After playing hours and hours of virtual reality (VR) content have you ever wanted to make your own immersive videogame? While it might seem daunting, Oculus and Unity want to make that process a little easier. So they’ve teamed up to create a course to help anyone out there who’s interested in learning about all aspects of VR creation.
Now you can’t just go in cold having never even looked at Unity (a game engine by the way). Called “Design, Develop, and Deploy for VR“, the course is free but it’s designed to an intermediary level so you’ll need some basic knowledge first. If you don’t then Unity suggests some introductory courses first, such as an intro to Unity course and an intro to VR tutorial.
For those ready to dive right in the course is available today, all you need is Unity, the Oculus SDK and VRTK, and ideally an Oculus Rift S, although the principles covered also apply to Oculus Quest.
“In more than 20 hours of hands-on course content, you’ll learn about programming, user experience (UX) considerations for VR, optimization, launching your game and more,” notes the Unity blog. “Twelve experts from Oculus and Unity give you in-depth lessons to help you build your own vertical slice (think, level of a game) of an escape room game. Plus, after you complete the course, you can submit your vertical slice for feedback from Oculus.”
The course is split across the following 11 units:
- Unit 1: Introduction – Chris Pruett from Oculus
- Chris gives you an overview of the VR industry, best practices for a successful VR game and an overview of what you’ll be learning.
- Unit 2: VR game development and prototyping – Ruth Bram and Mari Kyle from Oculus
- Planning sets you up for success, and in this unit, you’ll learn to create a game design document, a player profile report and a press kit.
- Unit 3: Using Unity to develop VR experiences – Joy Horvath from Unity
- You’ll learn how to set up the Oculus and Virtual Reality Toolkit (VRTK integrations) in Unity as well as how to set up a basic VR scene.
- Unit 4: Locomotion and ergonomics – Eric Cosky from Oculus
- Get best practices for making your VR experience comfortable and learn how to implement a teleportation system.
- Unit 5: Hand presence and interaction – Matt Franklin from Oculus
- Learn how hand interactions work in VR, how to design interactions to manipulate objects and how to overcome challenges with item placement.
- Unit 6: Best UI practices for VR – Gabor Szauer from Oculus
- Transition from 2D to VR, review well-established VR interaction paradigms (think laser pointers) and find out how to design a user friendly interface for VR.
- Unit 7: Sound in VR – Robert Heitkamp of Oculus
- Implement spatial audio for VR with the Oculus Spatializer Plugin. Plus, dive into reverb and mixer settings and learn how to test your audio.
- Unit 8: Performance requirements – Matt Conte from Oculus
- Be efficient with assets, implement lighting and configure your settings to get better performance from your VR game.
- Unit 9: Optimization – Cristiano Ferreira from Oculus
- Get to the bottom of bottlenecks with Unity Profiler, Frame Debugger and Unity Profile Analyzer. You’ll also learn about the technical requirements to pass Oculus Virtual Reality Checks (VRCs).
- Unit 10: Testing – Lisa Brewster and Bruce Wooden from Oculus
- Successfully run tests on your VR application. By the end of this unit, you’ll be ready to implement quality VR playtests to your development cycles.
- Unit 11: Submission and go-to-market strategy – Mari Kyle from Oculus
- In this final unit, you’ll get a crash course on marketing to drive awareness of your VR experience and pricing strategy. We’ll also talk about best practices for submitting to the Oculus Store.
So if you’re a developer keen on delving into VR or simply an enthusiast, here’s a good stepping stone to learning more. For further updates, keep reading VRFocus.