Metaverse

Welsh government ‘wastes’ taxpayer cash on ‘PS2-looking’ metaverse

The Welsh government reportedly sunk £45,000 ($57,000) into a ‘PS2-looking’ metaverse project that was branded as ‘absolutely wank’ and ‘a waste of taxpayers’ money’ by users.

On May 13, the Welsh government announced that “Wales has become the first UK nation to launch in the metaverse,” revealing a 3D virtual experience that would supposedly give visitors a taste of the attractions and landmarks the country has to offer.

When it was launched, the project, which was commissioned by ‘Visit Wales,’ was dubbed by authorities as “a trial being used to test reach to even wider audience bases.”

However, the plan was poorly received from the off and X users immediately picked up on the world’s poor-quality visuals, describing it as looking like a ‘PS2 game’ or ‘Roblox.’

One user said, “This honest to god looks like a challenge from The Apprentice where they have 30 mins to put together a digital experience” while another posted, “What’s the welsh for ‘this looks absolutely wank.’”

Another sarcastically alluded to the failures of previous metaverse projects, saying, “This is going to be fantastic for the two people who think the metaverse is a good idea! Even better for the one guy of those two who actually uses it! Great job!”

Some, predictably, took issue with the use of taxpayers’ money. “How much of our money was wasted on this?” one asked.

Read more: What it was like to have Quontic Bank’s metaverse pool party all to myself

According to a freedom of information request (FOI) from an investigative reporter at The Times, £16,000 ($20,000) was spent on ‘technical development, license fees, and hosting for the next six months,’ and £30,000 ($38,000) was allocated to promoting the metaverse as part of a ‘Visit Wales’ digital campaign.

It remains to be seen if the investment proves worthwhile, or even popular. As Protos has discovered, some metaverse projects are almost completely empty.

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