Aurora-VR

This is the Minecraft MOD in development for rapid building and sharing virtual worlds. Build your virtual place with your friends or collaborators together. Share your virtual place and link it to other virtual places on the Internet (aka Virtual World Web). Connect external applications either at your local or some remote machine/cloud with your virtual places. Build your own beloved FPS game of dreams with Minecraft and export it into your favorite graphically-advanced game engine.

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This project is in the field of serious gaming/gamification area. The basic idea is to use existing FPS game engines for virtual/synthetic world simulation, rendering, user interaction, networking, etc. for the purposes others than gaming. These include scientific/commercial visualization, training, education, virtual places for social networks, etc. However, AURORA VR targets both serious gaming as well as FPS game developers.

Project AURORA VR has its major goal to make open source extendable virtual/synthetic world/place design available for everyone with any level of technical skills and background. The AURORA VR Project concerns building a Generic Virtual Reality World Framework that would support designing platform- and FPS game-engine-independent extendable multiscale virtual places. Being a user-friendly and intuitive to use CAD tool, it should allow you bringing up high-quality, advanced logic, mechanics  and content-rich virtual worlds that could be simulated at different FPS game engine-based platforms. Semiautomatic/automatic world generation will allow you to build large complex locations and structures. The only limitation here will be YOUR imagination.

This tool is meant for developers in the area of serious gaming/gamification as well as for indie FPS game developers

  • Main underlying platform:
  • Planned VR platform:
  • Primarily targeted computational platforms:
    • PC with Windows, Mac, Linux
  • Primarily targeted high-end graphics game engines:

 

Major Functions/Features:

  • WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) – in Minecraft-powered environment you will be able to see immediately the world you build
  • Client/Server multiuser – multiple developers can work in the same time on the same instance of the game world on a Minecraft-based server.
  • Developer/Player modes – the system will allow for game development and testing in parallel. I.e., a number of users in Dev mode will build the game world, while the others in Player mode could test the developers work in the same time. A user will be able to switch between Dev and Player modes at any time. This approach should reduce development-testing iterations in magnitude of orders.
  • Virtual world web (vWW) – pretty much like a WWW virtual worlds running physically at different servers will be interconnected. Elements from different virtual worlds will be able to “talk” to each other and act cross-world. In particular, it also means a user-transparent move/teleport between different servers. Different users will be able to create their own pieces of vWW (by analogy with a personal or commercial website) as their own custom worlds running on their own servers and connected to other servers (with means like HTML hyperlinks)
  • Cross-platform world descriptor language – pretty much in the same style as HTML defines web-pages in a browser-independent way, this language will define virtual worlds in game-engine-independent manner. Virtual worlds will be basically represented as human-readable/editable texts that could be generated and understood by AURORA VR system. The following implications of this feature as as follows:
    • Virtual world modularity – different fragments of game worlds could be combined with each other, replicated, integrated and reused in other game worlds, etc.
    • Dynamic virtual worlds and procedural world generation – AURORA VR will deal with streams of bytes that represent virtual world descriptors. Those streams could be human-edited text files, script/application generated byte streams, web-resources, in-game generated byte streams, etc.
    • Virtual worlds export/import – a virtual world could be developed in Minecraft environment, then exported in the virtual world descriptor format and saved as some text file, then it could be imported, for instance, as a Portal 2 map by an AURORA VR adapter for Valve Source engine, that would translate the virtual world from text format into VMF (Valve Map File) that could be edited with Valve’s Hammer tool.
    • Resurrect your virtual world or game in 10-20 years with a game engine of future days – like listening old immortal songs by Beatles with your advanced Hifi Dolby SR; in far future, when much more advanced game engines will appear, you could still run your virtual world or play your old favorite game, keep old essence of it, logic, mechanics, yet enjoying novel high-quality advanced graphics, physics, sound effects (even tactile feelings and smells if the future game systems would support this). All you will need will be an adapter that would translate AURORA VR virtual world descriptor format into the one understood by the future game engine.

 

Availability:

    • Open modular architecture
    • Open API
    • Open Source

 

Current progress and release dates:

The project is available as alpha-version for developers only at Google Code pages here. The source code is not yet documented, sorry. Working on that…

By the New Year planning releasing first beta for users.

Please contact me at vrogojin at vrogojin net for more details.

 

Other links

Principle, Concepts, How-It-Works:

TBD

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