There Inc. announced that after five years in development, including nine months of beta testing, the online 3D world of There is now open to the public. There is an online gateway in which players can explore a 3D environment, socialize with other players, play online games, and even go shopping.
"There has built an innovative software platform with a patented physics engine that supports multiple applications, from consumer to military," said Steve Victorino, CEO of There Inc. "Our first consumer application, There Limited Access, has shown that consumers can see a real difference between the rich experience in There and traditional chat rooms and online games. After nine months of public beta testing we've proven that consumers are interested in a social online product where they can choose how they look, who they hang out with, what they do for a living, and what they want to buy."
There has been in beta testing since January, when 27,000 of over 180,000 applicants were invited to participate. The world of There is similar in shape and scale to Earth and currently features four distinct locales to explore, including the monkey ruins of Tiki, the Egyptian pyramids and tombs, the dark castles of Tyr, and the floating lily pads of Saja. The world has its own "Therebucks" economy, and players are even able to purchase Levi's jeans and Nike shoes for their avatars.
"There is based on the concept of connecting while doing," said Will Harvey, founder of There Inc. "This idea is relevant and powerful for consumers because it's similar to real life experiences. Sometimes hanging out with friends at the bar after the softball game is more fun than the game itself. The beta period has proven to us that our mix of socializing and play activities, coupled with the tools that allow members to create objects, events, or businesses, is the right dynamic for making There a consumer success."
There subscriptions start at around $4.95 a month, with a one-time $19.95 activation fee. Anyone interested in seeing what There has to offer should visit the game's official Web site where, among other things, a 14-day free trial is now available.