Close

Blog

MJV Volunteer

NatureSims Partners With Monarch Joint Venture On MonarchVR Game

Did you know that no single monarch completes the species’ entire Great Migration in a lifespan?  Monarchs born in the summer live two to six weeks while those born in August can live up to nine months by entering reproductive diapause, which prolongs life by delaying reproductive functions.  This and countless other fascinating facts are […]

Read More...

Monarch butterflies emerging from chrysalis.

Beta Testers, Ready to Be the Monarch Butterfly?

Be The Butterfly…Beta Tester! Connect with wildlife like never before by transforming into a monarch butterfly in this gamified nature simulation.   Is MonarchVR a game? An app? A nature simulation? Really, all the above. We like to think about it as an experience first and foremost—a chance to gain more understanding of nature and the monarch. To keep moving […]

Read More...

Project Update - grants, simulated butterfly vision, and more…

It’s been a busy few months at NatureSims. Since our last post, we have updated our flight mechanics, improved our avatar calibration for different player body sizes, redesigned our demo environment, and migrated our project to a new rendering pipeline in Unity to give us a performance boost. We were also recently awarded a grant […]

Read More...

Simulator Sickness & User Comfort

Simulator Sickness & User Comfort User comfort is an important topic in VR, particularly as VR experiences have a greater tendency to cause simulator sickness in users. It is especially important here, as even with the basic flight mechanics described above, this simulation is already in the “intense” category. While not all researchers agree on […]

Read More...

Becoming a Butterfly - Part 2: Butterfly Flight Mechanics

In the last post, we covered the creation of the monarch butterfly avatar that players will embody in this VR game/simulation. In this post, we’ll be discussing the development of our avatar’s flight capabilities, using the Nvidia PhysX engine in Unity. As a starting point, it’s important to first understand the basics of how real […]

Read More...

Becoming a Butterfly

Part I: The Body This NatureSims post is focused on the creation of the monarch butterfly player avatar, or the butterfly body players will occupy when they enter the simulation. This will be a fairly high-level overview of this process, so don’t expect lots of code snippets or details about various Unity settings. (That said, […]

Read More...

Enter The World of the Monarch Butterfly

With our first public VR prototype, Frogworld, now available on Oculus and Steam, we are excited to announce the next area of focus for NatureSims™. Our primary goal is to reimagine the nature documentary for the new mediums of virtual and augmented reality through gamified, first-person simulations and companion educational applications. All in the hope […]

Read More...

Frogworld - Early Release

At long last Frogworld is available for early release on Steam. As the first NatureSims™ volume, Frogworld represents the beginning of what I hope will be a long series dedicated to bringing users closer to nature by experiencing the lives of some of our most intriguing animal cousins in an immersive, first-person format that is […]

Read More...