Beyond Inventory Systems

Going on an adventure means, at some point, having to look through your pockets for those all important bits of kit. Whether it’s a map, compass or gauntlet of power, you need to make sure your preparations weren’t in vain and that you’ll last long enough to reach the next safe spot. Inventory systems are a core component of many genres and aren’t exclusive to roleplaying games. Choosing your loadout in a first person shooter, making sure you have your long and short range options carefully considered also qualifies. Rather than focusing on the different ways of handling a grid of images (as most discussion on this topic seems to get stuck), I wanted to […]

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Cartography in Gaming

To this day, I continue to get excited whenever I see a game map. I feel the urge to explore and my imagination goes into overdrive, creating stories for the areas depicted and quickly convincing myself that the world is more expansive and fantastic than it usually ends up being. This ‘runaway imagination train’ effect is something I always look to experience when I pickup a new game and hope to be able to replicate in future projects. In games, maps tend to provide context. They show us where we sit in the scheme of things and sometimes allow us to gauge our progress en route to a terminal destination, be it a snowy mountain […]

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Demonstrating Virtual Reality at the University of Hertfordshire

It’s not often that we get the chance to demonstrate what we’re working on as, in education, it’s more about the finished product and conclusions. Nevertheless, during the HEaTED East of England network event , we were given the opportunity to allow people to wonder around a bespoke 3D environment while using our HTC Vive headset and touch controllers. We used the controllers themselves to emulate the functional behaviours of a smartphone. The reactions were all positive and I managed to have chats with some senior managers about where it is we’re hoping to take our vision for VR at the University. You can find a brief video depicting the space below: The idea was […]

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The HTC Vive in a smaller space

Granted, there are plenty of videos showing how the Vive works in large, open environments but few of them deal with the real-world scenarios faced by many when it comes to introducing virtual reality to their living rooms. Much like how the Nintendo Wii needed a similar amount of space in order to allow the user to swing their arms around as they participated in sword fights, golf and bowling, the Vive needs even more to do it justice. Having said that, it seems to work incredibly well, even in something of a cramped space. I don’t doubt that, as the prevalence of VR continues to grow, we may undergo a radical culture shift involving […]

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