MOON CRUIZER VR (WIP)
A Sci-Fi inspired VR riding experience located on a futuristic lunar environment.
- Capstone Project for AR/VR Development & 3D Graphics Program with NYU Tandon School of Engineering
- Design and build a seamless riding experience for non-technical players to drive and listen to music around unique space environments with intuitive XR Interactivity and controls without making the user nauseous.
- Secure $1.5M Investment to complete professional v1 build, marketing, release and continued support for project to all VR stores
Design Systems & MoodBoards
For the 3D architectural and design elements, I decided to go with a combination of parametric and organic fluidity-based design styles to create a futuristic world that feels less machine and more organic. Additionally, colored RGB accents provide a bit of energy and will be used to highlight areas and objects of interest for the user to interact with.
UI/UX Interactions in VR
Designing a VR Motorcycle-Type Intractable presented a number of new UX challenges and opportunities — below are a few examples of specific interactions designed to make the experience feel more natural to users
The brake and throttle hand pose animations were necessary to configure in order to make the user feel like he or she is naturally grabbing the handlebars of the vehicle. Fixed rotational & lever-type interactable scripts were then created to mimic the mechanical interfaces on a sports bike to control the throttle and brake respectively.
Horizontal rotational inputs across the Z-Axis and Vertical acceleration inputs across the X-Axis were borrowed from existing keyboard & mouse input controllers and then re-mapped and re-calibrated to the XR Interaction Toolkit's input system.
Because freedom of movement and a smooth experience across the environment is highly valued, we are currently testing a continuous movement provider while the user is outside of the vehicle and roaming the lunar environment. We plan to add settings to allow for the option for teleportation should continuous movement prove to be more nauseating for users.
Prototyping & Feedback
TEST 1 OBJECTIVES:
Measure interest from non-technical, first-time VR users
Observe user engagement and find out what they're responsive (and not responsive) to.
Track length of time users are engaged in VR without getting nauseous and/or bored with the experience.
Check on user's emotional response
Find issues with motorcycle interaction and steering
Working with a few non-technical users, I was able to test and gain valuable feedback on the initial prototype test of the Moon Cruizer controller and the environment.
This provided valuable insight on what users enjoy doing inside the environment, what they're curious to explore (that may not yet be available), and what they may struggle with inside the experience.
VR Design Iterations
In the last year I've continued to iterate and improve on existing 3D designs in order to accommodate the complexity of VR UX needs with organic and fluid-yet progressive style of design.
For example, in our latest model (Located closest to the right in the images) -- I have iterated past designs to now include an ignition button, separate front & rear wheels in the 3D FBX file in order to target separate controls for horizontal inputs (front wheel) and forward acceleration (rear wheel) within the XR Input Manager Controller Script. The latest model also includes a more fluid placement of the primary ignition button -- programmed to start the vehicle, release it from it's static position, and lock the user's XR Origin Rig onto the Vehicle as it moves.
Moon Cruizer Asset
Left Brake doesn’t slow bike down
Right Hand Throttle rotation doesn’t correspond to acceleration
Leaning left and right on bike isn’t 1:1 with the user
Haptics don’t toggle on/off in the moon scene
Need to update to MC3 design
Bike doesn’t drive forward anymore if you get out
Interactive HUD display for accelerometer & music player
Music player buttons aren’t responsive sometimes
Music player in an awkward location - accidentally interact with the UI while you’re turning bike on or off
Watch AR Menu
Ray Interaction toggle when opened
Need to update UI for hover response
Back to Lobby turns camera off and game stops
Exit Game fades out but doesn’t exit
XR Rig Collider phases thru walls and colliders in current scenes instead of being more realistic and preventing movement
Need to build landscaping and better urban layout for spaceport and settlement 2
Need to re-apply moon gravity and fix drag issue with bike
Moon scene occlusion culling
Tree Geometry optimization
Terrain displacement optimization
Mesh optimize complex geometries (bio pavilion, Forum design, apartment, Music Player, MC models 1-3, spaceship, differential fits)
Credits, Tools & Assets Used
3D Architecture & Environments: Zahid Pasha
Music: Zahid Pasha, Listen
FX: Splice, Gadd.Games
Props & Interior Modeling: Zahid Pasha, NYU
XR Rigging & Hand Animatons: Zahid Pasha, NYU
Textures: Zahid Pasha
Shaders: Zahid Pasha
Scripts: Zahid Pasha, NYU
Space Trees: Andrei Okolokoulak
Bio-Morphic Pavilion: Yervant Meguerditchian
Motorcycle Controller & Physics (Keyboard Inputs): Gadd.Games - https://www.gadd.games/
Mars Terrain: Egamea - https://www.egamea.com/
Starfield Background: Dilapidated Meow - http://www.dilapidatedmeow.com/
Sci-Fi Neon Room: Alex Merqury - https://www.artstation.com/user-312
Camera Path Creator: David Lawrence - https://www.linkedin.com/in/david-lawrence-7999bb115/
Mesh Optimizer: IndieChest - https://nebuch.itch.io/
Sci-Fi Conference Room Assets: EditPoint - http://editpointarch.blogspot.com/
Simplest Mesh Baker: Kovnir - https://github.com/Kovnir/