The Mill has announced a new release that will see HTC Vive’s roomscale technology supported in a 360 degree music video for the first time. Partnering with Clark of Warp Records, a new virtual reality (VR) music video set to the British Electro artist’s track Hoova is now available for free via Steam.
The Hoova VR Experience explores a dark, dystopian future and investigates topics of isolation, dependency and identity in VR. One of the first music video experiences of its kind, using the new medium for both immersive and interactive content, Hoova VR Experience gives the viewer a chance to engage with the story while hearing the track within a 360 degree spatial, auditory environment.
Directed by The Mill’s Chief Creative Officer Angus Kneale and Executive Creative Director Ben Smith, the Hoova VR Experience is also unique in its advanced use of videogame engine-manipulated human characters. The Hoova VR Experience takes an eerie look into a virtual world, wherein each character is part of a frightening cycle. One by one, the characters become consumed and trapped by the VR experience they are witnessing.
The experience was developed in Unreal Engine 4 by The Mill’s VFX team, who were led by Realtime Supervisor Joji Tsuruga. The characters were created using motion capture of live action talent, carefully choreographed and animated to be accurate to the human form down to a single finger.
London-based The Mill has previously worked on numerous VR experiences for various clients, including Chevrolet, and was acquired by Technicolor in 2016. Other VR music works include a 360-degree video featuring beatboxing phenomenon Reeps One.
The Clark Hoova VR Experience is now available to download from Steam, compatible with HTC Vive, for free. The experience also supports, rather oddly, the second iteration of the Oculus Rift development kit, the Oculus Rift DK2. It’s not yet clear how the roomscale experience has been adapted to this older hardware.