“The Bittersweet” – Log Fifteen

Let’s add some more audio…

In this video I experiment with the spatial audio for VR in Unity, added sound to the clock, to the turning pages and the opening glass door.

When I was a little boy  I used to be fascinated when the lip-synch  was out of time in the movies and was consistently trying to duplicate it. I created a dis-temporal audio file in audacity and added it to the dinner animation.  As well I added a tiny particle system to the radio to highlight the most powerful audio source of the scene.

I had so much fun doing this with one of my favorite works, Good bye for now “The Bittersweet”, Thank you for reading.

The immersive Lab – Log Four

Technical challenges so far..

When working with Google cardboard you allways need to take on consideration the raw processing power of mobile devices, and be wise on how to distribute tasks, in this Blog I will be discussing by sections what challenges I faced this past two week..

  • Main Screen:
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I added an electrophoresis gel result as the sphere material, it looks great!

The Main screen was  not a challenge, but it was an interesting start point to understand the Google cardboard Hyerarchy when it comes to UI, for example the Google cardboard gaze input has two ways of interacting with game objects, one dternines if it is interacting with an graphic element (A button), the other uses the raycaster to check if the object you are interacting with is an interactable 3D model.

  • Still Images section:

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At first in this section my approach was to create a scene for sphere and change scenes by clicking the menu, however this makes you have to wait longer to jump for one scene to the next and I wasnt feeling confortable about having to wait for long when loading it in the mobile.

My seccond approach did not work better, this time I decided to create 6 bubbles and swith cameras… This was a mess, loading times were hughe and it was harder to organize all my items and make sense of the scene, Then I tried to change the material everytime but the shader that change the vertex normals of my spheres did not accepted a change in the color of the material.. (or something like that.. I am still confussed).

So finally I recurred to the idea of creating the spheres, by then having the camera to change position with a script and discovered that I did not work before because before moving the camera of thegoogle cardboard you needed to place it in a empty object so it works like a tripod (Yeah!… still confussed about that too… Sigh!)

  • The Video section:

Capturados

The video had to be stitched in the propietary software provided by Samsung and the software was a bit simple so I had to take the video somewhere else (Unity) to reduce the resolution and do other chnages here and there. I took me like a week to understand why the video was playing in my pc but not in my mobile and the answer was that the movie texture mesh doesnt get along with google cardboard, so you need to make some changes before it runs properly.

 

The activity section:

ANd finally this last week has been all about organizing assets for the animated section, so I can make them have the least polygon count possible so they can be used in a google cardboard device.

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First I learned how to construct the bones, build controlers to rig  and skin a hand in 3ds max, and learned techniques to take 3D models I found online and clean them with different tools for a better performance, next week we will tak about the animation.

The immersive Lab – Log Three

Early design choices..

In this log I would like to take the opportunity to talk about the initial design choices and show some screens and comment on them.

The first environment I tested was the cube, it has a room cube, baked lights a Player element (w/ Google virtual reality interactive elements for Cardboard and Daydream ) , as well as 4 interact-able game objects with their respective canvas and UI elements (1) “Meet us” – With a movie logo, this one has access to the 360 movies, (2) “see the lab” this one has a access to the 360 lab tour, (3) Activity – With a Thunder Logo – this one has access to the 3D interactive animations.

My general feeling was that, even tho this was a nice environment felt a bit different to what I had envisioned for this project.

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I tough probably a sphere would be more pleasant to work with, so I resourced to a sphere and used an shared that would map the material at the inside of the game object sphere, rather than at the outside, and added a material relevant to the theme, kept and modified the “Player” object from Google VR as well as the interactive SDK elements, it was easier that remaking everything from scratch.

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I was not happy with the color choices, so I tried again. This time I selected as a background an electrophoresis gel  result that I found online under creative commons, I think this results when colored are quite kinetic and beautiful. After that I proceeded to collect colour samples and a used the same colors for the UI, added an ambient tune, a rotating script and Voila!, the sphere rotate on the Y axis, I think it looks great!.

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As well I stitched some 360 pictures, and added to the the center of my sphere and added a “Go back” to main menu UI, I think the images look great at the inside of the sphere. I had some issues with the video, and the orientation of the images but I will be talking about them in the next blog thank you for reading…

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The immersive Lab – Log Two

This week I had the pleasure to visit the teaching lab at the school of life sciences of Glasgow university, where I for the first time used the Samsung gear 360 camera to record the videos and 360 stills I will use to construct the application.

One of the biggest challenges I faced that day was  to communicate the ideas I had for this shoot to get everyone in the same page, that is a real skill that only the experience can give, as directing a piece and being in charge of the equipment at the same time can be challenging, I prepared scripts and pseudo-scripts for the students with anticipation, it was loads of hard work, but I feel it did pay in the end.

I was quite lucky to have such a group of good talented students to help me put the vision I had together, as well as the lecturers who helped me on setting everything up (thank you ladies you are the best! ) , I will discuss in the next blog how I will implement this images on UNITY, thank you for reading.

