virtual Starburst store that guides guests into the virtual experience with a QR code. I’ve been through that experience with Alan Smithson. I logged in from my desktop computer and joined the experience in about 30 seconds. No download was required. I had to opt-in a few things, register an avatar name, and create an avatar, which took another minute or so.

    Next, we entered the spinning vortex and visited the Starburst Juicyverse. Once inside, we walked around the experience using a keyboard and mouse. The walls had animations running and the Juicyverse logo. Visitors can collect a free virtual Starburst T-shirt to wear on their avatar. I chose a red shirt for my avatar, which ended up matching Alan Smithson’s outfit.

    Of the 3 available experiences, we went first to the Starcade experience on the left. It was a kind of disco with music playing from buttons on the walls. You can go to the photo booth and take pictures. Mobile allows you to share images via social.

    You can then participate in a 3D scavenger hunt for Loyalty Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs). When you get it, it’s a coupon for instant discounts that you can use to buy candy at brick-and-mortar stores, including Walmart. NFTs are minted on the Hedera blockchain.

    Alan Smithson said that MetaVRse Engine 2.0 renders 3D objects with higher quality than before, but he felt it was a bit slow. The goal is to bring visitors through his QR code in the real world and bring millions of guests into the experience on any device.

    Access your NFTs via Apple or Google Wallet using BambuMeta’s NFT system. Guests can earn loyalty NFTs via a wallet they already own and trust on their phone. MetaVRse tried out the experience at the “South by Southwest” event in Austin, Texas in March and is now opening it on his second floor in the mall.

    “Your mobile wallet has the world’s first IRL coupons from NFT,” he said. “We think this is the next level for loyalty programs.”

    For the next part of the experience, we entered the gallery. There is a game called Lost in Space where you try to find missing aliens, ducks, and various other objects in the sea of ​​asteroids. Navigation was a little slow, so we withdrew.

    In addition to the above, Juicyverse has a studio feature that allows creators to build their own 3D models out of starburst candies in a 20x20x20 space. In this experience, you place blocks like Lego and use your mouse to change the direction of the line. It’s like sketching in 3D.

    Once you’ve finished creating it, you can share it as your own user-generated content. Alan Smithson hopes Starburst Juicyverse will break new ground in the world of marketing and retail. Art contest winners will receive prizes. And the winner can have their art minted as an NFT. Alan Smithson said he spent four hours building a Star Wars tie fighter.

    Taking a spot at TheMall

    TheMall lets you customize your virtual space.
    TheMall lets you customize your virtual space.

    The ground floor of the mall will consist of various corporate stores, while the floor above will be a custom metaverse experience owned by the brand. Alan Smithson said asking for registration just before entering the experience would likely result in a significant drop, so it’s likely that floors will be accessible without pre-registration.

    “By the time we open the first floor of the mall, we will address this issue,” he said. “I think it makes sense for people to try it first, so we’re going to let people take a walk around before signing up.

    The company sold the first five floors for about $250,000 each. This gave the company the funding to get off the ground. Ultimately, each floor costs about $1 million for his million square feet, while Starburst activation uses about 200,000 square feet of virtual space. You can also lease a small store for an annual fee.

    How will it pass?

    When Alan Smithson announced the project a year ago, TheMall’s project came at the height of the Metaverse boom, with consultants predicting the market would be worth trillions of dollars. Since then, however, the cryptocurrency market has crashed several times and an economic downturn has taken hold. Scams around the metaverse and blockchain have been highlighted and some people have lost interest in the idea.

    TheMall project itself raised eyebrows and caused some laughter from those who wondered how they could trick people into paying $1 million for an infinitely replicable virtual estate. Fault finders said they made the mistake of importing shopping experiences from the physical world and recreating them in the digital world, even though what’s fun in the real world isn’t necessarily fun in the digital world. rice field.

    NFTs and the Metaverse have taken a beating lately, with an insider recently proclaiming “the Metaverse is dead.” That’s a matter of debate, but Alan Smithson says he intends to address the issue in the long run.

    “We’ve been focused on getting the first few brands,” Smithson said. “We see this as a way to fund this infinite virtual world. We are not very interested in quick money. is not trying to inflate the price of coins or anything like that.It will be a loyalty program, not a cryptocurrency.We didn’t spend seven years building anything to trick people.

    As it stands, it wasn’t all that impressive in terms of the Metaverse experience, but we should see a better experience in the aging Second Life virtual world. The avatars are lifeless, the experience is very simple, and the movement is rather slow.

    Hardcore gamers like me aren’t going to spend much time here. But the question is whether the experience will one day be so great that he’d rather spend his time here than

    It was interesting to be able to access everything via a web browser without requiring lengthy downloads. The question is whether technology will advance rapidly enough to make shopping at virtual malls a smooth and seamless experience. That might work for casual people.

    Alan Smithson believes in it.

    “Remember, this is just running in your browser, it runs the same on all devices,” said Alan Smithson.

    He added, “To the critics who say shopping in digital malls is not fun, I want to say they are right. E-commerce platforms today are not shopping. No one says, ‘Let’s go shopping on Amazon together.

    Smithson said he is looking to build a new type of social retail where billions of gamers around the world can virtually come together and explore brands.

    “We are working closely with brands to make this more than just an e-commerce website, but rather an experience center for social enjoyment and exploration,” Smithson said. “I have to agree that spending money on virtual real estate is probably stupid if you are not a big brand or investor who has the money to invest in building something of value for your guests. , which is why we only sell TheMall properties to accredited investors and authentic brands.”

    Building TheMall

    Alan Smithson's avatar in Juicyverse.
    Alan Smithson’s avatar in Juicyverse.

    By combining the physical and virtual worlds, brands are now able to create immersive experiences that engage customers in more meaningful ways. The use of blockchain technology in this activation not only provides a safe and transparent way to manage loyalty programs, but also opens up new revenue streams through the creation and sale of NFTs, he said. Stated.

    TheMall is built on MetaVRse Engine 2.0, a low-code 3D creation platform on the web. Alan Smithson said being able to offer his 3D multiplayer virtual world experience seamlessly across all devices without the need to download an app is a game changer.

    This accessibility allows brands to connect with consumers on a global scale without requiring technical expertise on the part of consumers.

    Eventually, visitors will be able to create their own private rooms and send each other links to video chat. However, you cannot communicate with other avatars in the main Juicyverse. This is acknowledging the reliability and safety issues of the metaverse experience.

    TheMall launch will enable multiple brand partners to work together to create an interconnected virtual shopping experience. worked with Starburst and Mars, as well as The Mars Agency, BambuMeta and Hedera.

    The mall accepts fiat (USD) payments as well as cryptocurrencies and is Khronos 3D compliant. It connects to backend systems and features real-time analytics and photorealistic graphics.

    Over time, TheMall will host concerts, comedy shows, clubs, billboards, conventions, influencer drops and more.

    Alan Smithson said the company is working on a deal to bring 1,400 brands to the mall. Building an experience takes time, so you won’t get it all at once. The company has about six different templates that brands can use. The company has already built an electronics store. There will also be virtual car configurations and medical device simulators.

    “It’s so, so bad,” he said. “You will love it.”

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