Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality is appearing in many forms these days. Google Cardboard, GearVR to HTC Vive and Oculus Rift - there are many different headsets to choose from to experience VR. Media for these viewers normally requires stereoscopic, and often 360 degree, projections to be created. This can be a complicated process even though the ideas are fairly easy to understand and is even more challenging when it comes to video.

The team at BlendFX in Leipzig have come up with a process that allows Blender modelled environments to be converted into VR media which can then be viewed using VRAIS, their viewer application. Currently the app is available for Android, Apple and standard desktop platforms. Details can be found here www.vrais.io.

I have prepared several environments that can be viewed using VRAIS, and can be viewed in their public gallery. An example scene can be viewed here.

An alternative to the stereoscopic environments is an immersive 360 degree 2 dimensional projection. These projections are missing the 3D element of stereoscopic projections but are still interesting to produce and experience.

Recently YouTube has added support for these types of projection on Chrome and YouTube for Android.

Google has also developed code for viewing VR content on the web and mobile platforms. Below are several environments prepared in that format. They are still images of 360 degree environments that allow the viewer to change the viewing direction.

For the best experience view the images in full screen mode. Navigation on a desktop computer is achieved by using your mouse or the arrow keys on your keyboard to change the viewing direction. If you are using a tablet or phone then moving the device will control the direction of view although you can swipe across the display to change it as well.