Virtual Reality That You See, Hear, Touch, Smell . . . and Think

Virtual Reality That You See, Hear, Touch, Smell . . . and Think

vr-see-hear-tough-smell-think

Digital Realities experts, Harmony Studios, have taken immersive reality to a new level and created two environments which build on the basic visual and audio blocks of Virtual Reality (VR).

“We wanted to see how far we could take the immersive experience and understand the emotional responses visitors have with VR environments” says Jason Higgins, Managing Director “The results were really interesting and, after doing a showcase at a convention recently, we saw how immersion can affect people”

Whilst the visual 3D representation allow users to journey inside different Worlds, it was the subtle addition of movement, interaction, spatial sound, thought and, most interestingly, scent that created true multi-sensory feedback to the user.

“Early on we found that motion sickness, lack of a ‘real’ experience feeling and a general cloud of digital detachment all related to the fact that VR of the eyes and ears is not immersive, just suggestive.” Higgins explains. “By layering sensations with visual touch, motion seating and our software controlled multi-scent delivery we not only resolved these negatives but greatly enhanced their digital reality and interpretation.”

The final twist was combining brain activity into the software so that the user can influence the environment and outcomes with the power of thought.
The two sample environments created by Harmony represent the different ends of the immersion spectrum. Both are visually impressive but THE LIMIT is a space themed VR ride which designed to be enclosed, almost claustrophobic, exciting, terrifying and provide the user with two choices – stay focussed during the panic and think your way to safety or feel your final moments slip away. ZEN, on the other hand is open, beautiful, peaceful, environmentally interactive and scent rich as you pass through areas or touch objects.

“Using the same custom designed kits, we created opposite experiences which were enjoyable in their own way and but triggered very different reactions. By challenging traditional ‘game’ scenarios we widened the audiences who were interested in using VR and the feelings achieved within them”

Harmony are planning a series of events for journalists and partner agencies this year and refining the hardware offering for 2016.

The quest for digital “real” continues but this form of digital immersion is the closest anyone has come to achieving it so far.

Reviews from showcase sessions:

ZEN THE LIMIT
“Like I’d been flying with fairies in a game”“Really exciting immersive virtual reality”“Gorgeous escapism”

“you can watch all the let’s play videos you want but nothing can actually prepare you for the first time you put the helmet on”

“Amazing; feels so weird in the process and gets you believing you are actually there and witnessing those things.”

“Amazing. Cool interaction with hands.”

“very good like being in Universal, Florida!”

“Amazing. I can’t wait for games to be like this! I almost fell asleep it was so nice!”

“Like being in a real fantasy universe. Just lovely.”

“Amazing!”

“Great, amazing, really good combination of sensory experiences”

“wonderful experience”

“Calm, relaxing and most of all fun.”

“Peaceful and beautiful.”

 

“Unique and the future.”“Mental”“Fantastic experience with what feels like incredibly advanced computing”

“Awesome”

“Exciting”

“Must experience it”

“Amazing; feels so weird in the process and gets you believing you are actually there and witnessing those things.”

“Definitely worth a try, the future!”

“An amazing experience that has to be seen”

“Awesome, and surprisingly realistic, we spent ages working out how many years until that technology is in use at home!”

“Unforgettable experience. Amazing piece of technology.” “Feels so real.”

“Immersive and something everyone should try”

“Amazing. Can’t wait for games to actually be like this!”

“Amazing, VR can become a great technology to supplement our current tech.”

“Terrifyingly brilliant”

“Cool experience, movements felt very realistic”

“Indescribable”

Harmony (harmony.co.uk) was established in 1996 and is an independent digital realities studio working with partner agencies to deliver augmented and virtual apps and installations for global brands.

Further information:

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/what-makes-digital-reality-jason-higgins

info@harmony.co.uk