WSL & Jeep launch VR experience

03 Apr 2018

By: Sport Industry Group

The World Surf League (WSL) and Jeep have released a new virtual reality (VR) experience, Jeep Sessions: A Surfing Journey in 360.

Jeep Sessions follows WSL Championship Tour surfers Jordy Smith and Malia Manuel as each embarks on a Jeep brand adventure to find the best waves. The project can be viewed in both a 360-degree video and an interactive VR experience. The VR application enables users to select their journey through “gaze-based interactions,” where the user’s eyes become the controller within the 360 visuals.

In this VR project launch, WSL teamed up with the Jeep brand and production company, Rapid VR.

“Our project goal was to push the boundaries of VR technology to show what a surf trip feels like from the first-person perspective,” said Steele, Rapid VR co-director. “I’m excited to share this. It’s pretty incredible knowing my mom can now experience riding a 20-foot wave.” 

Fans can enjoy the full Jeep Sessions experience by watching the full videos on WSL.TV/JeepVR. Fans can watch via headset, desktop or mobile. In addition, fans can watch on a custom App experience via a dedicated 360 app downloaded via through iTunes, Google Play, Daydream, or Oculus Gear VR App Stores.

Fans have the option to choose to explore in Smith’s all-new 2018 Jeep Wrangler or Manuel's Jeep Renegade. Within the app experience, viewers also have several points of choice presented by Sunny Garcia, Hawaiian surfing star.

“This was a special project to be a part of, and I am excited for the world to experience the journey with us,” said Smith. “It is incredible to see all the innovation that goes in behind-the-scenes to bring to life such a unique perspective of our surfing experience. When you're surfing, many people just see the endgame, but it's the whole adventure to find great waves with a friend. When you do, it's the best feeling in the world.”

“I love that everyone can go on whichever adventure they want in this VR experience,” said Manuel. “It’s a win-win for the viewer visually whether they go with me in the Jeep Renegade, or Jordy in the Jeep Wrangler, as we go off-roading to explore the beautiful scenery in Hawaii and find these amazing waves to share with the world.”