Versions is the essential guide to virtual reality and beyond. It investigates the rapidly deteriorating boundary between the real world and the one behind the screen. Versions launched in 2016 at the eponymous conference dedicated to creativity and VR with the New Museum’s incubator NEW INC.

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All is well, now that you can pet a Pikachu in virtual reality

All is well, now that you can pet a Pikachu in virtual reality

My poor Popplio just underwent a rough battle in Pokémon Sun; the poor water creature has been poisoned. In a post-battle flurry, I rub medicine on her forehead to heal her illness. Before I know it, the purple aura disappears and she’s back to normal, ready for loving chin scratches and to be fed edible beans. With the mere scratch of my stylus on a 3DS screen, she is soothed.

but don’t expect any add-on Pokémon in the future

Virtual petting is often referred to as “skinship” within the context Japanese games, referring to the general closeness between a mother and child. It was controversially removed from the latest Fire Emblem game, but has remained in Pokémon and Kingdom Hearts titles for lovingly caring for your monster children through petting. When I was younger, one thing I desperately longed for was the ability to pet my own Pokémon. One creative fan felt the same, and saw to it to make that childhood dream a reality, via virtual reality.

Hi pal!
Hi pal!

Created by student and game developer Thomas Neptune, Pokémon Amie VR is an unofficial Pikachu pet raising simulator—without all the hardships of actually raising a pet. Courtesy of VR, you can pet a Pikachu and feed him, and that’s really it. As a small fan project made in Thomas’ spare time as a way to “de-stress,” and not at all affiliated with Nintendo nor Pokémon developers Game Freak, don’t expect any add-on Pokémon to be introduced in the future. Especially not a Gardevoir.

You can pet a Pikachu for yourself in Pokémon Amie VR here.

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