Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

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Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Following on from our original FAQs for Viveport Arcade, which were mostly aimed at potential developers, this FAQ is from an operator perspective. If you are a potential operator and have more questions, feel free to ask them below!

 

What is the Viveport Arcade program?

 

The Viveport Arcade program is HTC’s location-based entertainment initiative where Viveport content is provided to third-party physical locations such as arcades, internet cafes, theaters and shopping malls via an end-to-end content management and distribution platform.

Where is the Program available?

 

The Viveport Arcade program is currently running pilot programs and will be officially launching first in China in 2016 and rolling out to operators globally in 2017. We see this as a global opportunity and are talking with operators all over the world about the program.

I am an operator, how can I learn more about the program?

 

An operator interested in the Viveport Arcade program content management and distribution system may contact us at directly at www.viveportvrarcade.com. As more details become available for operators, we will be posting them to the community forum (here!).

Which model of the HTC Vive do I use for the operation of a location?

 

Operators should use the Vive Business Edition. Commercial operators interested in purchasing hardware for their locations, can learn more about the Vive Business Edition which provides dedicated support and a special business warranty at http://www.vive.com/us/enterprise 

What are the benefits to an operator for the Viveport Arcade program?


The Viveport Arcade program is an end-to-end platform solution for many commercial operators looking to have an efficient software solution that is both an operating system and one-stop for content distribution. Viveport Arcade works directly with developers to secure their content for location-based initiatives; therefore, operators can access multiple apps from one source rather than spend time independently negotiating with individual VR developers.

What is the business model for operators?

 

Viveport Arcade is based on a pay-by-time model where operators pre-purchase points direct from HTC based on a certain amount of time (e.g. 1min=Y points, Y points = $X dollars). Through the Viveport Arcade platform, HTC accurately tracks usage of each VR app and in turn shares the pre-paid point value with the developer. As an operator, the retail price chosen is at the operator's discretion. We will be providing more insight as to the pre-paid points plan shortly.

What content is available to me as an operator?

 

The Viveport Arcade program continues to add to its portfolio of VR games and apps suitable for location-based entertainment. This portfolio will be offered to operators to choose from for their locations. The availability of content may range depending on certain territories and rights. Operators may select a la carte or from recommended lists curated by HTC.

I have direct deals with certain developers or want to pursue deals independently, how does that affect using Viveport Arcade?


Viveport Arcade is meant as efficient solution for both operators and developers to mitigate having to independently negotiate hundreds of deals and to establish a transparent payment and reporting system for both sides. If in certain cases there are pre-existing arrangements between operator and developer, we respect those partnerships and an operator may simply choose to not select that specific title from the Viveport Arcade portfolio if also available. Viveport Arcade will not be responsible for the deal terms made independently of the Viveport Arcade program; however, we will work with the operator to ensure integration if using the platform UI. If there is a title not apparent on the available titles, operators may inquire directly to the Viveport Arcade team for potential support in securing the title.

Do I need to sign up for the Steam Site Licensing Program?

 

No. The Viveport Arcade program is independent of the Steam program.

I’ve heard of VIVELAND™, what is that? Are you franchising?

 

Viveland™ is HTC’s showcase for a dedicated VR amusement center, featuring immersive VR stations that include full-motion simulation cabinets where consumers can experience more than 20 popular game, exploration and simulation apps. There are limited showrooms at this time and we are not franchising. The Viveport Arcade program is a separate initiative with third-parties.

73 REPLIES
GrimGreener
Builder

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Hi Stephen.. A good summary.

My aaargh moment was Vive business edition. I already own 5 x Consumer Edition (CE) Vives on the basis I could have 5 CE including 2 spare controllers and 5 pairs of face cushions and noses for the price of 4xBusiness Edition and not worry about support. If one breaks.. my problem. Having a warranty wont stop them breaking. Its downtime waiting for support / replacements that is going to cost me more than just ordering another for spares.

Someone needs to convince me / upsell to BE. The neoprene head straps dont make it worth my while as I'm having my own made Smiley Wink

If I can be convinced...will there be an upgrade path for CE to BE? I think most people interested have bought 1 or 2 CE already.

If HTC could tell me the controllers were made of (harder to break) carbon fibre instead of plastic and the inners are sealed in gel for shock proofng I'd understand the price difference, but at the moment it seems the extra is for a blue camera surround, a neoprene headstrap, and access to a phone support which may be better than what consumers are getting, plus knowing you MAY get stuff replaced under warranty if it meets the T&Cs. The trouble for me is.. would I prefer buy 4 get 1 free or some extra support? As I'm hoping to own 16+ by end of Q2 2017 you can guess what I think currently!

