The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

Without the academic endorsement of Tsinghua and Peking University, without the luxurious experience of Ali Tencent , without the capital friends of Hillhouse Sequoia, do ordinary you and I still have the opportunity to “start from scratch”?

In addition to the so-called big business of big people, “Shenxiang” launched a series of reports focusing on the entrepreneurial direction of “civilians”, “Ordinary Entrepreneurship”, in-depth and practitioners to sort out the visible opportunities and practical difficulties. Some of them have a college degree; some use their fishing time to play part-time while working in a large factory; some are “serial entrepreneurs” who have opened a spicy hot pot and a decoration team; some have wealth and freedom, but for one time Ordinary entrepreneurs handed out flyers under the scorching sun and stepped their feet in the mud.

Entrepreneurship is not exclusive to elites. As long as you have a clear mind and a unity of knowledge and action, the dividend will not peak. I hope that these records and thinking can inspire you and me.

Script killing, escape room, offline interactive entertainment activities are becoming more and more real: watching the script, dressing up, entering the drama, entering the carefully arranged venue, all preparations are for three words-immersion. But in a VR experience store, all you have to do is bring a headset.

The VR boom is not only in the primary market, but also in shopping malls.

Unlike the dizzy dinosaur park and roller coaster videos that were simply played a few years ago, there are now many offline VR experience halls upgraded. “Biochemical Hospital”, “Top Secret Files”, “Ghost Story”, “Legend of Sword and Fairy”…This is not an online movie, but an immersive VR game to choose from.

Searching for VR experience venues in Beijing area on Dianping and other software, there are dozens of stores. The price of various games and movie viewing experiences varies: a half-hour multiplayer VR game is priced at around 150 yuan per person, with a private room equipped with a higher price; the experience on a VR game console is about 50 yuan for 10 minutes; Larger space VR experience halls also accept group building projects …In addition, there are also small VR experience equipment in the mall to attract passengers, and party hall operators are also next to mahjong machines, board games, and KTVs. Put on the VR headset.

What’s more noteworthy is that this sense of technology does not just stay in the first-tier cities, the “civilized” VR is gradually penetrating more low-tier markets.

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

Some VR experience stores in Beijing area of ​​Dianping

While scripts, secret rooms and other activities attract a large number of entrepreneurs, offline VR experience also attracts entrepreneurs, and the advertisements of VR experience stores can also be displayed on Douyin.

A salesperson for an offline VR experience hall brand gave “Shen Xiang” an enticing account that did not know the truth or falsehood: “This store was opened in a county-level city, with sales of nearly 200,000 yuan in the first month. Basically, it can stay between 120,000 and 150,000 per month, and the shop rent is 10,000 per month.” “The shop in Tongzhou is 150 square meters, with a turnover of two to three million a year, and a rent of 90,000 a month.”

Is the offline VR experience store a new experience, or is it a new experience? Once dead under the wind, can it really make money now?

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

Pay for the freshness

One working day afternoon, “Deep Sound” came to the Immersive World·Large Space VR Experience Hall in a shopping mall near Sanlitun. In this slightly depressed mall in the core business district, the second and third floors are almost occupied by escape rooms and script kill shops. In contrast, the body spa and table tennis training shops seem a little out of place.

The immersive world store is about 80 square meters, and the video game area and rest area account for about one-third, and the other is the VR game area surrounded by green screens. This store offers 7 games with themes such as decryption, horror, fairy, shooting, etc. The price of a 45-minute game is 198 yuan per person, a 30-minute game is 158 yuan, and a 15-minute game is 88 yuan. Each is a multiplayer game, generally allowing 1-4 people to participate.

There were not many customers in the mall on weekdays. There were three clerk in the store. There were no other customers. The clerk accompanied the reporter to play a room escape game with a moderate degree of horror. After the experience, overall it exceeded expectations. Players need to bring HTC’s Vive headset with a “backpack” that is clearly connected to the headset, which is actually an HP console, and then hold the handle with both hands to enter the game.

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

Large space games provided by the immersive world

The main line of the game is to find clues, move the organs to open secret rooms one by one to complete the prompt task. The immersion of the game is good, and the completion of actions such as walking, picking, discarding, and placing are relatively smooth. Of course, there are also some details that make people jump off the scene, such as the halo caused by the low resolution, the objects falling on the ground will overlap with the wooden floor, the host behind it will start to heat up, and the neck will hurt for a long time looking for clues.

