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How three friends who grew up playing video games have created a world-class VR immersion experience

Nov 15, 2021

Ready Team One was founded in Perth by three mates, Chris Cheng, Scott Whiteley and James Tang, who grew up playing video games. After feeling a strong sense of nostalgia for the social bonds formed with friends from LAN gaming in the 2000s, they wanted to share the thrills of team gaming with the rest of the world. “We set out to build our own entertainment system,” James shared. “With the emergence of VR technology, we wanted to take gaming experiences to the next level by integrating off the shelf VR hardware and started coding our first team based game titled "First Contact", a sci-fi alien themed space adventure with mind bending puzzles and intense action.”


“From there, we created a promotional video, bookings website and tested the market with a pop-up operation at a local basketball court/youth centre that drew significant media attention and social media following. We knew we were onto something when we were booked out every weekend that we operated and had overwhelmingly positive customer feedback!” 


Despite an initial struggle of launching a VR Arena during a global pandemic (like most founders!), the RTO founders were still able to grow and prove up a profitable operating model. Since then, this local startup has officially gone global with the launch of a second location in Monza, Italy, which was also deployed 100% remotely from Perth. 


After being accepted into Plus Eight for the 2021 accelerator program, the RTO team knew it was time to take it up a notch. "Plus Eight has helped us take our business to the next level, connecting us to the best in Perth's startup ecosystem and afforded us invaluable time with experienced mentors that have challenged us to dream big and think globally.” James continued.


“The South West immersion trip provided us with exclusive access to discussions with investors and founders of incredibly successful companies that have scaled internationally. We feel very fortunate and humbled to be working alongside an incredibly supportive cohort of inspiring fellow founders.” 


When asked how the RTO offering differs from other products available on the market, James shared that their experience is unparalleled. “We don’t just passively sit you in front of a computer screen, we throw you into the centre of the action, where you have to run, duck, hide, communicate and work together to solve puzzles all while being attacked by aliens, zombies and other baddies.” 


“Our total body VR immersion tracks your entire body right down to your fingertips in our free-roaming VR arenas. No cables or tethers, 200 SQM arenas allowing complete freedom. With upto 12 players in the VR world at a time and a large spectating area including an outdoor courtyard with BBQ and drinks, we can cater for large groups of more than 50. Perfect for team building, parties and social occasions in the heart of the Perth CBD.” 


At RTO, their aim is to blow the minds of their customers, from the minute they step into their avatars. “Our guests are always amazed by our Hollywood style full body tracking system - the only one in Australia and one of just a few in the world, meaning you won't experience immersion like this anywhere else in the country.” 


And the best part? All of their games are developed in-house by a local team, making this an incredible success story for the Perth startup scene. “We have already taken out a number of awards for our exclusive experiences,” James shared. “Including Real World XR's VR/AR Game of the Year (competing against 16 countries for the title), Epic Megagrant and WASCA Innovation in Game Design Award.”


So what’s next for Ready Team One? With plans to expand to the East Coast of Australia, US, and Asian markets soon through a licensing model, there’s no stopping co-founders Chris Cheng, Scott Whiteley and James Tang. All you can do is sit back and watch this great team continue to grow!


To find out more about our Plus Eight program, and how Spacecubed supports local businesses in their growth, speak to our team today!