Newswire: New Star Wars virtual reality demo lets you (kind of) explore Jakku

The Star Wars franchise has always prided itself on being at the forefront of cinematic technology, whether that means creating stunning starship battles using practical effects or making a really stupid looking CGI flying pear. This latest bit of Star Wars tech splits the difference: It’s not nearly as cool as the battle of Hoth, but not quite as dumb as podracing either. The Star Wars Facebook page just released a “360 degree experience” virtual reality video designed to promote the upcoming Force Awakens (as if it needed any more promotion).

In the minute-long video, users take a ride on Rey’s speeder across Jakku, the desert planet that will feature prominently in the new film. While you can’t control the speed or direction of the journey, you can use your mouse to look around the landscape at the Imperial rubble and angry locals. (The 360-degree video technology …

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