“An Absolute Labour of Love”: “Seeker VR” is the First Fan-Made Virtual Reality Quidditch Simulator
There’s nothing better than seeing devoted and inspired fans breathing new life into every corner of the world of Harry Potter. It’s always a treat when we come across something unique, fresh, and captivating. An indie game developer, who goes by the screen name Team Eldritch, has created the first-ever unofficial Quidditch virtual reality (VR) video game that’s completely free and accessible to anyone with a VR headset. We got the chance to chat with Team Eldritch about his game, Seeker VR.
The game allows players to see Hogwarts like never before. Hop on your Nimbus 2000 and soar around the grounds, through the castle, and over the lake. If the surprisingly accurate views of the grounds aren’t enough, then try your luck as the Seeker of your House team in a quick game of Quidditch or solo practice.
It took eight months to bring Seeker VR from 1s and 0s to a full-fledged video game. We asked Team Eldritch what it was like to take on this project and if it’s at all tricky to work with VR development.
Yeah, developing for stand[-]alone hardware is hard! The genius of the [Oculus] Quest 2 is that it’s small [and] lightweight and does everything on the headset itself – you don’t need a beefy computer rig to run VR games any more [sic]. But in order to get that weight and cost down, there’s a processing and graphical trade-off… which is fine; you just to have to get creative!
He credits not only his love of Harry Potter but also that he’s“lucky enough to be living in a golden age for game development” that helped make his passion project come to life. Programs like Unreal Engine, which Team Eldritch utilized for Seeker VR, allow programmers and developers of various levels complete free rein to build their worlds.
I can’t stress this enough – I’m entirely self-taught and I didn’t start out as a programmer. If someone like me can go from zero experience to a fully functioning Quidditch game in less than a year, you can do it too!
Through wizard magic and Muggle technology, he says, “You’re unstoppable.”
Since Seeker VR is not officially affiliated with any part of the Harry Potter franchise, Team Eldritch made the game available to everyone who wants to play free of charge. He joked that some people may find it strange to spend eight months of time and effort on something that he can’t turn a profit with. It begs the question, “Why?”
Seeker VR is an absolute labour of love, yeah! My dream job would be working on a Harry Potter game – and I’m fortunate enough to live in a time where the tools are available for me to actually go out and do it! Be the change you want to see in the world, and so on…
He continues to say that the goal of the game wasn’t ever about making money.
I made the game for myself, first and foremost – it was something I’d always wanted to play. Obviously, it’s fan-made, but I didn’t want it to feel amateurish – so everything from the design of the menus to the balls to the voice[-]over got the same obsessive treatment. People are kind; they lower their expectations for fanworks. That’s a gift, because it gives you a real opportunity to exceed them!
Since the release of Seeker VR, the game has been downloaded by more than 10,000 players – all of whom were undoubtedly eager to live out their lifelong dream of catching the Golden Snitch.
You can download Seeker VR free of charge online.