I love the concept of VR what its all about. Escaping to a whole new world while standing in one place? Sign me up. But I have only experienced VR a handful of times and was only able to take part in experiences that were more stationary and non- interactive. In terms of all the VR technology that I’ve tried, my experience is quite limited. Aside from a couple of cinematic, non-interactive experiences I haven’t really dabbled in virtual reality. So, to have one of my first opportunities with it to be where I was able to build and create all my experiences within it myself was an incredible experience!
The first software I tried (But was unfortunately unable to export my .obj from) was VRCat. I really enjoyed using it from the start. I could already see its potential early on as I quite easily caught onto the software without a tutorial or instruction. The Vive was also very easy to use, and one thing that I definitely think made the experience all the better was the incredible range of motion the Vive allowed me to have. I built a small castle in the first 5 minutes of using the software and while a lot of VR rigs only allow you to really look around an object, I was able to have a genuinely immersive experience! I was able to walk all the way around and it look inside it which was really cool. I then made a tunnel out of some torus’s and walked through it. The world building possibilities in this software seem endless and extremely user friendly and I would absolutely love to try it again another time. If only I could just figure out how to export the objects then my experience would have been perfect!
The next software I tested out was Google Blocks. I was excited for this one in particular because when researching the software the night before, I got really caught up in the beautiful low-poly art they had on the site. As I am a big fan of projects that use low-poly assets, I was really looking forward to trying it out! At first, it took me a while to figure out the software as I had never used an Oculus Rift before, but once I got the hang of it, I loved every minute of it! I really loved the free hand tool (I can’t remember exactly what it was called). I loved the fact that I could draw shapeless, meaningless floating “noodles” and had so much fun with it! I also built a tower of toruses and experimented with the colour tools in that as well. In terms of which software I enjoyed more, I have to say that VRCat really captured me more with what I could do within the software. The fact that I was able to walk around the world I just created and interact with it was amazing and it was the one that really got me excited about this project and working with VR technology!
Travelling While Black
Unfortunately, I had to leave before trying out “Travelling While Black” but I was luckily able to find a recording of the gameplay on YouTube. I’ve been heavily involved in the advocacy of black people and education about black history for the longest time. Going to a prominently white private school, I always felt the need to give my perspective on things and help explain my point of view as the one taught to me in class was not my own. To be able to immerse myself into a place where I feel I am physically in a room with people who share my view of the world and offer their own perspectives and insights is incredible. I wish that I had experienced the 360 videos in VR but even watching it through someone else’s gameplay was enough to make me feel something, and was enough to make me think. It was like history right in front of you but instead of reading about it in a textbook, you were there experiencing it, and listening to the people who had to endure it themselves. I would love my next experience in VR to be with this game!