Darth Vader will star in a new episodic series of Star Wars virtual reality experiences, Vader Immortal, for Oculus’ new all-in-one stand-alone headset, the Oculus Quest. Oculus and Lucasfilm’s ILMxLAB announced the new series today during the Oculus Connect keynote.
Vader Immortal: A Star Wars VR Series will span three episodes. The teaser trailer for Episode I of that series doesn’t reveal much, but players will visit Vader’s castle on Mustafar, the volcanic planet featured in Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story. Players will also apparently wield a lightsaber and do battle (or train with) a droid.
Oculus’ announcement says that players will “step inside the Star Wars universe and interact with one of the most iconic villains of all time” in Vader Immortal. The VR series will tell an as-yet untold story in the Star Wars universe, one that will be set during the time period between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope.
Writer and executive producer David S. Goyer (Blade, Batman Begins) is developing Vader Immortal with Lucasfilm’s ILMxLAB and Hellblade studio Ninja Theory. The series (or at least its first episode) will be one of 50 titles expected to be available when the Oculus Quest launches next spring.
“The very initial conversations around this project started three years ago, around the launch of ILMxLAB,” Mohen Leo, director of immersive content at ILMxLAB, told StarWars.com. “Lucasfilm was in production on Rogue One. In the film, the audience gets a glimpse of Darth Vader’s castle on Mustafar, which we knew would be intriguing to a lot of fans. This was also around the time that some of the first really compelling content for the Oculus DK2, the developer kit that preceded the Oculus Rift, came out. We recognized that VR has a unique ability to transport people to a fictional place and let them explore it. So, we thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be cool to let the audience visit and explore Vader’s castle, and have the opportunity to learn some of his secrets?’”
ILMxLAB, Lucasfilm’s “laboratory for immersive entertainment,” previously developed virtual reality experiences Trials on Tatooine and the location-based Secrets of the Empire.
Correction: A previous version of this post referred to Vader Immortal as a virtual reality game, but representatives for ILMxLAB stressed in an email to Polygon that the title will not be a game, but a “VR story series.” This post has been updated to remove references to Vader Immortal as a game.