December 11, 2017

Game Studies Team Provides VR Support for USA TODAY’s Project “The Wall”

The Wall Border VR Project with USA TODAY

Five UAT Game Studios students worked on a project called, “The Wall: Unknown Stories, Unintended Consequences,” under the leadership of USA TODAY NETWORK and The Arizona Republic. After 15 weeks of research and development, “The Wall,” launched on Sept. 20. “The Wall” is a in-depth project that provides a visual representation of President Donald Trump’s mission to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border. UAT Game Studios Program Champion Derric Clark selected students for the development team and created a special topics class called SPT 323: The Wall. Acting as a supportive team, students created virtual reality (VR) worlds modeling…

Virtual Reality for Business E-commerce

Virtual Reality for business ecommerce- Game Studies Professor Derric Clark

When you think of VR what comes to mind? Video games, most likely. Did you know that Virtual Reality studies can open up new careers that students may have never known existed? Businesses can use virtual reality technology to engage customers in areas like shopping for a dream home, deciding on a vacation experience or a tour of a new restaurant pre-construction. UAT Game Studios Program Champion Derric Clark has seen the development of VR unfold since the early 90s in his time at UAT. Below Professor Clark shares his thoughts on VR’s place in business e-commerce. The core to…

Bust’a Worm: From Game Jam to Steam Greenlight

Bust'a Worm created in UAT Game Studios

With the popularity of virtual reality devices, such as Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, it’s no surprise that UAT Game Studios students are developing games for both platforms in the UAT Game Studio. Development team Tiny Vision Entertainment created their newest VR game called Bust’a Worm for the HTC Vive in a 48-hour Game Jam held at UAT last year. Bust’a Worm is a Virtual Reality game played on the HTC Vive where the player can use voice commands to change up their weapon involving spikes, fire, or ice at intimidating alien worms on the attack. Because this game was…

UPDATE: UAT Student Competed in Unspoken VR Game Tournament

Oculus The Unspoken VR Tournament

Alumni Jesse Rogers, who studied Game Design at UAT, had the chance to compete in the final stage of Oculus’s The Unspoken VR Tournament for Oculus Rift Touch last month in New York City. Because Jesse made it to the Top 8, he won airfare and a hotel stay in New York City so he could participate in the finals. See our previous blog on how Jesse earned a spot in the Top 8! So how did the tournament go? Jesse checked into the hotel and took a ride to the Microsoft Store on Fifth Avenue. At the studio, he met…

Game Professors Present VR at Science With A Twist at Arizona Science Center

Science with a Twist featuring UAT Virtual Reality and Animation at IMAX

The Arizona Science Center is blowing up the night for a special adult-only event featuring a twist on science demos and experiments, a high energy DJ, specialty drinks and a presentation on “Animation and Virtual Reality” by UAT Game Studios Professors Jorge Portillo and Ben Reichert, who just returned from a week at E3, the Electronics Entertainment Expo in California. UAT’s VR slide show presentation, which will be held in the IMAX Theater, will include information about UAT degrees in Game Design, Game Programming, Art and Animation and Virtual Reality. Professor Portillo, who specializes in game art, will touch on…

Game Design Student Ranked Top 8 in VR Tournament – Finals This Weekend!

The Unspoken VR

Game Programming student and avid gamer Jesse Rogers put his skills to the test in The Unspoken VR game tournament against other local gamers taking first in the local and regional competitions. These consecutive wins secured Jesse a spot in the Top 8 to complete in the Finals this weekend in New York City. The Unspoken VR, played on Oculus Rift, is holding a nationwide tournament hosted by Insomniac games, Microsoft and Oculus. The game is a 1v1 magic throwing player vs player game and the winner takes the best of three rounds. Jesse had never played this game before, but…

Southwest Video Game Showcase Winners

Southwest Video Game Showcase at Phoenix Comicon

UAT Game studios students and alumni featured indie games for four days at Phoenix Comicon at the 4th annual Southwest Video Games Showcase (SWVGS), presented by Game CoLab. “Game CoLab proudly presented its 4th annual video games showcase, highlighting awesome games from Arizona and beyond.” -UAT Professor Ben Reichert The Southwest Video Games Showcase was an opportunity for the public to meet the game developers, play their games, and sit in on industry panels, vote on awards and more. SWVGS was held May 25-28, 2017 at the Phoenix Convention Center during Phoenix Comicon in the Hall of Heroes, among celebrities and other…

Can VR Help Reduce Stress Levels in College Students?

Virtual Reality Degree at University of Advancing Technology

Can Virtual Reality (VR) help to reduce stress levels in college students? Let’s find out. High school student Kristy Taing, who attends BASIS Chandler, is conducting her senior research project at UAT to study anxiety levels in college students. In working with UAT Game Studios Program Champion Derric Clark and game design students, Kristy has created a study that measures a students stress level before and after playing a short, relaxing VR game on the HTC Vive for a period of five minutes. In order to measure the stress levels of students, Kristy used a Likert scale and blood pressure…

Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell Highlights UAT at State of City Address

Busta Worm demo with Jesse Rogers and Mayor Mark Mitchell

In preparation for the 2016 State of the City Address on Dec. 2, Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell spent a few hours at UAT familiarizing himself with UAT’s new Virtual Reality degree by testing out “Bust’a Worm”, a new virtual reality game students created for the HTC Vive, originally developed for a 48-hour game jam. Mayor Mitchell also met with students Kenneth Vorseth and Ryan McDonald as they demonstrated their cost effective version of a VR head mounted display (HMD) unit, a product they have been innovating all semester and have hopes of bringing the finished version to the consumer market. Mayor…

Virtual Reality Gains Traction in Mainstream Industries

Virtual Reality Degree at UAT

Virtual Reality (VR) has been around for decades, but in the last year VR has been making a name for itself as a rising career in today’s world. What is VR? Virtual Reality is a computer-generated simulation of a three-dimensional image or environment that can be interacted with in a seemingly real or physical way by a person using special electronic equipment, such as a helmet with a screen inside or gloves fitted with sensors. Some examples of Virtual Reality devices include Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, both of which can be demonstrated in the New Technologies Lab on UAT’s…