Google Cloud Platform, Improbable Partnership Builds VR Game Network

Imagine a virtual world that lives on. The Google partnership with Improbable, an Andreessen Horowitz London-backed startup, could make that a reality through a platform where developers can create virtual reality worlds. The Mountain View, California company plans to support the relationship with its Cloud Platform.

The two will subsidize access to "qualified developers" under the SpatialOS Games Innovation Program, which Improbable launched Tuesday. Now game developers are eligible for services and credits they can use to pay for SpatialOS use fees as they create, test and launch game titles.

"We have been dreaming about what happens when we let games move beyond the constraints of a single game engine and server," wrote Herman Narula, CEO and Cofounder of Improbable, in a post that explains how the company wants to help developers push the boundaries of games.

Narula explains in the post how the company is working with Google and other partners to integrate services directly into SpatialOS.

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"Imagine a virtual city populated by players, who can make lasting changes to its social structure or its economy through their actions,” Narula wrote. "Or a battle between thousands of players, played out in real time over days or weeks. These are possibilities that demand a totally different approach."

The draw is that developers can build simulated environments to accommodate thousands of players and tap into technology that could expand capabilities within the platform using the Google Cloud Platform to support processing power. It powers SpatialOS, allowing the company to build out its cloud services for game developers, similar to the tests run with Pokemon Go.  

The partnership between Google and Improbable allows any game developer to gain access to the SpatialOS platform and development tools, and to test and experiment with it ahead of the full launch of the Games Innovation Program and the beta of SpatialOS in Q1 2017.

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