• Unity Announces Project MARS For Improved AR Development During Unite Berlin keynote, new tools for AR development are revealed.
  • SpringboardVR Announces Partnership With VoodooVR Bringing turnkey virtual reality offerings to Europe.
  • E3 2018 Hands-On: Ghost Giant Is A Charming Puzzle Game About Friendship
    E3 2018 Hands-On: Ghost Giant Is A Charming Puzzle Game About Friendship

    Ghost Giant was one of the lucky few PSVR games that got some of the spotlight on Sony’s official PlayStation Blog a few days before E3 actually kicked off. Since we knew about the title going in, we had some idea about what to expect, and for the most part it met our expectations.

    When we first saw Ghost Giant, we had initially assumed it’d be a bit more fast-paced and blend puzzle elements with platforming segments, sort of like Turbo Button’s Along Together. What we found out at E3, though, is that it’s shaping up to actually be a pure puzzle game for the most part.

    The premise of Ghost Giant is that you are a large, lumbering ghost that only the main character can see. During our demo we got to meet him, a small cat boy named Louis, for the very first time. He’s walking along in his village and is hounded by bullies. Once he notices the player he cowers in fear and it’s up to you to convince him to give you a chance at being his friend. It’s a cute interaction and the voice acting is well done.

    He runs away to go hide in his room, which then kicks off the puzzle part of the experience. His door is locked and you’ve got to figure out how to get inside so that you can prove you’re not scary. Never mind the fact that breaking and entering is, in and of itself, a bit scary. It feels like an odd beginning to a friendship, but without seeing the full story in context it’s hard to cast judgement.

    I don’t want to overtly spoil too much even if it is an early game puzzle, but what you’ve got to do involves searching the environment (and I mean really leaning down, craning your neck, and looking around) for ways to manipulate things. You can pick up and move items in the world, spin buildings around, and interact with characters using indirect methods. For example, switching channels on an old man’s TV to something boring might cause him to fall asleep and drop what he’s holding.

    Generally speaking a good puzzle game will give you everything you need to figure things out without getting lost or confused for too long. Patience and attention to detail are key of course, but things should present themselves readily if you’re actively engaged. I’m a little worried the puzzles in Ghost Giant may end up being needlessly vague or obtuse. During my brief demo a developer needed to guide me a bit more than once because it just wasn’t clear what I was meant to be doing. Whether it was bad clue placement, poor visual indications, or just unclear level layouts.

    Once you get through to Louis though, the charm shines through again. All the little design hiccups faded away when he smiled at me for the first time.

    Near the end of the demo the bullies return and there’s a cute moment where I scare them off

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  • Liveblog: Unite Berlin 2018 – ‘How to Drive VR/AR Use Cases for Enterprises Using the Example of Volkswagen’ The story of how Volkswagen is using VR to make training for 10,000 of their production and logistics employees more accessible and effective - and more.
  • How Sheffield Doc/Fest 2018’s VR Showcase Bested Even E3
    How Sheffield Doc/Fest 2018’s VR Showcase Bested Even E3

    Dan Tucker is apologizing again. We’re stepping over cables, ducking under scaffolding and trying to hear each other over the drone of drilling on the first day of Sheffield Doc/Fest. Things are running a little late and the Alternate Realities Arcade, a staple feature of the festival that highlights VR and AR’s work in the documentary field, isn’t quite up to where it’s meant to be. Tucker points to a hole in the wall leading into a dark exhibition space and explains that an inflatable mushroom crowd will fill the gap, promoting Gabo Arora and Saschka Unseld’s nuclear disarmament piece, The Day The World Changed. There’s a sense that something special is just a few hours away from being born (and, as this 3D scan shows, it was), though right now tensions are a little high.

    But Tucker needn’t be so apologetic; it’s painfully clear that we’re on a late start simply because Doc/Fest is trying to make a VR exhibition unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. The actual work speaks to that.

    Frankly, Alternate Realities did more to validify VR’s artistic potential this year than the entire gaming industry could muster in an enormous LA-based convention hall running concurrently. In a backroom of the Trafalgar Warehouse in which the arcade is situated, a handful of experiences shown to me on laptops and mobile headset easily drowns out the busy work in the background.

    As always, Doc/Fest’s curated list of experiences is rarely an easy watch. This year’s arcade is made up of two floors that Tucker explains he pieced through in order to provide two different experiences. On the lower floor are installations that put you in the shoes of others, utilizing VR’s ability to help us take on new roles. In Porton Down, for example, I relieve the experiences of an ex-serviceman that was subjected to unconventional testing in the 50’s. I sit on a chair and complete reaction-based tests like pressing a button as quickly as possible while my vision becomes increasingly hazy. At the end of the experience, I’m shown that all of my data throughout has been tracked and that I myself have been a test subject. It was a sensation I will never forget.

