Furality Online Xperience

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Furality Online Xperience
FuralityLogo.png
Location VRChat
Website
Status Ongoing
First iteration May 22-24, 2020
Subject Furry, VR

Furality Online Xperience, or just Furality, is an ongoing series of bi-annual furry virtual reality conventions arranged on the VRChat platform. Its first iteration began on Memorial Day weekend, May 22-24, 2020. Its second convention, Furality 2000, was hosted on November 6-8, 2020.

History[edit]

The idea for Furality Online Xperience was published on March 28, 2020 through their Telegram channel. The convention gathered widespread attention in the virtual reality community. It is the first official online furry convention of its kind that was visualized in the form of 3D models, or avatars, rather than in real life attendees (artists, furry fans, fursuiters, etc). It was originally proposed as a 'convention that never ends', since the idea was that VRChat is a platform that will continue to be online after the convention is over. Another reason for this was that furry meetups on VRChat happen very frequently around the time that FOX was hosted.

There was no registration fee to sign up for the first convention. Due to licensing fees with VRChat, Furality later added a minimum $10 attendance fee, along with other registration tiers such as First Class and Sponsor. They added a program that offers free attendance to those who financially cannot afford registration due to the 2020 economic recession. However, a donation was encouraged and could be given to the convention's charity, SaveAFox; a non-profit organization based in Minnesota. Notable attendees included VRChat co-creator "VRPill"; furry YouTuber Pocari Roo; kemono YouTuber Sherbert Shenanigans; professional fighting game player SonicFox5000; and voice actor Sean Chiplock.

In July 2020, Furality, Inc. was incorporated as a Florida nonprofit corporation to operate future "Furality Online Xperience" conventions. Its mission is to provide a forum for attendees to gather to experience, learn, share, and celebrate anthropomorphic arts, including performing arts, such as improv and musical performances, as well as visual arts, such as cartoons, sketches, photography, 3D modeling, and digital design. Furality, Inc will also collect donations to the benefit of selected charitable organizations, typically but not exclusively ones associated with animal welfare and/or preservation.[1]

Reception[edit]

Furality Online Xperience garnered large attention for a first-time convention on social media websites Twitter, Telegram, and Discord. Attending an online convention was seen as highly convenient for many reasons, including safety from the COVID-19 virus, financial ease from not purchasing hotel rooms, expensive convention registration, passport registration, travel burdens, and more. Some attendees mentioned they were geographically isolated from mainstream conventions, or suffer from social anxiety, which made FOX a great alternative for them.

During the first day of the convention many attendees complained of not being able to access the online portal that would allow them to join the convention rooms; the Furality staff had to postpone the sending of login information emails in order to not completely overload either the VRChat servers or their own web portal. Furality staff apologized for the delay to those affected and began sending out the remaining login information emails by Saturday morning, as the service had stabilized significantly.

There was a total of 2,692 confirmed attendees its first weekend -- a number that Furality staff did not not anticipate. At the time the convention ended, it was ranked the tenth largest furry convention as of May 2020, shying between Anthro New England that had 2,570 attendees in 2020, and DenFur that had 2,735 attendees in 2019.

During the closing ceremony, it was announced that attendees of the convention raised 1,183 donations for Furality's sponsored charity, SaveAFox, totaling $8,646.93 USD gathered throughout the weekend. Furality Online Xperience was deemed a great success, and is considered a milestone for online furry conventions.

A promotional banner for FOX 2000.

Furality 2000[edit]

During an interview at VirtualFurence, the chairman hinted at another FOX event happening in 2020. On August 30, it was confirmed that a new convention would take place between November 6-8, 2020. The theme is "Furality 2000" featuring a Y2K aesthetic. It's currently foreshadowing to take place on a "galactic cruise", celebrating 2000s video games. Unlike the first iteration of Furality Online Xperience, pre-registration became be available and added the options of "First Class" ($35 USD) and "Sponsor" ($100 USD) registration tiers along with basic attendee privileges.

There were numerous lobbies for the Furality 2000 convention:

  • DIX-E Ship (Main lobby)
  • Panel Room
  • Club FYNN (Raves)
  • Dealer's Den (Blue, Green, Purple)

As a result, 3,120 attendees registered for Furality 2000; 428 more attendees than FOX's Q2 iteration in May. $5,846 USD was raised for the SaveAFox Rescue charity. Despite the imbalance between the attendee and charity count, Furality, Inc. commissioned and acquired many more assets for their second convention compared to their first, including downloadable asset packs for First Class and Sponsor attendees. Furality, Inc. also had to officially pay licensing fees to VRChat.

Overall, Furality Online Xperience 2000's livestream, web portal, and registration process greatly improved in regards to stability, and little issues were experienced over the course of the weekend. With Furality's generous donation, SaveAFox Rescue announced plans to expand operations to Florida, USA.

Downloads and requirements[edit]

VRChat can be downloaded on Steam for both VR and non-VR users interested in attending Furality. It was stated on their website that although a virtual reality (VR) headset is not needed in order to attend the event, it is recommended "for the best experience".[2]

Supported OSes and devices include Windows 8.1, Windows 10, and Oculus Quest.[3] VRChat is not officially supported on Apple macOS, Ubuntu, and Linux OS.[4]


Information[edit]

# Event Name Dates of Convention Theme Venue Location Attendance Charity Amount Notes
1 Furality Online Xperience: Furality 2020 May 22-24, 2020 Cyberpunk VRChat F.O.X. Event Room 2,692 $8,646.93 SaveAFox Corporation The first VR-only furry convention without any pre-existing foundation to an in-person convention.
2 Furality Online Xperience: Furality 2000 Nov 6-8, 2020 Y2K Aesthetic VRChat DIX-E 3,120 $5,846 SaveAFox Corporation First furry convention to Event Partner with VRChat
3 Furality Online Xperience: Furality Luma June 4-6, 2021 Bioluminescent Forest VRChat Luma Forest 6,829[5] $14,649 SaveAFox Corporation
4 Furality Online Xperience: Furality ? Nov 5-7, 2021 [6] Super Hero/Villain VRChat  ? upcoming upcoming

References[edit]

  1. Furality website, About Page, checked March 31, 2021.
  2. Furality Online Xperience front page. Retrieved April 1, 2020.
  3. System Requirements page on VRChat's website. Dated January 10, 2020. Retrieved April 17, 2020.
  4. Platforms page on the Steam's website. Retrieved April 17, 2020.
  5. Furality Twitter, Tweet, checked June 11, 2021.
  6. Furality Twitter, Tweet, checked July 16, 2021.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

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