-A-n-t-i- Virus rusiV -i-t-n-A-
This is an immersive environment filled with feelings of fear, anxiety and insecurity. the inspiration of creating this environment came through the thought of FEAR. I find there are lots of emotions that occurred in our life, they are mostly caused through FEAR.
Most of the time we are just afraid to do things, such as trying something, trusting people around as, that fear makes us blind to do stupid things for self-protection.
So I create this immersive place filled of things that we might be afraid of. The message that want to deliver to players is: Fear can be both sided. Things that we are terrified of, might have the same impact on it as well. That's the reason behind why I created a universe covered fully with virus. FEAR and Viruses have common personalities, spreading rapidly. But viruses attack our immune systems and fear change our personalities.
So in this world, the movements of Virus are uncertain and unexpected just like we are. Nothing should be or can be defined in this environment. I purposely add the human whispering sounds on the virus to confuse players about the definitions and identities. The important aspects are the interactions between the known and unknown things which create an atmosphere of fear.
This is the main concept of this work. I try to deliver this ideas through the following parts in this scene:
Once you start the scene, first you will see you are in a rimless universe with things look like corpuscles pattern in the background. But instead of red color, I use a green skybox. Red has the meaning of anxiety, enthusiasm and fear. I don’t want to use colors as a hint for people who come into this environment. I hope they can feel that through encountering with the creatures in this world by themself.
Virus Nr. 1!
One huge, black and spotted Virus slowly floats to you, looking like it’s a bit curious of something showing up here all of a sudden, which is You. Then when it sees you, both of you seems to be afraid of each other. It shows it’s anxiety and fear by floating back a few of steps. After few seconds, it will try again to come a litte bit closer to you, you do the same thing as well. In the end of this part, you go through its body and see everything from inside to outside.
I hope this part can give you a first experience of trying, building a first connection of trust. This is what we do to show the trust in real life. We open the door of our heart or our mind to let people you trust come inside. Sometimes we want to do it desperately, because we are lonely and isolated just like what you see in this corona world. But once someone come into your heart, the connections of trusts go broken, the swords for protections grow. Hedgehog’s dilemma, a challenge of human intimacy, we meet this situation all the time when we come closer to someone. This is also the idea I want to show through the next movement of Virus Nr. 1!.
When you inside the Virus Nr. 1!, you can crystal-clearly see everything in- and outside of it, which make you feel safer for a while. Then you come out from inside to outside all of a sudden. This movements of coming out gives a hint that the first try doesn’t work out, just like what happened all the time in our reality. At this moment your perspective move to another creature beside. End of the first part. And in the next part of this scene, you will encounter more and experience differently.
A sphere with foggy texture floats in and surrounds you.
Virus Nr. 2!
The 2. Creature is floating outside of the foggy bubble, it moves its antennas constantly, seems like it is trying to reach you or to float inside the foggy bubble. This time it doesn’t even come closer to you in the beginning, after merges into the bubble a bit, it’s scared of it and you, you both stop going forward. It moves unexpectedly towards you and keep the distance from you again couple times, trying to test you and then make the decision to come closer to you in the end. Its first try works good, and it tries again coming really really close to you. This rapid movement breaks the connection between you and your perspective will be turned to the other side. Again, all you can see is a near-empty universe.
I hope a similar situation in our daily life can through this experience reflected: Building connections is all about trying, testing and tolerating. When people come closer to you in a short time, feeling of distrust appears and unneeded fear break the motivations for us to go forward.
Virus The Eye
The third creature you are going to meet is a rounded-shape virus with an eye on it, which makes it look less like a virus. It has more antennas, which let it move much faster and more active. It looks more friendly because of its appearance as well. However this time you won’t come closer to each other at all. It shows interest in you and turning around showing itself to you. It merges in and out of the foggy bubble again and again. Finally when you try to come closer to it, you will see a giant antenna of it ,which you did not see it in the beginning. You turn away from the eye creature after what you saw based on intuition. The intuition give you feelings of fear, distrust and make you keep others in distance without reasons, and we gradually get used to that, a perfect self-protection mode, that makes us blink, make decision without even try to knowing reasons behind.
