Really enjoyed this competition. Kinda ran out of time. Doesn't help that I started relatively late - didn't think I'd enter, but I had a flash of an idea that I felt I had to share. More things I would've liked to have tried/added. In retrospect, a hint at a planet or moon or two would've been a fantastic thing to have added... even a planetary ring hinting at literal parallel metaverses. Also new with the rendering engine, so couldn't figure out how to do some of the stuff I wanted. Also did this pretty much all in Sketchup... kinda pushed Sketchup to the limits of what it could manage.
But it was a fun challenge - unique to what I've done before, and kinda a cool and different artform. Hopefully the piece is able to convey my ideas about what the metaverse could be without me having to say much.
But if you prefer to read about it:
Basically the metaverse is an interconnected shared community VR space. It's a wild and wooly place full of fantasy and impossibilities. So you get a mix of flying whales, futuristic spaceships, flying islands with a mix of architecture. These places are all connected by nodes of light - signfying that users can teleport from one location to another. Islands are grouped by themes.
You stand in the middle of a social VR space called 'The Metaverse Club' - and the idea is that it's impossible architecture that's got a mix of what you know (to ground you with expectations) and what you know can't happen (to blow away those expectations).
I think social VR will be a big important part of VR in the future - and it'll be made more enticing if users commune in visually interesting and attractive spaces. Some of those spaces can be calming without been sedate.
There are already places like this in VR; VR Chat, Altspace, etc. So it's kinda inspired by some of that. Would be cool to come into a space like this and watch TV with friends, listen to music, or even just read a book. I imagine you could easily transition between more social activities like playing a board game and simply seeking some refuge from the bustle, without even changing the space you're in.