Meta says it wants to connect Horizon Worlds and Crayta in “meaningful ways.” This will give the company’s plans for the metaverse the first hint of cross-platform interoperability.
Meta may be very interested in the metaverse, but hasn’t done much to build one yet. Sure, the company has Horizon Worlds, which is a great way for people to work together to make things. However, Horizon Worlds is an island unto itself and doesn’t work with anything outside of its own walls, which is something that many people agree is necessary for a proper metaverse. But soon, Meta says, it will take its first step—a small one—toward a metaverse that is all connected.
Next week, at the Meta Connect event, the company plans to talk about how it will connect its Horizon Worlds VR creation platform to Crayta, which Meta bought last year.
In a session called “Building Bridges to the Metaverse,” the company says, “[User-generated content] creation platforms Crayta and Meta Horizon Worlds will soon be linked in ways that will show the potential of a metaverse of experiences with shared values. Leaders from both teams will talk about this journey and show how it’s possible for two products on different platforms to connect meaningfully and add value without hurting either one.
We won’t know more about how deep this connection will go until the session itself, but another session shows that one part of it will be sharing avatars between platforms.
The thinking and problem-solving processes that enabled the [user-generated content] game platform Crayta to accept Meta Avatars into its ecosystem are explained in this session. Takeaways from this study include technological problem-solving scenarios that enable a user’s avatar to move between platforms as well as insights into how another platform views avatar appeal.
It’s unclear if this will be a one-way street or a two-way street, where avatars from either platform can travel in both directions (where Meta Avatars can jump into Crayta but not the other way around). Aside from using the same avatar, it’s unclear if other aspects of users’ digital identities, such as usernames, control preferences, and in-game currency, will be transferable between platforms.
Many people agree that the metaverse should be open and widely interoperable, just like the web. As a result, while it’s encouraging to see Meta take its first steps toward connecting two previously unrelated platforms, this is still just one player joining a closed club with no way for others to join. In that regard, it will still be a while before we witness anything that truly resembles a metaverse.