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Oculus Rift Kickstarter backers will get a free consumer edition

Oculus Rift Kickstarter backers will get a free consumer edition

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Oculus will be shipping a consumer version of its Rift VR headset to people who backed the original Kickstarter project in 2012. In a post this morning, the company announced a "Kickstarter Edition" of the Rift for any of the 9,522 original supporters who pledged enough for a development kit — by our count, around 7,500. Backers will get a survey from Kickstarter before February 1st; if their country isn't one of the 20 where the Rift is officially launching, Oculus is "working on an alternative." While the headsets won't look any different from normal Rifts, they'll be "among the first" to ship, and the box will be marked as a Kickstarter Edition. Like normal preorders, they'll come bundled with the games EVE: Valkyrie and Lucky's Tale.

Oculus backers have been on one of the wildest rides we've seen since Kickstarter launched. Luckey has said he would originally have been happy selling even 300 development kits — the company rejected a $500,000 goal as potentially too high, only to raise $2.4 million by the end of the campaign. Less than two years later, Oculus was bought by Facebook for $2 billion, to the chagrin of a few backers. It's now managed to acquire a few companies of its own, and even before the Rift's release, it helped build one of the most high-profile gadgets of 2015: the Samsung Gear VR. For everyone who came on board later, Rift preorders are opening in roughly 24 hours, with the price and shipping date still unknown.

Correction: The Kickstarter Edition will ship to backers who pledged enough for a Rift, not all backers.

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