I Just Went Snack Shopping in VR, And I Loved It

Staff Writer
Updated

AUSTIN, TX — One minute I was trying to catch falling scoops of ice cream, the next I was watching flying blowfish turn into sprinkles. Throughout this insane experience, I was also shopping for snacks to be delivered.

No, I haven't unlocked a magic kingdom of candy and video game characters. Instead, I was simply wearing an Acer Mixed Reality headset and holding its controllers, and going wild in a concept VR experience from goPuff, an online delivery merchant.

The goPuff VR experience is filled with all kinds of food and drink, with three worlds: Pints on Pints is an ice cream dream, Munchies is for snack heaven and Dranks is for alcoholic beverages. Munchies just got an infusion of Hershey's branding, as goPuff just announced its a partnership with the chocolatier.

You navigate the VR world by moving your head to select items, examine their pricing and add them to your cart. But buying is almost secondary to the goPuff VR experience, as its interactive environments are delightfully absurd. The yellow bricks you activate are clearly meant to resemble, but not infringe on any copyright for, the ones you see in Super Mario games.

If you're not familiar with goPuff (don't worry, I wasn't either), they're one of the latest food and beverage delivery services, currently available in 28 major U.S. markets, including Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Columbus and Washington, DC.

When I asked goPuff vice president of business development Daniel Folkman about why you should try goPuff over, say, Postmates, he explained that goPuff controls all of the products and knows its own inventory. That means you're always going to get what you order, and not run into problems when your courier is buying these products from a store.

Back in the virtual world based around ice cream flavors, I saw another reason to go with goPuff: its virtual shelves have more Ben & Jerry's flavors than you can shake a spoon at. Folkman confirmed that all 55 of the flavors I saw are offered by goPuff, unlike how most convenience stores that delivery services use will only have a dozen or less.

Folkman told me that goPuff thinks millennials will be excited to test this service, which is not guaranteed to ever make it to market. For now, it's certainly a fun place to take a trip.

Credit: Tom's Guide