Most of us have had dreams about going to space and visiting other planets. Seeing the stars and looking out towards other systems. Though it might still be some time off, virtual reality (VR) is allowing people to experience those moments today. With the upcoming release of Red Rover: Planetary Driving Simulator, users will be able to explore the surface of Mars within VR.
Developed by Alan Chan, who has 20 plus years of experience working in the visual effects industry, Red Rover creates a digital version of the red planet and allows users to explore it at their own pace. Built using satellite and terrain data from NASA’s HiRISE Mars orbiter, the result is a highly details and actuate digital re-creation of Mars.
To explore the planet users will strap themselves into a virtual buggy and drive along the surface of the red planet on an near-limitless adventure. There are no missions to complete, no highscores to beat, no dangers, just pure simulated Mars goodness to be explored. Red Rover features nine curated Mars datasets which are roughly around 5km by 5km in size each.
Red Rover started as a personal research project a few years ago driven by Chan’s wish of wanting to explore the surface of Mars. After a long time in development the project is being released on Steam so others can explore the red planet and enjoy the zen-like experience as well.
Thanks to the power of VR and current technology, experiences like Red Rover are able to immerse user into breathtaking motions such as this. Being able to enter the virtual recreation of Mars and explore it, driving along the surface at your own speed, will be sure to offer a relaxing journey for all no matter who long you spend on the planet.
Red Rover is planned to release onto Steam on 19th June, 2018 and will support the Oculus Rift at launch. The title can also be enjoyed without a VR headset as well, making it available to more users. For more on Red Rover in the future and other Mars related VR experiences, keep reading VRFocus.