Ready Player One imagines the year 2044 as an industrial wasteland where people escape the perils of modern life by strapping on virtual reality headsets and disappearing into a vast digital playground called the OASIS. The book, written by Ernest Cline, was published in 2011 -- a year before Palmer Luckey and Brendan Iribe founded Oculus VR. Since then, VR has become a staple of the technology and gaming spheres, with dozens of headsets on the market; everything from cheap, smartphone-powered devices, to untethered PC rigs costing upwards of $1,000 to run properly.
Ready Player One may be set in the near future, but it could have easily taken place in 2018. Nowhere is that more apparent than SXSW's Ready Player One VR event.