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Sunday, March 30, 2014

Facebook buys Oculus virtual reality company for $2 billion

 Oculus VR, Inc. was purchased by Facebook for $2 billion on March 25, 2014.

The Oculus rift is an upcoming virtual reality head-mounted display that is still being developed by Oculus VR.

Oculus Rift got its start on Kickstarter (a website where virtual gamers helped raise $2.4 million in exchange for a developer's kit or a free gift from Oculus VR).

The company's co-founder, Palmer Luckey, has recently said last month that he had no intention of selling the company, according to The New York Times. 

"I don't think there's a reasonable number that would make me say, 'You know I was going to change the world with VR and try to change humanity forever but here's a number,'" Mr. Luckey told GamesIndustry International, a gaming industry website, last month. 

Some of those who donated are now branding the virtual reality company as "sellouts," and want a refund.

Donators are not happy that their money is going to Facebook.

The gaming developer community felt that the Oculus Rift company's vision was a new independent platform, but now they feel that it is Facebook's platform.

People thought the virtual reality gaming device would create a new gaming platform, like an alternative to Sony or Microsoft, but they did not think it would include Facebook.

Markus Persson, the creator of the smash hit construction game Minecraft, has backed out of his Oculus Rift plans because Facebook apparently creeps him out.

"We were in talks about maybe bringing a version of Minecraft to Oculus, I just canceled that deal. Facebook creeps me out," said Persson on Twitter, according to Forbes.com.

Reactions have unsurprisingly been negative as the Oculus was supposed to be the future of gaming and now that Facebook has stepped in, everything is ruined!

It is unclear exactly how Facebook will influence the Oculus Rift, but some feel that it will venture to a more mainstream audience given Facebook's history.

To some gamers, the drawbacks of the purchase is that the device's full potential won't live up to the hardcore audience with the impact of Facebook.

People can't help but lose faith on the Oculus with how Facebook deals with user data, personal information, advertisements, and its casual-social games. 

Luckey has defended the sale on Reddit message boards saying that the company would be allowed to operate independently of Facebook and its advertisers, sell its virtual gaming hardware at a cheaper price, and keep the platform open to developers, according to The New York Times.

Mr. Luckey wrote on Reddit that he is 100 percent certain that most will see why this is a good thing in the long term, according toThe New York Times.

According to theverge.com, Facebook will not completely mold the virtual reality company's flagship product into its own image. 

Mr. Luckey has emphasized that the VR company will remain largely independent.

"Mark does believe in our vision of virtual reality, and we're going to continue operating independently, delivering what we've always wanted to deliver," Luckey told The Verge on theverge.com. 

The consumer version of the product is expected (but not confirmed) to become available in late 2014 or early 2015.

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