Magic butterfly wings that give you the power to float in your favorite meditative VR world? You can have them for a price. The Meta is starting to unlock monetization in its open worldVR application, , starting with items that will be available for purchase in each world. But these items won’t be things you can take with you to other worlds… at least not yet.
The latest update of the Meta social platform aims to build an economy that its free open world app has not yet had. Meta had plans to makewith things you could buy and eventually transfer between apps, but these first steps in Horizon worlds are much smaller: these in-game items will only work on the worlds they were made from. Basically, they are a way for individual world makers to monetize their individual creations.
The new monetization tool has now been enabled for a limited number of carefully selected creators by Meta, and it is planned that at some point it will be shared with others. But not now.
“What creators can do to build their world can include behaviors that trigger monetization, which means we don’t really know everything they can do to make money,” said Vivek Sharma, Meta’s vice president at to Horizon. . “It’s exciting, but at the same time we want to do it in a way that eventually scales to traverse worlds, in shared spaces, and beyond.”
Meta reduces worldwide items sold by 25%, received from money earned at the cost of the creator’s platform, and payments are processed through the Meta App Store, as are app purchases or additional content in games or apps.
In addition to items from the world, Meta gives creators a monthly performance bonus that will change from month to month to encourage involvement in VR. The bonuses are designed to follow a similar strategy that Instagram already uses, but with a unique set of indicators. “We can look at metrics when we learn more about the overall ecosystem we want to reward for, but now it’s really just these more general metrics for engagement,” said Meaghan Fitzgerald, Horizon Worlds Product Marketing Manager.
The meta in its blog post calls these early monetization efforts “tests,” implying that rules may change and evolve. The company aims to provide ways to sell creator-made items that can be carried across the rest of Horizon worlds, such as avatar clothes, but at the moment the company sees world items as a way to tip or support the creator. They can lead to things like VIP access to worlds or extra content. These elements will eventually work on hardware as well: Meta plans to roll out its Horizon platform on devices other than the company’s own VR headsets.
There is also a risk that the items sold may not match what is advertised, but Meta relies on the community and creators to resolve the issue of verifying items in the world. The Meta is currently reviewing and approving items in the worlds that can be sold in this early test, according to Fitzgerald, but as the number of items continues to increase, it is unclear how the market will be managed on a larger scale when items eventually move beyond a specific user-created worlds.