A Post-Mysterium Announcement

It’s been a whirlwind few weeks for the team and we have a lot to share with you. Last weekend we were proud to attend the annual convention of all things Myst, Mysterium, in beautiful St. Louis Missouri, and what a weekend it was. While those who attended catch up on their sleep and recover, we’d like to share some news with those of you who couldn’t make it.

Recordings of the full presentation will be available soon.

That’s right! We’re very excited to finally announce that we are officially developing realRiven for virtual reality. Those of you who’ve been following the project for a while and know our previous stance on VR (best summarised by a casual “VR is cool, but it’s too much work”) may have questions as to what’s changed. Simply, the tools for developing a game in VR have become more ubiquitous and easy to use, and our team now has several members with experience in shipping titles for VR. We have the talent and the technical barriers are no longer an issue, so we’re pleased to make this announcement and we hope you’re as excited as we are.

If you have any questions about our decision to support VR (or anything else, for that matter) feel free to drop by and ask us in our official project Discord server.

Please welcome our new team members!
Amit Arnon, Programmer
Jan Goris, 3D Artist

35 Responses to “A Post-Mysterium Announcement”.

Team members' usernames are in red.
  • The Green Butterfly Says:

    This is going to be truly epic…

  • Mahmtee Says:

    Wow! Great news, can’t wait!!! 😮

  • MusicallyInspired Says:

    Wait, Starry Expanse is officially being called “realRiven” now?

  • zauriel Says:

    Cool. Hopefully by the time realRiven finally gets released, I’ll be able to actually afford a VR system.

  • Dale Jackson Says:

    This is truly amazing!! I loved playing Myst and Riven when it first came out. I was enveloped in those worlds. They were cutting edge and truly unique. Just love what you all are doing, and your dedication to bring this classic back to life with today’s tech.

  • iBookworm Says:

    Yes! Thank you!

  • Albert Thomas Colon Says:

    Its about damn time… lmao. Yes!

  • Floydman Says:

    I am so so so so excited for this. Obduction in VR was super immersive, and I can’t wait to visit Riven in person!

  • Rik Says:

    Wow! This could possibly force me to buy VR stuff.

  • Matthew Barich Says:

    But which VR systems will it support?

    And will it support stereoscopic monitors, such as nVidia 3D Vision?

    There are no standard APIs for VR headsets.

    OpenGL, Direct3D, and Vulkan do have standard support for stereoscopic output, which can be used with any stereoscopic display. It should support that, at a minimum.

  • RIUM+ Says:

    I’m just gonna take a moment to say that I really appreciate that the letters “VR” at the end are in the Riven logo font 😀

  • NM64 Says:

    This is super trivial, but I couldn’t help but notice the judder in the 1st person VR view at the end of the video – perhaps that portion was originally recorded at 30fps but then it was telecine’d down to 25fps?

  • realTony Says:

    It’s not April 1st!!!

  • Brian fredricks Says:

    Great now I HAVE to get a vr

  • James A Lightfoot Says:

    You’ve just made all of my dreams come true x

  • James A Lightfoot Says:

    Please be on oculus as well as vive please oculus

  • Vincent KREBS Says:

    So do you have authorization from Cyan to call the game realRiven ?

  • Graham Says:

    That’s nice and all, but don’t you think you should focus on finishing the main game first? You’ve spent nearly a decade just making this game on its own, and now you’re delaying it even further with features like these.

    • Nick Says:

      Hey Graham,

      The project has been around almost a decade it’s true, but you have to remember that it started as just two college-age guys with very limited game development experience, and it took years to develop into the professional team it is today. Most of the project’s lifespan has been spent slowly developing a team that is able to actually finish a game with such a huge scope. Keep in mind that all of the important progress on the project has happened in the last 2-3 years.

      Regarding VR, there are a few reasons we’re dedicating resources to it. Firstly, it’s something the fans seem to really want (and our project survives on fan goodwill, we’re forever grateful for your support!) Secondly, Cyan themselves are huge proponents of VR technology, and we’d like to foster that shared connection.

      Finally, we think Riven in VR is really, really cool – and it’s our project so we’re going to give it a go!