Astronomy is Awesome! (2017)

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3Ds Max Modelling and animation For Unity

I created this 3D models to as my first 3ds max models and animation, Lego’s are awesome and I have had always loved them, so I was trying to get a bit of a surreal  and find an imaginative way to say you can go to the stars and excite people about sciences!, it was really fun to model and I was really delighted to find this new skills I have learned. Please watch the video of the full animation below!

 

“A journey of Modern Art” – Log Three

Fast forward a month after some play sessions and user tests , here we are with the final version of the assets. In this log we will take a look at a example of the assets designed for the artists profiles (Journeys), and the board.

The artists journey :

This cards represent the timeline of the artists lives, in this time line we can appreciate what were the most important points in their lives, and the pieces this moments influenced. there are 12 artists journeys however we are only showing This one as an example.

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The Events :

In every board game you need elements that bring the story forward, in this case we created event cards, serving the purpose of adding more to the storytelling and teaching about the daily life of an struggling artist or art pieces that would be interesting for the learning.

History
History Cards

A history card is on order when the player pawn falls in a blue tile, this are cards that move the game forward by giving (or taking )to the players creativity points (the in game currency).

Charades
Charades

A Charade card is on order when the player pawn falls in a red tile, this are cards that move the game forward by having a mini game where player might if they win, earn point to advance or loose some if they loose.

Dailies
Dailies

A Charade card is on order when the player pawn falls in a Yellow tile, this are cards that move the game forward by using funny fictional common places of a struggling artist life.

The final design of the board :

This board represents the places /cities our artists visited or lived in and they are connected to the timeline cards, at the same time the boards connects the artist to certain events that may have or may not affected their life, The board is composed of cities and roads (Parts of the country were that city exists..)

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“A journey of Modern Art” – Log Two

In this last two weeks we have defined the basics of our game, we have taken inspiration of other games and added some mechanics to include didactic gamification about this 3 focus topics People, Events and places.

JOMA

The initial board looks like this, in this game the board is constructed using as reference the cities where the maestros of modern art started their career or were born, as well we worked in the game mechanics and rules.

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“A journey of Modern Art” – Log One

Welcome to my new blog section, this blog has been created to record the production of my latest enterprise. As part of my  “Msc. Serious games and virtual reality”, we are taking a core on game design, in this course we play board games, we read academic papers about games and talk about games as a whole and the benefits they can bring to us when properly used.

The brief of this project was to create a game about “Modern Art” at open interpretation. This of course is not as easy as it seems.”Serious games” have a purpose in the life of many living forms, lion cubs learn how to embrace their preys, Antelopes learn how to run, and human can learn all range of things like social skills, Architecture, math, languages or economics.

To me serious games are like mobile apps, they are a solution for a couple of things within a field, meaning that they can do only a couple of things but they do it really good if they are well designed. For example with Google maps you could find out how to get somewhere or where to find yourself in the city, as well by asking to your friend to share his/her position you would know her/his location. Same applies to any game.

For example by playing “Monopoly”,  The mechanics of the game dictate the flow and when the game loop happens.For every turn you are allowed to move on your journey, and trade earning or losing money. The game mechanic of this games allows it to flow in a way were people  having fun will associate emotions to particular memories during this sessions this way the learning becomes deeper in trading, counting and social business like interactions.

To make a game serious you only need a goal!

To us the starting point to beat this brief was to find a problem to tackle, and the more we read or learned about modern art,  the more we realized how little we knew. And when speaking with our peers we found a couple of issues related to this topic that were closer to our heart, and so we decided that we needed to draw people closer to modern art using didacto-ludic elements.

The premise is to use a game frame to make people understand that a person by itself cannot create a piece, for a piece of art to happen it has to be influence by events, places and people. because art is not innocent, art happens because it has a purpose and a message to convey.

Modern Art  revolves around the artistic work produced between the periods of 1860s and 1970s, in this time after the invention of the Photo-camera artists could stop recording history and start experimenting with the aesthetics, this way leaving behind the traditions of the past.

To conclude this Log, we have decided we will call this game “A journey of modern Art”, and this will be a way of allowing people to get closer to art pieces and ideas that changed the world.

“The Bittersweet” – Log Fourteeen

This is the poster presented at the “2nd Virtual Social Inetraction workshop” omn the 12th – 13th, july 2016.

On regards of the idea of bringing a life perspective like the one of an autis- tic person. and placing (a non autistic) person as a protagonist in a IVR medium. using hand tracking, music and a framework of a hidden illness, has stimulated the imagination and emotions of the user making this evident in the written feedback.

A situation that is both challenging and in this case full of beauty, have been to our understanding a very welcome experience by everyone who has tested the IVR installation. and influenced by this we could say that the product we have created fulfills the original requirement.

On regards of the specifications for navigation using the leap motion it have been somehow positive but we know there is still some improvements to do. Probably the software should be upgraded to a new version of Leap motion and instead of V2 (The current core assets we are using) we could upgrade to ’Orion’ and experiment a bit more for a swifter motion.

Anyhow we consider that other features like UX using the Oculus rift imple- mentation, scenes mechanics and effects work well, making this product to function correctly according to initial specifications in the design.

Taking all this elements in account we conclude that this virtual relaity installation has been a success on bringing another perception to neurotypical people and opening a window into what can be done in IVR (immersive Virtual Reality).