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Über dieses Buch

Apply the techniques needed to build VR applications for mobile and standalone head-mounted displays (HMDs) using the Unreal Engine. This book covers the entire VR ecosystem including production tools, Unreal engine, workflows, performance and optimization, and presents two fully-developed projects to reinforce what you've learned. Media designers, CG artists and other creatives will be able to take advantage of real-time engine techniques and easy-to-learn visual scripting logic to turn their creations into immersive and interactive VR worlds.
Gear VR, the Oculus Go and other Android based VR HMDs are becoming exciting new platforms for immersive business presentations, entertainment and educational solutions. The Unreal engine, one of the world’s most powerful and popular game engines, is now free to use and has become increasingly popular for real-time visualizations and enterprise solutions in recent years.
With Unreal's powerful blueprint visual scripting system, non-coders can now design blueprints in Unreal, unlock the power of rapid prototyping, and create complex interactions without a line of code. Get your copy of Unreal for Mobile and Standalone VR today and begin using this powerful tool-set to create high-end VR apps for a wide range of applications from games, B2B, to education.
What You'll LearnExplore the VR ecosystem, including history, recent trends and future outlook
Review tool set, graphics and animation pipeline (Blender, Zbrush, Substance Painter and others)
Examine graphics optimization techniques
Set up a project and the target platform
Design interaction with Unreal blueprints
Deployments, testing, further optimization
Who This Book Is For

Multimedia designers, CG artists, producers, app developers. No coding experience is required.

Inhaltsverzeichnis

Frontmatter

Chapter 1. The VR Ecosystem and What to Expect in the Years to Come

Abstract
This chapter is a snapshot of the wider virtual reality (VR) industry at the time of the writing of this book. VR innovation is constantly evolving, partly due to the fact that the latest wave of the consumer VR market is still in its early stages; in many aspects, not unlike the early smartphone market, when a large variety of technologies, formats, form factors, and user experience (UX) concepts were competing for consumer attention. Besides the almost daily news on breakthrough research in areas like resolution, eye tracking, and usability, there are stable long-term trends that have proven to be reliable pointers for the roadmap ahead of us. We will look at these established long-term VR trends and evaluate what is relevant in the mobile and standalone VR space.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 2. VR Production Tools, Workflow, and Pipeline

Abstract
In this chapter, we go over the basic concepts of creating content for VR, such as generating prerendered stereoscopic 360 VR images, workflows for VR real-time 3D assets and the typical production steps using popular 3D programs. We will also go through the steps to create a real-time 3D asset using the photogrammetry technique. We will look at the key advantages that the Unreal Engine has to offer for VR production and go over common VR production principles to ensure a smooth user experience.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 3. Before You Start

Abstract
In this chapter, we look at all aspects of VR production from a conceptual side. This includes fundamental question on VR as a medium, ways to understand the role of VR opposed to other media types, and the process of bringing ideas into a VR format, including approaches on how to align one’s mindset with the technical side, as being productive with visual scripting based on an object-oriented paradigm.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 4. Unreal for VR: Basic Ingredients for an Oculus Go Project Setup

Abstract
In this chapter, we look at the core concepts of creating a VR experience using the Unreal Engine. We’ll take a quick look at how VR components are used across platforms, and then go straight into setting up an Oculus Go project right from the beginning. We will start with the prerequisites and initial setup followed by creating a project for testing different locomotion, teleportation, and object interaction concepts. After that we are going to build our scene using a pawn Blueprint with its components and event graphs, a level Blueprint for object interaction, and various material Blueprints to complete the scene. The basic concepts in this chapter are valid across all VR platforms and focus on the most common use cases for VR experiences.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 5. Comparing the Gear VR, Oculus Go, and Oculus Quest

Abstract
In this chapter, we look at the key differences between the Gear VR, the Oculus Go, and the Oculus Quest (based on prerelease information and subject to change when it ships). Even though each one of these headsets runs on an Android operating system, hardware differences play an important role when targeting the individual headset and its use. We will compare hardware specifications and different input events, and learn how to assign them in Unreal.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 6. Creating an Interactive VR Presentation

Abstract
In this chapter, we build the basic components needed for a VR presentation and go through all production steps from start to finish. These steps include blocking out the scene idea, building geometry and UVs, creating tiling materials, sculpting the main model and retopologizing it, creating tileable materials, lighting the scene in Unreal, and building an interactive menu to activate a scene animation and property changes on the presentation model. The goal is to give a quick overview of the most important steps when building a VR presentation that is typical for a B2B project.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 7. An Introduction to Creating VR Game Mechanics

Abstract
In this chapter, we will focus on creating VR puzzle mechanics and Blueprint communication methods. While in Chapter 4 we used the level Blueprint to create interactions between different scene objects, we will in this chapter do all interaction between Blueprint actors without ever opening the Level editor. The advantage is a flexible system of scene components that can easily be reused in another level if required. By creating a small, fixed slot inventory menu, we can explore how we communicate with variables across various Blueprint actors to get or set values. Exploring the tools for character interaction gives us an introduction to customizing our own imported character meshes and setting them up to be controlled by Unreal’s sophisticated animation and artificial intelligence (AI) system.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 8. Performance, Profiling, and Optimizations

Abstract
In this chapter, we look at the various profiling and optimization tools that are available in the Unreal editor and when testing on the Android target platform. It is usually a good idea to start profiling early and have an eye on the frames per second (fps) at any stage of development to eliminate roadblocks when they occur.
Cornel Hillmann

Chapter 9. Conclusion and Resources

Abstract
This last chapter of the book summarizes where we stand in the evolution of mobile and standalone VR and assesses what may be next. At this point, we can safely state that what we are witnessing is only the beginning of a new era of immersive media and that the rate of innovation will most likely accelerate rapidly once consumer adoption picks up.
Cornel Hillmann

Backmatter

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