A day or so ago a new website emerged for Azana Bands, a new bluetooth device that links with your VR headset and allows you to experience pain, happiness, fear, and other emotions by sending pulses through your body via a device worn round the neck.
VR can be utterly terrifying with just a headset, so you can imagine how intense it would be if you body was being stimulated at the same time. A number of parents have been in touch with me asking about the product which can inflict ‘real pain’ in VR, “Are they real? They look really nasty,” asked one concerned mother via Facebook.
However, it’s completely fake. A really good fake, with a sophisticated website backed up with an unboxing video with popular YouTubers Hat Films wearing game related t-shirts, and a full feature on Den of Geek explaining how the new device works and how it will revolutionise gaming.
In fact the whole thing is a marketing campaign for a new show on Channel 4 in the UK
KISS ME FIRST – Coming soon on Channel 4
When Leila discovers the ‘AzanaBand’ it changes her world forever. First she stumbles upon a secret paradise hidden on the edges of her favourite game, Azana, where she meets Tess. Tess is hedonistic, impulsive and insatiable – everything Leila isn’t. But when a member of her in-game group mysteriously disappears, Leila begins to suspect the hidden sanctuary isn’t the digital Eden its creator claims it to be.
There’s no mention of the TV show on either the YouTube video or Den of Geek, only the Azana Band website reveals a link to Channel 4 so you can understand why some people are rather concerned about the device.
Channel 4 have clearly spent a fortune on the campaign, this seems to be their new ‘Black Mirror’, but perhaps they forgot that everyone can view the internet not just tech savvy geeks who can spot a fake a mile off.