Segments in this Video

"The New Big Bang" (03:11)


Virtual reality will eventually penetrate all aspects of our lives. Creating a virtual world is creating an explosion of space to experience. Metaverse is the best thing we can possibly build. (Credits)

Creating Worlds (03:50)

Richard Bartle flips through a book of descriptions. M.U.D. stands for Multi User Dungeon. Text games have better pictures than graphical games and are direct descendants of M.U.D.; M.U.D. was developed at the University of Essex.

Forming the Container for the Virtual World (02:52)

In 1993, Damer visits writers of M.U.D. In Silicon Valley, Bruce Damer develops the Contact Consortium from 1994 on. Real trees inspire the "Sherwood Forrest" in a game.

Connecting the World Through Gaming (02:52)

In Seoul, Korea, Song Jae-Kyeong designs online games. A comic inspires the game "Lineage;" it becomes a social phenomenon. Gaming is the most visible and most vast virtual reality.

Thinking in the Virtual World (05:06)

In San Francisco, Philip Rosedale creates "Second Life." This game has significantly changed lives for a couple in the Netherlands. Raph Koster believes that virtual worlds can provide a deeper sense of self as well as communication.

Virtual World Heals "Vibrating Ball" (04:05)

In Hong Kong, gaming provides a happy haven for Edgai Leung. He spends 10 hours a day in front of the monitor and has made many online friends. Gaming has given him back self-confidence.

Transforming How We See Life (03:12)

In Hollywood, toy designer, Ian, uses online games to relax. Most people who play are average people in everyday life. Online gaming provides a platform for escaping judgment. One man shares the dynamics of his gaming character.

Escaping From Reality (02:06)

In Shanghai, Liu Wei discusses how her priorities changed once she starting participating in the virtual world. "Zhang-tu" provides free gaming but provides opportunities to buy one's way to a higher level character.

Real Money for Virtual Goods (03:58)

In Los Angeles, Brock Pierce has been a gamer his entire life. He founds IGE in 2001, creating a place for gamers to sell their excess inventory. The transactional volume is a multi-billion dollar sector. Julian Dibbel and Alan Debonneville weigh in on "RMT."

A "Gold Farm" Boss (02:10)

In China, Wang Yi Nan turns his gaming hobby into work. Nan looks forward to the day when his business is recognized as legitimate. Nearly 14% of gaming customer complaints is about being scammed by "RMTers."

Virtual Economy/Real Economy (02:59)

In 2005, Mr. Chu leaves the gaming business after "Blizzard" pulls the strings on his business; they have complete control over a virtual world. He would like to rejoin the gaming world when "gold farming" is a healthy business. People shape the virtual world.

Anthropological Gaming? (02:11)

At the University of California, Tom Boellstorff studies the virtual world from an anthropologist's perspective. People use cultural beliefs in their virtual world. The top things that people spend money on are clothing and hair.

Online Social and Healing Center (02:27)

Soldiers returning from war find solace in the virtual world. Developers create a warm and comforting space for returning veterans to enjoy. They can also go on a warrior's journey to find tools for assimilating back into culture.

Generational Distinction (03:32)

Technology changes people and reality rapidly; however, the Metaverse is still in an embryonic state. Michael Anissimov would upload his mind to virtual space for intelligence enhancement. Virtual experiences may be more compelling than real ones.

Real vs. Informational Experiences (04:27)

Michael Heim, known as the Philosopher of Cyberspace, shares his views on the importance of virtual worlds as a new medium for human expression. "Virtual worlds are cognitively high cost," but provide a new median for problem solving.

Creating Personal Virtual Worlds (02:15)

Reality can be fairly narrow and virtual worlds allow one to experience things he or she would not normally participate in. Virtual worlds can be a very powerful median and provide meaning in lives.

Credits: Inside the Metaverse (00:41)

Credits: Inside the Metaverse

For additional digital leasing and purchase options contact a media consultant at 800-257-5126
(press option 3) or

Inside the Metaverse

DVD (Chaptered) Price: $169.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $254.93
3-Year Streaming Price: $169.95



“Creating worlds is what I do,” says Richard Bartle, virtual world pioneer and cocreator of the first MUD, or multiuser dungeon game. In this program, Bartle, Second Life creator Philip Rosedale, and others involved in digital reality discuss the development and philosophy of online gaming worlds. A couple who spend at least 30 hours a week on Second Life is among the enthusiasts who explain what makes the metaverse so compelling, and the founder of IGE weighs in on “RTM”—the practice of paying real money for virtual goods and services. Finally, Michael Heim, known as "the philosopher of cyberspace," shares his views on the importance of virtual worlds as a new medium for human expression. (Portions in other languages with English subtitles, 52 minutes)

Length: 53 minutes

Item#: BVL45483

ISBN: 978-1-62102-268-8

Copyright date: ©2010

Closed Captioned

Reviews & Awards

“Provides a good introduction to the subject matter, and raises a number of interesting questions...”  Science Books & Films


“An excellent introduction to the landscape of virtual worlds (especially for adults who have not grown up with online gaming).”  Educational Media Reviews Online  

Performance Rights

Prices include public performance rights.

Only available in USA and Canada.