After the game is cleared, take off the headset and return to the display world, which feels a bit unreal. The clerk of Immersive World told “Shen Xiang” that on a typical weekday, you can play 3 to 5 games a day. On weekends or holidays, there are many people. If the line is full, you can play 15 games. In the afternoon of this working day for more than an hour, two individual customers came to the store, followed by a group building team.

Liu Yang, the store manager, told Shenxiang that the Immersion World brand has opened more than a dozen stores in Beijing. According to its official website, as of September this year, there were more than 75 contracted stores nationwide.

In addition to Immersive World, a brand that focuses on large-space multiplayer VR games, there is also Leke VR, a company that provides various types of VR experience devices and lightweight games. The one-hour group purchase price of the main push big space game on Dianping is 138 yuan per person, and the single experience price of the small game is around 50 yuan.

According to the size of the store, the stores are mainly divided into three types: Nakajima, Main Store and Comprehensive Experience Store. Generally speaking, the area of ​​Nakajima is small, and there will be 3 or 4 devices; the main store of about 80 square meters requires 6 or 7 devices ; larger stores can provide both large-space games and lightweight games and views. Shadow experience.

Space Zero puts the focus of the VR experience on the viewing content. The consumption of a single VR movie is around RMB 50. According to Chen Jingshu, the co-founder of the parent brand VeeR, the direct-operated store in Zero Space occupies an area of ​​100 to 200 square meters, and will be equipped with 8 to 20 movie seats and 4 to 8 gaming devices. There are nearly a hundred VR films in the film library. According to the operation situation and the specific location of the store, 20 films will be launched during the same period as the main push, including the award-winning VR films of the International Film Festival, as well as IP derivatives such as Pig Man and Super Pan VR experience content, the update frequency will be 1-2 per month. Screenings are occasionally held. For example, at this year’s XR Interactive Immersive Video Exhibition in Cannes, Space Zero carried out a screening of award-winning content. The weekday ticket for two singles is 99 yuan, and the pass is 198 yuan per person.

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

Make quick money?

Different types of brand VR experience halls are open to join, can entrepreneurs get a share of it?

The brand leads the door, and the practice lies in the individual. After all, the offline entertainment industry is still a business that focuses on operations: in the early stage, the brand will be deeply involved in site selection, decoration, content planning and other links. In the later stage of operation, it depends on the operating skills of the franchisees.

Specifically, in terms of preliminary preparations, the first is site selection and decoration. Choosing the right place is the first step to success. Experience pavilions are mostly selected in business districts, large commercial complexes, tourist attractions, etc. Passenger flow is a key factor, and the specific size and spatial structure of the store will affect the configuration and placement of equipment.

“For example, in Sanlitun, we have relatively many young people, and they dare to spend money to try new and exciting things.” said Liu Yang, the manager of Immersion World. And because there are many secret rooms and script killing shops nearby, they also have a certain gathering effect between each other, which has a leading role, “you can play here for a day.”

In terms of decoration style, the sense of technology and fashion of the VR experience store are the core elements that distinguish it from other offline entertainment stores. Each brand is also creating an iconic style. In these links, the brand will generally be responsible for site selection, contact with shopping malls, decoration design, assist in the early opening of stores, assist in training personnel and lead stores, and provide equipment and content. Participation in the later period is mainly regular operation and maintenance and new content. Can attract more customers through online channels, and increase the rate of return is the franchisee’s own ability.

For the specific franchise model, take Leke VR as an example, the franchise fee for stores above 50 square meters is 98,000 yuan, and the franchise fee for stores below 50 square meters is 68,000 yuan. In addition to the franchise fee, VR equipment must be purchased from the brand. The price of the equipment varies. The following figure shows the mainstream equipment: Space-time shuttle is 59,800 yuan, 360-degree swivel chair is 59,800 yuan, Corps Pro is 29,800 yuan, Fast Lightning is 29,800 yuan, and AR Sniper Elite is 56800 yuan. The content does not need to be purchased separately. After confirming the intention of cooperation, the franchisee needs to pay an intent of 30,000 yuan, and the initial contact stage is not suitable for refund. Leke provides equipment repurchase and renewal, 20% off repurchase within 3 months, 40% off renewal within 1 year, and 30% off renewal within 2 years. Subsequent consumers have to give the brand a profit of 6 yuan for each experience, “4 yuan of which is for the upstream game company.”