    Other experiences delve deeper into the tricky landscape of mental anguish with harrowing efficiency. In Aaron Bradbury and Paul Mowbray’s Vestige I’m given a first-hand account of dealing with grief after a young woman loses her soulmate. Painted into reality with vibrant threads, the piece has a warm glow to its nostalgic memories that’s quickly stripped away as Lisa describes the pain of watching the man she loves die. Reality itself begins to scramble and, for a brief few moments, you feel yourself lost in her suffering in a way you might not on the big screen.

    Mind at War from VR artist Sutu has a similar effect. It tells the true story of Scott, who joins the military in the wake of 9/11 and only finds his decision to carry great personal cost. Brought to

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  • VR Memory Palace Platform Macunx Hits Rift, Vive For Free Today
    VR Memory Palace Platform Macunx Hits Rift, Vive For Free Today

    Macunx VR is set to deliver a new way to learn inside the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive later today.

    This new app from Aleksandar Kojic, Milos Kojic and publisher Linguisticator was funded on Kickstarter last year. It allows users to create their own virtual memory palaces. A memory palace is a way of organizing a user’s memories by first associating information with images and then placing them in an environment that allows you to systematically revisit and remember the information at an appropriate time. You can see how it works in the video below.

    So, say you wanted to remember all the different types of VR headsets out there. You might associate images with the Rift, Vive, PSVR, Go and others using objects that rhyme of sound like the given device. You could then place them around an environment familiar to you and memorize them as you tour your surroundings. In theory, this would help you to mentally revisit the palace later on when you need that information.

    To help with this, Macunx allows importing of 3D models from Google’s Poly platform that you can place on pedestals and other objects. You can also use fences and walls to steer yourself through a memory palace and summon 2D images from Pixabay, too. It’s an intriguing idea that could be beneficial to things like exam revision or job interviews.

    For now, Macunx VR is free to use as an Early Access buold, though that may change in the future.

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  • Why You Should Steal Yourself A Look At Grand Theft Auto V In VR It might not be official, but you can still enjoy GTA 5 in VR. GTA BOOM contributor Logan Smith goes through some of the best virtual experiences you can have in the title.
  • First Contact Entertainment Reveal More On Firewall Zero Hour In Interview VRFocus got the chance to catch up with the team at E3 2018 and learn more about the upcoming shooter.
  • Leap Motion Announces New Project North Star Demo New demo uses Table Tennis to show how new skills can be taught in AR.
  • Leap Motion’s New North Star Demo Brings Table Tennis To AR
    Leap Motion’s New North Star Demo Brings Table Tennis To AR

    Leap Motion has found a new use for its open source AR headset, North Star; table tennis.

    The hand-tracking specialist today revealed a new demo for its headset, which was announced last April. Whereas we’ve seen North Star handle advanced AR UI, table tennis showcases some other features of the headset. For starters, it allows the player to jump into a virtual game of the sport using a real table and a specialized paddle; the headset creates both the ball and an AI opponent for you to challenge.

    Using a hand gesture the player summons a virtual ball and then serves it just like they would a real one. The opponent, meanwhile, is designed to make only humanly possible returns, giving you a real game of table tennis without anyone there to practice with. Check it out in the video below.

    But what may first appear as a simple game has deeper implications about the future of AR training and beyond.

    “Eventually, as AR systems become more advanced and lifelike, we will be able to practice against “impossibly difficult” artificial opponents and use that intuition in the real world like never before,” Leap Motion’s Johnathon Selstad said in a blog post. “Current and near-future professions may be aided by advanced AR training systems that allow us to casually achieve levels of skill that previously required months of determined practice.”

    For now these demo is purely experimental, just like North Star itself.

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  • ¡Viva La Evolución! Blends Music and Technology A new 360-degree film takes a look at the Cuban rave scene through the eyes of one of its biggest influencers.
  • AR Enhances Musical Celebration of Women Getting the Vote Rhondda Rebel AR will get a premiere in Sessions House in Usk, Wales before touring the UK.
  • ARVRtech Ltd Seek Funding for immersive Learning Platform London-based AR and VR film seeks funding for immersive educational platform.
  • Life In 360°: Stop At The Serpentine Seclusion in a newly opened courtyard.
  • Go Behind The Scenes Of Arca’s Path In New Dev Story Trailer Learn more about the creation process of this upcoming virtual reality title.