Somnai, 22nd April
We went to Somnai in its preview week and suffered from faulty technology and a storyline that didn't make much sense. Yet I was still quite impressed with the setup and would have said it was worth a go to anyone who asked.
Luckily, as so many of us didn't get the full VR experience, we were comped tickets to go again and this time. This time. I want to urge everyone to go.
It feels like stepping into a Black Mirror episode. Everything is minimal white, softly spoken people - calm and eerie. You know something probably isn't quite right, even as they promise they will change your life and make you 'more' through lucid dreaming.
Well, we all know nightmares are also dreams...
There's a loose storyline in the above premise, with another one based upon the reading of a bedtime story layered on top. Mainly they serve as ways to get you from one VR experience to another, but the bedtime story aspect comes into its own, leaving the most mark on me afterwards.
The VR I thought was brilliant the first time (although my experience of it is limited) and was even better this time round - it explores certain sleep tropes such as flying/falling and general weirdness in dreams. It's disconcerting and disorienting and exhilarating and fun.
I believe the ticket price has dropped from £50 to £35 and it is well, well worth that price. I can now see the future of entertainment as VR, and it's starting now.
This Somnai experience is coming to a close but they have promised to come back with something even bigger and better - can't wait!