February 2017 | By Hook Studios
Pilot a futuristic drone on an alien planet in immersive Daydream VR.
Exo is an immersive VR game where players pilot a futuristic drone around an unknown planet, working to discover and activate an ancient alien technology. Players will need to discover how to interact with the world through their drone with help from a mothership, hovering above. The drone’s scanner gives some clues about the connection between objects in the world and hints at where to go next, but the rest is left to the player to discover through 360 degree exploration. Exo was born out of a series of prototypes that we did on a makeshift Daydream dev kit, exploring possible uses of the controller’s unique rotational tracking and touchpad interface. One of our early test flight mechanics directly translated the controller’s orientation to the drone’s orientation with a simple uni-directional thrusting mechanism. This turned out to be both engaging and challenging for the player. The rest of experience was built around that basic control concept which is not possible on other mobile VR platforms. The app was created in the ever evolving Daydream technical preview version of Unity. It utilizes the Google VR SDK and some of the latest features in Unity 5 like physically based rendering, real-time global illumination, and more. Daydream’s async reprojection was key to keeping the frame rate up while pushing the visual fidelity.