Guided Meditation VR
|Guided Meditation VR|
|Platform||SteamVR, Oculus Rift (Platform)|
|Device||HTC Vive, Gear VR|
|Operating System||Windows, Android|
|Genre||Casual, Indie, Early Access, Early Access, VR, Relaxing, Productivity, Educational, Casual, Utilities|
|Input Device||Tracked motion controllers|
|Play Area||Seated, Standing, Room-Scale|
|Game Mode||Single Player|
|Release Date||Oct 1, 2016|
Guided Meditation VR is a free virtual reality application released on January 12, 2016, and published by Cubicle Ninjas. It is currently compatible with Samsung Gear VR head-mounted display (HMD), but there are plans to also bring it to Oculus Rift and HTC Vive . It has been received with general praise and won the most innovative game award at Michigan State’s Meaningful Play Conference . It provides a full immersive environment, where the users are transported into beautiful environments  with the goal of making meditation simple and visual. Players can use the application at home or work, in order to increase feelings of relaxation and calm during their daily routines .
Guided Meditation VR uses the HMD to immerse the player in a virtual world not only by visually creating new lush locations, but also by engaging the user with a realistic soundscape, providing an experience that subverts these senses, compelling the brain to believe that you are really somewhere else . There are four tranquility inducing settings: Autumn Forest, Zen Garden, Tropical Beach and the Artic . Within each location there are four unique meditation spots, for a total of 16 unique relaxation areas  . After the player choses the environment to explore, there are nine different guided sessions in which a narrator guides the user through various techniques of Zen meditation, Loving Compassion, and relaxation. The experience is also customizable, with the option of turning off the guide’s voice, and the use or not of background music. New updates with free environments, meditations, and teachers will be released in the future . Guided Meditation VR is the world’s first consumer app that uses heart rate monitoring in virtual reality without an add-on. This provides an immediate feedback to the player, to inform him about the efficacy of the relaxation provided by the specific exercise chosen .
According to the developer’s website, the development of this app was “driven by interest in anxiety management through gaming and the growing cultural shift towards a more mindful lifestyle.”  There are a number of intended usage ranges for the game: from escaping the everyday, to pain management, pre/post-operative anxiety, senior care, and others  . Indeed, Guided Meditation VR is being used in a pilot study at medical centers to help transport patients from the medical environment to a more peaceful place that enables a greater level of relaxation and anxiety reduction .
During the last years there have been some studies about the benefits of meditation and relaxation techniques. These range from brain-boosting – improving standardized academic achievement and focus   – to stress and pain reduction, and improving the general mental health state of a person  , providing already a firm ground for the effectiveness of the game app has an agent of life improvement.
Meditation made simple & visual.
Bring peace, joy, and calm back into your daily life with the virtual relaxation app Guided Meditation VR. Transform your home into an exotic, relaxing escape.
– ENVIRONMENTS –
Escape the everyday in one of over 12 lush environments, each with 10+ unique, customized meditation spots.
– GUIDED MEDITATIONS –
Enjoy over 25 guided sessions in Zen, Movement, Loving Compassion, or Relaxation. Learn ancient meditation practices in a cutting-edge way.
– CUSTOMIZATION –
Prefer a 10 minute, 5 minute, or 2 minute meditation? Like music? No music? Want to select from curated spaces or simply explore? Customize your meditations to be perfect, just for you.
– FRESH CONTENT –
Enjoy new relaxation environments, meditations, teachers, and features in free future Early Access updates.
Leave the worries of your life for a short virtual vacation, and return calmer and stronger. Find your happy place.
Thoughts on the Oculus Rift DK2 and Gear VR editions:
“Guided Meditation’ Proves That ‘VR Relaxation’ Will Almost Certainly Become Its Own Genre”
– Road to VR
"A brilliant way to clear your head of distractions and frustrations."
“When I removed the headset, I felt euphoric. Part of me had expected the experience to be an anti-climax, but instead, it had been a revelation […] My happy, creative mood lasted the rest of the day.”
– IDEO Stories
"If you’re new to meditation, and don’t have access to a class or a teacher, and you’re looking to learn some of the basics of a guided practice like loving-kindness, an app like Guided Meditation VR would help."
"Slowly, I let the pixelated environment float into my consciousness. I find my eyes resting on the lapping waves that reflect the clouds—a perfect visualization for a metaphor the narrator offers me, to think of my thoughts as clouds and let them pass."
– Fast Company
"Takes relaxation to high-tech levels."
"Turn it on and relax your body and soul."
- OS: Windows 10
- Processor: Intel i5-4590
- Memory: 8 GB RAM
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970
- Storage: 9 GB available space
- OS: Windows 10
- Processor: Intel i7-4770
- Memory: 16 GB RAM
- Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti
- Storage: 9 GB available space
Images and Videos
- Guided Meditation VR. Retrieved from guidedmeditationvr.com
- PRNewswire (2016). Virtual Reality Relaxation Goes Mainstream As Guided Meditation VR Debuts As Free Download In The Oculus Store. Retrieved from www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/virtual-reality-relaxation-goes-mainstream-as-guided-meditation-vr-debuts-as-free-download-in-the-oculus-store-300278241.html
- Lang, Ben (2014). “Guided Meditation” Proves That “VR Relaxation” Will Almost Certainly Become Its Own Genre. Retrieved from www.roadtovr.com/guided-meditation-proves-vr-relaxation-will-almost-certainly-genre
- Guided Meditation VR. Retrieved from guidedmeditationvr.com/about-2
- Smith, Sherri L. (2016). Guided Meditation VR App Helps You Reach Your Zen. Retrieved from www.tomsguide.com/us/guided-meditation-vr-app,news-22415.html
- Graham, Peter (2016). Relax and Recuperate Using Guided Meditation VR for Gear VR. Retrieved from www.vrfocus.com/2016/06/relax-and-recuperate-using-guided-meditation-vr-for-gear-vr
- Cubicle Ninjas. Guided Meditation VR. Retrieved from cubicleninjas.com/portfolio/guided-meditation-vr
- Rudderham, Tom (2016). Guided Meditation VR Launches on Oculus Store. Retrieved from www.theriftarcade.com/guided-meditation-vr-launches-on-oculus-store
- Graham, Peter (2016). AppliedVR Partners With Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on Therapeutic VR Content. Retrieved from www.vrfocus.com/2016/06/appliedvr-partners-with-cedars-sinai-medical-center-on-therapeutic-vr-content
- Deardoff, Julie (2010). Meditation Isn’t Just About Relaxing. Retrieved from phys.org/news/2010-12-meditation-isnt.html
- Physorg (2011). New Research Shows Transcendental Meditation Improves Standardized Academic Achievement. Retrieved from phys.org/news/2011-03-transcendental-meditation-standardized-academic.html
- Physorg (2011). Demystifying Meditation – Brain Imaging Illustrates How Meditation Reduces Pain. Retrieved from phys.org/news/2011-04-demystifying-meditation-brain-imaging.html
- Physorg (2009). Transcendental Meditation Reduces Stress, Improves Mental Health. Retrieved from phys.org/news/2009-10-transcendental-meditation-stress-mental-health.html