Oculus Rift allows users to experience game worlds in new and simple ways, with every new generate and leap in graphics gamers tend to look around the world and see what kinds of new surprises and looks they will be given. Oculus Rift allows users to experience this sensation of a new world in a whole different way and from that many “walking sims” have been created where there isn’t essentially a purpose to the game or tech demo more that you can just explore and see what’s going on. For this weeks Ocular Reality we’re going to be looking at some Studio Ghibli walking sims.
Two of the more impressive walking sims for the Oculus Rift are lovingly recreated scenes from different Miyazaki movies, Spirited Away and My Neighbour Totoro. These two movies are arguably the most well known of the Studio Ghibli name and have had critical acclaim all over the world. In the Spirited Away walking sim you take over the body of Chihiro after she has descended the steps to the boiler room. You get to take the first step along the hallway towards the boiler man. The attention to detail in the walking sim shows how much effort creator Pittom put into recreating the scene perfectly. As you look around you can see all of the draws of herbs that the boiler man is to send up to the baths and even look down as the soot creatures complete their jobs of keeping the fires stoked.
In the second of the walking simulations you get to reenact the well known Catbus scene from My Neighbor Totoro. Approaching the bus stop you get to see the forest all around you, you can hear and see rain all around and there’s even a friendly frog that you can interact with. The real events of this tech demo occur once you walk up to the bus stop and pick up the umbrella. From there events are carried out just as they do in the movie with Totoro stepping out from the forest where you hand him an umbrella which he enjoys. Then the Catbus arrives and picks up Totoro and he heads away. Again the level of detail on Totoro with each facial reaction and expressive movement is a perfect mimic of the original and this level of detail makes the experience an incredible one.
If you want to try out these demos then you can head over to the creators VR Projects page. All of these demos are free to play and can be played using your keyboard or an Xbox 360 controller. RedOfPaw is also currently one of the people working on Crystal Rift a VR dungeon crawler, you can find out more information about that project at their kickstarter.