Edit... having just read the BE T&Cs again I remember why I didnt bother. It doesnt cover damage caused by users anyway.. which is the thing most likely to happen when controllers inevitably get dropped or smashed into things. Best to keep a healthy supply of controllers and have them charging ready to repair when the batteries run out half way thru the day.
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Simon Heath. Founder of theVRhub
Ctrlvr
Explorer

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Same here - all mine are consumer edition Vives I'm beginning to think there is a conspiracy to price out small VR businesses before they've even begun.  Steamvr have now ruined their paid subscription program (updated) by encouraging developers to charge wayyy to much. If I wanted 10-15 popular VR games it could cost me anywhere between £300-£500 per seat per month × 5 seats £1500-£2500 per months. Premises rent £100 per month; business rates/bills £1000 per month - steamvr want up to £2500 per month I will be charging £10-12 per hour as where I live people won't/can't afford to pay anymore. The Vive experience is good but it's not mind blowing amazing where we can charge whatever. I'm banking on Viveport now to be sensible about pricing otherwise HTC may find loads of little vr arcades will be out of business quick.
Ctrlvr
Explorer

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Just want to add it says 'should' doesn't say you 'have' to and even I don't think it can be forced upon us anyway - 

GrimGreener
Builder

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Should would could. lol.

I just sent a 3 page essay to Steam explaining why seat licensing doesn't work as a model in arcades. You dont have 1 guy using a tool like Adobe creative suite 8 hours a day. You've currently got a choice of 31 titles to license which if i stuck all of them on all my rigs would cost wait for it.. SIX THOUSAND THREE HUNDRED POUNDS A MONTH. ROFL... Smiley Sad
Imagine if they make all several hundred VR titles available on the site programme. Do they want £7k per month per PC?
Ps.. this is a Steam issue not HTC or Vive issue. I pointed out HTC's Viveport will be my preferred licensing platform unless they can come up with a model that allows me to make software available to customers but I only pay if its used. Otherwise about 20 of the titles in ther libary wont get licensed by me ... not even at £1/month as no one will play them in preference to the other titles.

Dont mention Tiltbrush. I may go Thermonuclear, Lol.
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Simon Heath. Founder of theVRhub
Ctrlvr
Explorer

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Google Earth is out - I've made my feeling clear about charging for that as an extension to someone else asking about licencing on the Google forums - put it this way; I'm not happy Smiley Happy lol

If they charge I want royalties for my house being in the program!

 

If viveport get the big hitter games on to their platform then I'll join them.

 

Who did you write to at steam? I haven't got around to making a Facebook account yet - BTW. I'm still trying to get my blood pressure after reading most of my games I had permission for have joined the site subscription list. At least I can now give my real opinion on some of the games Smiley Happy

GrimGreener
Builder

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

cybercafes@valvesoftware.com. Got the address from one of the developers who I'd got an agreement with prior to the new site programme. Sent you an email with a copy of the mail (and some top secret business info lol) but I'd suggest anyone else following this thread mails in their own Ideas on how licensing should work as I dont have a monopoly on good ideas. Bear in mind theres 3 groups of people need to make money... site operators, content distributors and developers.
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Simon Heath. Founder of theVRhub
Community

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs


GrimGreener wrote:

I just sent a 3 page essay to Steam explaining why seat licensing doesn't work as a model in arcades. You dont have 1 guy using a tool like Adobe creative suite 8 hours a day. You've currently got a choice of 31 titles to license which if i stuck all of them on all my rigs would cost wait for it.. SIX THOUSAND THREE HUNDRED POUNDS A MONTH. ROFL... Smiley Sad
Imagine if they make all several hundred VR titles available on the site programme. Do they want £7k per month per PC?

@GrimGreener is that pricing model accurate? That seems insane. Can you point me to where you're getting this info? I have no further info on our pricing but as we say above, we're talking about a price-per-minute scheme where you buy time from HTC, then you re-sell the time (effectively) to customers... not a per-seat model.

 

Out of interest what do you (and @Ctrlvr) think are the 'must-have' games for an arcade setup?

 

Also one of you needs to pick a different avatar, you're confusing me. Smiley Very Happy

JamieIrl
Explorer

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Id say hes getting it from the steam licencing program. Tilt brush and a few others are 55 euro a month per seat, some are lower. if you create a new steam account and convert it to a steamworks account you can see the pricing.

 

For me i think raw data is a must have because they're making a 4-player arcade version but thats $125 P/M per seat alone, add in a few more games and its not sustainable. The sooner htc come out with this the better Smiley Happy

 

 

GrimGreener
Builder

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Well I've written to Steam to query it... but yes it appears if you want to license all titles on all machines you own you'll be looking at thousands per month.
You only see the pricing if you are signed up on their site licensing programme. Each title then displays its commercial fee ... with prices in the range £3 - £45 per month. So if you have 10 PCs and want customers to be able to play any of the 30 odd titles thats 30 titles x £20ish (average) x 10 PCs = £6000. Dont think they though it through. Now imagine that with 100 titles available. The only option is not to license all titles on all PCs. Which isnt ideal for customers or developers or steam or operators. Hope they respond as we .. ie those wanting to get this industry off the ground, have to work together to make it happen.
Ps... Avatar changed.. typical day on my spare bedroom floor Smiley Wink
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Simon Heath. Founder of theVRhub
GrimGreener
Builder