In around 15 seconds you will see nothing in this universe full of fog. I hope in this moment players can take few seconds to breathe and to feel and think about what they just experienced.
You will see a huge nest-shaped construction showing up from the fog. It could be a creature, a construction or anything you want it to be. It’s not important what it is. It plays a relative passive role here for you to try coming closer and exploring actively by yourself. So the next things going to happen is, you will go into this red construction and go through it. Once you reach the end of it, you will rotate 180 degree to see the whole structure of this nest. Thing is going to be a bit faster from here on, you will feel like start understanding and seeing what is around you, but at the same time you are going to be drawn out of the foggy bubble and out of everything.
Now, all you can see is the empty universe again.
The last part of the scene is, you will see two sphere look like eye merge into the universe, looking at you directly. Eyes are always the most fascinating things for me because they deliver emotions, feelings and every informations you can get from a person. Interesting is, eyes are at the same time the most difficult thing to be read. This is the reason why I want to let players to be watched, observed and read in the end of the scene. I want them to feel confused, and confusion give us motivations to think and rethink. By doing this I think we can find answers or just some unanswered questions in our own versions. So after this very short time of making players feel confused, they will see a human model appears inside.
I use a human model here to bring players back to the topic of fear again after seeing couple of creatures in the previous parts. I want to bring players back to our daily life, the things we used to have fear of are things related to human. I hope when we take a view back to our human we can really think about: what we are afraid of? why we need to be afraid of? And why we make decision to turn away from them before we have not even given a try to understand it?
We label things, people and situations to fight against our fear. Giving things definitions just for making ourselves feel safer. For example the things we see in my immersive world. We will prefer to name it and pretend like we know it. Truth is, we definitely don’t.
And those actions and habits we have, bring those topics to our life, for example, fail of communications, lost of friendships, lost of opportunities to see more and experience more, or even xenophobia.
All models are made and rigged inside 3D Blender(2.80), Textures are painting with Adobe Illustration, Photoshop, and edited inside 3D Blender.
Model_ Virus Nr.1. Virus Nr.2. are the same model with different textures on it.
Texture of Virus Nr.1! Texture of Virus Nr.2!
Model_ Virus The Eye
Texture of Virus The Eye
Model_ The Face
(1) Instead of planing and sketching things out before doing, I experimented and played around with different tools in Blender and Unity. I really expect that I can know more about their possibilities, and have more power to manipulate these tools in the future.
(2) lack of rigging skills makes it really hard to animate my models as smoothly as I expect.
(3) The polygons are ugly and I should reduce them a lot.
(4) Lack of Lighting skills. The shadings of my models are messed up while experimenting different lights and importing models into Unity.
(5) The main scene should be separated into different scenes, which I think by changing scenes can give players a sense of depth and more varieties. I would like to keep learning on that and trying using scripts in Unity in my future works, to have more flexibilities and more freedom.
(6) Sounds editing in Unity is the very important thing I should improved. For this time, I didn’t put any sounds in Unity, All the background sounds, sound effects are added and edited in Final cut pro.
(7) after experimenting a lot with Timelines and testing the scene with FPSFrames per second Controller, in the end I actually deleted FPSFrames per second Controller and use Camera when I made the final version, which I think it can show a relative completed environment with the better consistency of the work, but at the same time I don't think it is a good idea to animated the perspective of the players. so in my next work, when it is possible to try out VR works in DBL lab again, I will use FPSFrames per second Controller and make interactions parts with scripts instead of just animating. Attribution
Models made inside 3D-Blender (Textures- Illustration) visual composition, VR, Animation - Unity
Background skybox- Unity free asset
Sounds: Analog and digital sound editing: analog synthesizer sounds are made with Joel Schäfer
Sounds edited inside Ableton 10
Women whisper sound- downloaded from Free Sound.org https://freesound.org/people/drotzruhn/sounds/405210/
Come Back whisper sound - downloaded from Free Sound.orghttps://freesound.org/people/LadyImperatrix/sounds/503270/
Zombie whisper sound- downloaded from Free Sound.org https://freesound.org/people/drotzruhn/sounds/405210/
Images of work process in Unity