The best waves from the Basque coast can now be surfed virtually at Cité de l’océan in Biarritz, France.

YouRiding VirtualSurf, a true Surfing simulator

Biarritz, France - VirtualSurf is a virtual reality experience that was custom made for the Ocean museum in Biarritz (Cité de l'océan). Based on the combination of three technologies - action sports game developer YouRiding, Oculus Rift, and Microsoft’s Kinect - the game enables a player to surf three waves: classic La Côte des Basques, the gigantic Belharra off St-Jean de Luz, and Mundaka the crown jewel of the Basque coast. An experience that is surprisingly realistic, immersive and exclusive.

A one-of-a-kind experience

VirtualSurf constitutes the alliance of three avant-guarde technologies:

  • YouRiding: the action sports gaming platform, heralded for it’s realism

  • Oculus Rift: the new virtual reality headset which immerses the viewer in 3D action

  • Microsoft Kinect: a specialized camera that detects body movements in real-time, enabling players to control their surfing experience inside the game.

How a VirtualSurf session works

Starting position: feet side by side in surf position, with the headset on, facing the Kinect. The player chooses between three waves (Belharra, Mundaka, Côte des Basques) and three levels of difficulty (simple, medium, hard). Wave an arm in the air to signal takeoff, and you are projected into a takeoff. Move your body forward and you accelerate, move back to slow down, rotate to the left to go up and right to go down. With these motions you will get barreled, and even have the option to do an air. At the end, a score is given to the player who can also watch his wave afterwards, from another angle on the screen.

“This is amazing! We can ride the barrel like in reality but take more risks and try to stay longer without hurting myself if I fall. This technology could help any rider to get better in real life!„ Fred Compagnon, pro rider

First impressions

Whatever your surfing level, the player feels as though they are gliding and can attest to  the speed. An enticing sensation is created by the total immersion, the interactive gameplay and the realistic graphics. For surfers of all levels the game could help achieve better performance in reading waves and riding barrels, without the fear of experiencing a brutal wipeout. VirtualSurf is set to consistently grow as a platform: new waves, better upcoming technology and sensory feel. When you try it, be sure to share your experience and pictures on Twitter and Instagram using #VirtualSurf.

Important information

"VirtualSurf - the virtual experience” is open to everyone, except for children and persons under 140 cm. Only by reservation: www.citedelocean.com. A game developed through a partnership between Cité de l’océan, the city of Biarritz, YouRiding, ESTIA recherche, IFORM, CoreExpert.

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About YouRiding

Started in 2007 in France, Intellysurf is a video game studio specializing in action-sports video games, editing and publishing YouRiding. Their mission is to create realistically crafted video games to help you feel and discover the adrenaline for the action-sports anywhere anytime.