VRChat is one of the most popular social VR applications out there, and Chief Creator Officer Ron Millar recently told me that they had over 18,000 concurrent users this past weekend. I had a chance to catch up with the co-founders Jesse Joudrey & Graham Gaylor at Oculus Connect 6 back in September 2019, soon after they had announced a Series C fundraising round of $10 million.
VRChat’s SDK integrates with Unity, and so they’re leveraging the power of the game engine to enable the creativity of users to generate worlds and avatars. At the time of this interview, they had hundreds of thousands of worlds and over 5 million avatars. They talk about how they manage moderation through community labs moderation as well as a trust system that helps them identify potentially problematic creators. At the time of this recording, they were still working on the visual scripting language of Udon, which was just released on April 1, 2020. They’re hoping that Udon will make it easier to make interactive content for their user base. On March 17th, 2020, they released a sheltered at home guide for how VRChat could be used to stay connected in the midst of a global pandemic.
I’ve consistently had check-ins with the leaders and employees of VRChat over the past 6 years starting back in 2014 in episode #31, #172 in 2015, #318 in 2016, #566 in 2017, and #636 in 2018. This is my 2019 check-in, and there’s already a lot that has been rapidly changing as VRChat moves quickly and has been seeing a lot of interest in using virtual spaces to gather and connect with each other. I’m looking forward to checking in again, and I may be updating this post if I receive some more usage statistics and information from the VRChat team.
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