03rd Jun2014
by AlexMonita


This will be the third Arts Academy that the Studio is a part of and the progress is beginning to show. In the past we’ve  had a table display in the Warner Grand lobby showcasing some of our 3D prints, OUYA games, and Unity projects. This year we put together a “tech demo” live on stage for all to see.

After receiving a development kit for the OCULUS Rift virtual goggles, everyone quickly saw how effect the device is at immersing the user into digital environments. The teens and I were pumped about developing something for the Oculus as our on-stage “performance” for Arts Academy 2014.


Starting simple I developed a workflow to recreate the “red room” in the studio where I hold game design classes. The teens broke up the tasks of modeling, texturing, and finalizing a game ready scene. Google’s sketchup was used to recreate simple objects to scale, then the objects were textured and finalized in Blender 3D where advanced modeling can be done before being consolidated in Unity 3D.


The result was amazing! once the scene was light baked in unity the resemblance to the actual room was astonishing. The teens chose to continue with the rest of the studio and after just 6 days of class the teens had the majority of it finished.


We then utilized a software called Skanect to digitally scan the teens with the Xbox kinect  into the virtual scene they had created. The resulting models where then placed in the environments and animated using motion capture. Our motion capture system, ipi motion capture, uses the same kinects to recreate the student’s performances so that they can have their virtual selves walk and talk.


The entire studio walk-through was completed in time for the Arts Academy and was made stage-ready by broadcasting the user’s experience to a giant screen on the Warner Grand stage for the audience to follow along.

The following video shows the live demo on stage:


This video demonstrates a little more of what went into the project:


I couldn’t be more proud to see this group of teens work together to bring this amazing project to life. I hope the future brings more of the same!



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