It was only a matter of time before cannabis and virtual reality (VR) crossed paths — since, of course, both are complementary means of altering your perception of reality.
Entrepreneur Dan Braunstein, founder of events and edible dining company Grassfed, is the brain behind this destined duo, combining carefully selected weed and VR games for a high-end gaming experience. “Cannabis and gaming were always good friends,” he says. “I know many of my friends that love gaming, and love cannabis, and love to combine both of them.”
On Friday, Braunstein launched his cannabis gaming event for up to 60 people at a secret loft in downtown Los Angeles. For $45 entry, guests could sample edibles, dance to psychedelic rock, Greek, Arab, funk, and hip-hop beats, play pool, and choose from nearly 150 VR scenarios to dive into, be it an amusement park or the Great Wall of China.
“We know that cannabis enhances all our senses — touching, hearing, visuals, smelling, and tasting,” Braunstein tells Jane Street. “To me, any experience that I can combine with cannabis, and music of course, would be awesome, and I always liked VR.”
While the event was smoke free, Braunstein had five different sponsors supplying vaporizers for a vape bar, as well as infused chocolates, brownies, and ice cream. They offered seven different strains, mostly sativas and sativa-dominant hybrids. “I don’t think that indica suits most of our events, since we’re looking for a more creative, giggly, happy, energetic kind of feeling,” Braunstein says of the sedative, body-high cannabis variety.
And despite the stereotype that pairs gaming with bros, Braunstein said his event was almost split evenly among men and women. He was surprised how many women took to the zombie hunt game. In addition to scary or fantastical VR options, the event also offered more creative games, such as VR painting, which is more relaxing.
VR for Braunstein, who puts on infused dinners and other 420-friendly events, is another entry point into the cannabis space. For starters, weed and VR play off each other’s psychedelic qualities. But moreover, it’s an example of weed’s versatility, its ability to touch various other fields, including tech and gaming.
While Braunstein’s VR cannabis party may be the first event of its kind, he’s not the only one to combine weed and VR. Seattle-based Kush Tourism, for instance, provides VR experiences that offer a 360-degree view of the cannabis cultivation facilities at Dawg Star Cannabis, while customers at Oregon’s Finest can also take a VR tour of the cannabis strains, growing in a five-by-five foot Grow Tent.
“I feel that VR is part of the future, as well as cannabis,” says Braunstein. “I see the synergy in both of them.”