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Regarding per minute pricing... things get interesting for developers if they have a hit title...
Say it ends up at 0.03 per minute average (cost not customer price) on these pre pay minutes ... with some costing more or less..
thats 1.80 per hour.
14.40/day @ 8 hours a day (if its really popular)
72/week @ 5 days a week (mon tue closed!)
302/month @ 4.2 weeks a month
x 10 PC = £3200 Month.
As a site operator I dont have a problem paying that if indeed my customers are going crazy for a new game and I've got 10 in use 8 hours a day .. i might even open monday and tuesday.
But it also means an older title can bag the occasional 1.80/hr if someone comes into play. Better still... if its a multiplayer game that might bag the dev £18. x 1000s of arcades its easy to see even small indie devs earning enough to pay the rent from 1 or 2 plays per month in each arcade.. while hoping for a ferrari. Added to their revenue from constantly increasing hardware sales and owners picking up back catalougue... makes me wonder if im at the wrong end of the business... lol.
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Simon Heath. Founder of theVRhub
Community

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

@GrimGreener yeah we certainly see Arcades as a potentially excellent revenue generator. I mean, there's a reason why arcades were a big business 'back in the day'.

 

Brings to mind that story, possibly apocryphal, about an arcade operator complaining that their machine wasn't working (might have been Pac-Man). When they took it in for repair, turns out it was jammed with quarters...!

 

Just to be clear to anyone reading - because I misread your post at first, @GrimGreener - the pricing he's quoting below is for developer revenue (and is plucked from thin air). Just want to reiterate, for a potential operator, you pre-pay for minutes of Viveport Arcade usage... which only gets used up as it's used by customers. Smiley Happy

GrimGreener
Builder

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

Indeed... maybe its time to go offline.. and private as its quite easy for someone to take this out of context. Is there anything meant to have gone out from Viveport arcade registration of interest yet? I've not heard anything... even a thank you for registering well be back to you in a couple of months.. you know to confirm our details are in the mail list.
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Simon Heath. Founder of theVRhub
Ctrlvr
Explorer

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

At last - I can post correctly! Using a laptop now as my tablet doesn't play nice with this site. Earlier on I said I'd be paying £100pm rent - I wish, and it was a typo: £800pm.

 

The developers/publishers of 'theBlu' charge 8.1p (GBP) per minute - that's £4.86 per hour using their system; I'll be charging £10-£12 per hour per PC. After paying 'theBlu that leaves me £5.14 and out of that comes rent/business rates/insurance/electric/internet/website/insurance/wage/income tax/national insurance/re-investment into VR equipment to either maintain them or to keep up to date with equipment and finally lots of other little things such as VR hygienic wipes etc...

 

I think the mid-long term chargeable market price for my sort of "walk in" - "high street" arcade setup is £10 -£12 per hour - much more than that and I go bust! My format is like a traditional arcade - a shop open to the public; walk in; make a booking; if a slot is free you can take it there and then. My target customer is college/university students and anyone of working age - after trying the Vive once or twice, I don't think people will pay much more than £10-£12 per hour for the experience - HTC need to price accordingly and perhaps not get to carried away thinking they've reinvented the wheel. I say all this with regards to pricing as a parent of 3 with 2 of them being in college and University, and the other in comprehensive school - this is my own opinion as to what I think people in those age groups can easily afford. In addition, most people I have spoke with (university research) were happy to pay £6 for 30 mins - hence why I'm going for £10 per hour or £6 for 30 mins. Remember this isn't like the old days - people have higher disposable income - if we charge to much; and they like the Vive, they'll do their darnest to buy one for themselves! Doing that means they can save their game progress and purchase great games that could well be cheaper than hiring my Vives for an hour. I also think HTC should give consideration to the fact that operators like us are not just creating wealth for HTC, the developer/publisher and myself - essentially we're also demoing the Vive for HTC and indirectly pushing sales for HTC. However, I do think the way Viveport Arcade way of pricing by the minute is a a better way than the Steam alternative way.

 

 

 

 

Ctrlvr
Explorer

Re: Viveport Arcade: Operator FAQs

@GrimGreener - Great letter and I agree with all of it.

 

@Rockjaw With regards to games - someone mentioned you have Raw Data, Space Pirate Trainer and Brookhaven experiment coming over to Viveport - they're more like it!  Maybe try and get Serious Sam Vr and Audioshield. There are others good games you could go requesting but I already have my own agreements with one or two of them (MI5 top secret).

 

What I would like is an overlay built into Viveport Arcade where a user could select their Steam games such as 'The Lab' from within Viveport Arcade - something like that would be very handy as the idea of a user switching between Steam and Viveport - back and fore - isn't great, and let's be honest, everyone loves the Lab's archery game - well I do anyway!

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