Unreal // VR Chat

Here’s a few stills from my floating Unreal nightclub!

Three women dance in absolute sync to the Donna Summer track, “I Feel Love” on a water dance floor under a series of doorways, while fireworks go off into the water ceiling and floating windows illuminate different colors through the thick fog.

Between the Starter Content and Example Content packages, I had a lot to play around with, and the only thing I made was my hip-hop dancing lady in Mixamo/Fuse. This was the first time I worked with particle systems, and I adjusted the smoke one to give it a more foggy effect, which helped bring out the lights more.

VR EXPLORATIONS:

The Lab was extremely immersive physically, to the point where certain characters made me step back a bit, and one popped out in way that was too scary and real. The bow and arrow game was great with the haptic feedback, and I liked how the experience played with scale.

VRChat!!! completely blew my mind. Unlike The Lab, it was more emotionally immersive- it’s is a game-changer for me. I’ve always wanted to try social VR and have been really interested in its future applications, and the first time trying it was beyond everything I had imagined and hoped it’d be.  My sense of embodiment wasn’t perfect, but good enough to feel present and lose track of time in this vortex. The subject of anonymity is particularly interesting, as it’s not actally truly anonymous with its use of real mics (although I’m sure users could blend their voices). It was jarring and somewhat terrifying at the beginning, but it started to feel somehow empowering in a strange way- encountering trolls and knowing that they could say whatever they wanted without being able to actually see me or physically affect me. I hear and read a lot about the potential harm and detrimental dynamics of social VR harassment, and yet I came out of the experience feeling more in control somehow. And then there were users who were actually great to talk to and explore other worlds with.  Even in my memory, these experiences and encounters feel very real, and whether that’s something scary or exciting, it’s clear after trying VRChat that very soon, these virtual spaces will be exponentially populated with more and more users.