I JUST went on a holiday to the beach AND the mountains – without leaving my house.
Turns out that going on vacation in the metaverse has its perks.
For a start, I didn’t need to pack, find my passport or rush to an airport.
I simply donned the Meta Quest 2 – Mark Zuckerberg’s increasingly popular virtual reality metaverse headset.
After a few minutes, I had installed and loaded up a VR app called Vacation Simulator.
It’s a sequel to the immensely popular (and surprisingly hilarious) Job Simulator.
The premise is that we’re in a future world where robots have replaced human jobs.
So you can use the Job Simulator to experience what it was once like to work – in an office, or as a mechanic, or in a car.
Vacation Simulator is the obvious follow-on: experience how humans of the past (ie today) would spend their time when “not jobbing”.
My holiday began at a hotel, where I was greeted by a floating robot who helped me get oriented.
She guided me into the bathroom, where I was able to sort my hair out, trim the old beard, and give myself a bleach-blonde job. Lovely stuff.
And then just like on proper hols, I went straight for the hotel bed for a lie down.
The bed was very spacious and comfortable – probably because in reality, I was flat on the floor on my living room rug.
My virtual room had a basketball in it, so I stood up again to shoot some hoops. The physics are spot-on (so I was understandably rubbish) but I did manage to get a few in.
Fatigued by my meters sportsmanship, I grabbed a virtual juice from my e-fridge.
It didn’t taste of much (or rather, of anything), but the glugging noises from the headset were oddly quenching.
Next I popped over to the TV, put a cartridge in a console, grabbed a virtual joystick and began playing a text adventure game about going on holiday.
The irony was not lost on me.
I also tried another cartridge that loaded a Mario-style side-scrolling platformer.
For a brief moment while playing on the virtual TV, I actually forgot none of this was real.
Anyway, it was good fun – so who cares?
It was at this point that I realized I hadn’t actually left the hotel room. Whoops!
So I went outside to the beach, where I lay on the sand for a bit and read a book about coconuts.
I popped into the sea for a quick dip, and even dunked my head.
The audio changed and I felt immersed in the underwater world. I even grabbed a shell as a souvenir.
It’s still in my virtual backpack, waiting for me in Zuckerberg’s digital realm.
I grabbed a sun hat from the beach store because I’m not entirely convinced I can’t sunburn in virtual reality.
And then I decided it was time for a change of scenery.
The fun never stops … until it does
Next stop was Vacation Island’s mountain resort.
It was a lot colder, so I didn’t plan on hanging around for long – but I did manage to find a hot tub.
I’m told by a robot that I can experience the stunning overlook once I “collect more memories” – the game’s currency – to unlock the area.
Alas I didn’t fancy working on my vacation, so I went back to the hotel and decided that was enough holidaying for one day.
I was surprised by how much fun my virtual holiday was.
And there’s so much more to do in this strange meta-world that I’m itching to go back.
The big advantage is that my virtual vacation was significantly cheaper than a real one.
And it’s a quick way to get a taste of a holiday if you don’t have one on the horizon.
But really, all my virtual vacation did was make me desperately want a real one even more.
Maybe the metaverse won’t replace reality after all.
You can buy Vacation Simulator through the Meta / Oculus Store for £ 22.99 / $ 29.99.
- Meta Quest 2 at Best Buy for $ 299 – buy here
- Meta Quest 2 at Currys for 299 – buy here
If you click on a link in this story we may earn affiliate revenue.
Best Phone and Gadget tips and hacks
Looking for tips and hacks for your phone? Want to find those secret features within social media apps? We have you covered …
We pay for your stories! Do you have a story for The Sun Online Tech & Science team? Email us at email@example.com