HTC revealed the panel of judges that will help decide who wins the first Viveport Developer Awards (VDAs) in January 2017. The company also said that it added a new Community Choice Award that will allow Viveport users to vote on their favorite VR experience from among the 20 nominated titles.
Viveport is HTC's marketplace for the Vive HMD. It debuted in September with discounts for games, apps, and other VR experiences, as well as timed exclusives called Viveport Premieres. The company also released a version of the platform made for mobile VR users, Viveport M, but it's currently limited to Android smartphone owners who live in China. The Vive HMD got HTC into the VR hardware market; Viveport will do the same for software.
Here's the full list of judges in the VDAs:
Two Bit Circus CEO Brent BushnellTechnicolor Experience Center head and Immersive Media SVP Marcie JastrowVideo Game Awards executive producer Geoff KeighleyYouTube VR content creator Nathaniël de JongRajeev Pureen, Business Development - Commercial VR, IntelRick and Morty writer, animator, and co-creator Justin RoilandTribe of Good founder Taryn SouthernReggie Watts, Comedian/Musician CBS' The Late Late Show with James Corden and Netflix's SPATIAL
Many of those names should be familiar to VR enthusiasts. Watts introduced AltspaceVR's FrontRow service with a live performance, and Roiland jumped into VR game development by founding Squanchtendo. Tribe of Good, Immersive Media, and Two Bit Circus all focus on VR experiences, and VR is likely to become a big part of the Video Game Awards, too.
Viveport users have until December 18 to vote on the Community Choice Award on the service's forums. Among the nominees are Cloudlands: VR Minigolf, Mars Odyssey, and others. The VDAs include four categories--discover, create, connect, watch--in addition to the Community Choice Award. The grand prize winner will receive an estimated $500,000 in cash and prizes; the Community Choice Award offers another $10,000 to its recipient.
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Nathaniel Mott is a freelance news and features writer for Tom's Hardware US, covering breaking news, security, and the silliest aspects of the tech industry.