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

Some equipment provided by Leke VR

The Zero Space pilot franchise operation before the National Day is different from directly-operated stores. The franchise store model will be presented in the form of a “zero bus” or a single device. The franchise fee (including equipment) of a standardized No. 0 bus is less than 100,000 yuan; the franchise fee (including equipment) of a single No. 0 cabin (a single viewing device) is less than 10,000 yuan (the more the number, the lower the unit price ). The content supply is also provided by the brand uniformly, and it is divided according to the box office revenue in the later period. According to Chen Jingshu, during the National Day, the first batch of franchisees operated in good condition, and a single No. 0 bus had a single-day revenue of several thousand yuan.

The Metaverse has not come yet, but the VR experience hall has already made money

One of the franchise modes of the zero space, the small zero bus

To make a simple calculation, to open an offline VR experience hall, the cost input includes the franchise fee, decoration, equipment, rent, manpower, marketing expenses of the network channel, store operation and maintenance, and equipment renewal, etc. The rent and labor costs in first-tier cities are higher, but the potential user groups are larger.

How long will it take to pay back? According to many practitioners, small shops return to their costs faster than large shops. Leke’s sales staff stated that “large stores can pay back their costs in 8 months to a year and a half, while small stores can basically pay back their costs in 3-6 months.”

According to Chen Jingshu’s experience in operating directly-operated stores in the Zero Space, the average return period is half a year to one year. It is expected that the franchise model of “Zero Bus” will return to the original faster. Take an individual store in Shanghai as an example. The actual area is more than 100 square meters and there are about 20 equipment in total. The one-time input cost is less than 300,000 yuan. The peak season revenue can reach 200,000 to 250,000 in a single month, and the off-season revenue is around 100,000. . In addition to site rent and labor costs (about 30-40%), the cost can be recovered in 4-6 months. If it is a small shop, because the investment is smaller, the cost recovery speed may be faster.

In summary, the characteristics of joining the VR offline experience business are:

  • You can make money, but location selection is very important. Early sales will be high. Sustainability mainly depends on later operations. According to a practitioner, a profit rate of about 30% is a relatively high level. With a monthly turnover of more than 100,000, the net profit should be about 40,000.
  • The initiative of franchisees is mainly in the later stage of operation, such as giving a good user experience to improve the card application rate, and the ability to take the initiative in upstream equipment and content is very low.
  • At present, there is no brand with high user awareness in the market, with low penetration rate, large room for growth, and potential for sinking.
  • Compared with secret rooms and board games, the content maturity is lower, which is mainly caused by the overall development speed of VR technology. 

“It takes 3-4 years to enter this industry to make money. After 3 to 4 years, this industry may be facing a new generation. If you want to make money, you must make money on the vent, because we do An industry is to make money on the air,” said the sales staff of Leke.

Regarding the sustainability of the industry, Chen Jingshu said, “Content is still the core, and better-quality film and television content and games are developing.” Now some stores provide pirated and inferior content to the industry as a whole. Only high-quality VR content can bring a good experience to the audience, thus forming the audience’s consumption habits for VR. “

A senior VR content producer told “Shenxiang”: ” A normal quality escape room game. The production time is usually 3-6 months. It can be made with an investment of less than 1 million. It can be made even faster and at a lower cost. Because Now basically the head-mounted display manufacturers have their own SDKs. Both the game engines Unity and Unreal have a better connection with the head-mounted display manufacturers, and the connection with Steam (game platform) is relatively smooth.”

But what must be paid attention to is the content quality issue. “The content used to be elementary school students. Now the content has improved a lot, but there are still limitations. If you want to make a well-made game like a 3A masterpiece, the head-mounted display device will not be able to carry it, and the content of the content has an upper limit.” Express. “Some film and television practitioners and game studios who were hesitant in the past will now be willing to try.”

The development of the VR industry has spurred upstream and downstream business opportunities. But perhaps the biggest competitor of the offline experience store will be the popular consumer-grade headset-this day has not yet arrived.

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