      Additionally, implementing VR in a game after it’s finished is immensely more difficult than making it in tandem. If VR is inevitable (as we believe it is) then we’re saving time in the long-run!

  • Xenia Says:

    i hope that doesn’t mean VR *only* ? if only for VR many would not be able to play it. for different reasons one being motion sickness that i and many other players suffer from. not to mention powerful PCs that many don’t have. i hope this long wait won’t finish in disappointment for the majority of players who patiently waited for it for literally years. thank you for the consideration.

  • Cathy Gerring Says:

    I actually like the name ‘The Starry Expanse’ more than RealRiven. And almost as much as ‘Riven’.

    • B Says:

      I thought that was just the project name. As a title = No!
      The game is named after a specific place in the game. As such, I can only imagine it ever being called Riven.

      • Tom Says:

        I absolutely despise the current trend of making reboots (usually inferior quality ones, at that) with the exact same name as the original entry in their series, presumably when the original is considered old enough to be forgotten or at least sufficiently uncared-for that they can get away with that sort of mediocrity.

        Starry Expanse Riven, however, is a different case; it’s a faithful remake and not a reboot (thank the Maker), and even though the original is very old now, many still care greatly about it, and in this very special case I might waive my instinctive objection to simply calling the new one “Riven,” but I’d still feel quite strongly that there should be some proper, common way to differentiate it from the original when speaking or writing of it. “realRiven” sadly doesn’t scan very well with the two “Rs,” though, “Riven 2.0” sounds a bit naff (though one could simply call it Riven and put the “2.0” version number very discreetly in the corner of the title art, perhaps a very faint grey font on the black background, or maybe exclusively in the release notes and readme), and that leaves few other options. Maybe, in order to maintain at least some consistency with Cyan’s output, it could be called “Riven Masterpiece Edition?” After all, the work you lot are doing is undoubtedly masterful.

        On reflection, I think the way I would do it would be simply to call it “Riven 2.0” in release notes, possibly interchangeably with “SE Riven” or “Starry Expanse Riven” and other textual or verbal descriptions and, most crucially, for the title art and logos, simply “Riven” but with a somewhat faint D’ni numeral “2” placed tastefully behind or beneath it, rather like the covers of the three hardback books of the novelised inter-game storyline.

        Second preference would probably be “Masterpiece Edition,” again placed with the same unobtrusive faint font and discretion.

        Oh, by the way, what’s the word on VR support on GNU-Linux?

        • Tom Says:

          Above all else, I think we need to avoid ending up in an “The Xbox one is a completely different product to the Xbox One” scenario!

  • realTony Says:

    “Recordings of the full presentation will be available soon.”

    How soon? It’s been a while now!

  • B Says:

    Oh my god, that’s fantastic!
    Getting all jittery with excitement!

  • Gregory Says:

    What did cyan show at mysterium ? They were teasing something on YouTube but I could never find out what it was.

  • Nintendo Maniac 64 Says:

    I just wanted to say, I think it’s a bit amusing that I made a partially tongue-in-cheek comment in the Twitch chat after the livestream about real-time raytracing on Imagination mobile GPUs with regards to this projects graphical fidelity, and then of course Nvidia reveals that they’ve gone “all in” on real-time raytracing for their future GPU plans.

    Sooo…raytraced RealRiven when? 😛 (much like my comments on Twitch regarding raytracing, the entire following comment is only half-serious – I’d love to see the raytracing happen, but I know better than to actually expect it to happen).

    One key point is that raytracing is easier for the graphics devoloper and 3D artist to implement than all the faked lighting effects via rasterization, and I know that you guys could certainly use all the help you could get in that department. Heck, it’s even my impression that high polygon counts (key for replicating Riven’s rounded objects) cause less of a performance impact with raytracing than they do with rasterization.

    I mean, at the current rate of development, I wouldn’t be surprised we’ll have had raytracing-accelerated GPUs available for several generations on even AMD and Intel integrated GPUs by the time “realRiven” is actually finished.

    Besides, didn’t the original Riven use raytracing of some sort? 😛

  • Laure Says:

    Do you already know when it will be released?

  • Flake Says:

    Update please.
    Thanks. 🙂

  • Michael MacDonald Says:

    Oh my god. Riven in VR? Yes please!

Leave a Reply