New opportunities for designers in Stereoscopic 3D design

by Fred Showker

Interactive Games Ontario 3D (iGO3D) Graphic designers and others involved in the visual communications fields ; illustrators, photographers, painters, are finding fertile job-hunting opportunities in the digital gaming field. As with all the medias, gaming is now moving toward a 3D world and the qualities of visual talents will now be in huge demand. DTG Magazine friend Dr. Andrew Hogue, Assistant Professor, University of Ontario Institute of Technology tells you more . . .

The immersive game industry stands on the cusp of dramatic change following two years of specialized research conducted by Interactive Games Ontario 3D (iGO3D), an alliance of Ontario universities and leading game companies launched in early 2011. With total funding valued at $635,000, iGO3D’s findings include everything from developing a better understanding of stereoscopic 3D (S-3D) gaming to pioneering new techniques in S-3D visual game design.

Dr. Andrew Hogue, is also the Associate Project Director for iGO3D. He wrote :

Quoting  begins It was premature for industry leaders to encourage fixed design choices to determine good and bad 3D in games ... Our research shows we have a lot more to learn. There are still innovations to be made in areas like technology, game design and artistic choice. We found several challenges with what's available today, and iGO3D revealed new techniques and ideas that can positively shape future S-3D games. Quoting  ends

First spearheaded by UOIT and the S-3D Gaming Alliance (S3DGA), iGO3D's key partners also include York University, Western University, University of Waterloo and OCAD University. Industry members include Electronic Arts, Big Blue Bubble, Bitheads, JunctionVFX and Digital Extremes. Additional sponsors include AMD, Dynamic Digital Depth, and Audiofly. iGO3D is funded in part by the Ontario Media Development Corporation (OMDC) and the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE). Neil Schneider, Executive Director, S3GDA said

Quoting  begins Game developers are starting to get it and are already taking a closer look at immersive technologies like the Oculus Rift and other virtual reality (VR) devices ... iGO3D's findings will be a very helpful toolset for them to put out great memorable games Quoting  ends

iGO3D has showcased a real opportunity for 3D and VR to represent a brand new class rather than just an add-on for video games. One research project involved creating a 3D space shooter/maze game with its design focused around interactions in stereoscopic 3D, to determine whether the additional depth cues allow for new interactions not possible in traditional 2D games. The study found 70 per cent of players were able to complete the game on a 3D display in the first play-through, and all the first-time players gave up and failed when playing on a 2D display.

The iGO3D website is now accepting free registrations from Ontario game development professionals, applicable Ontario industry and S3DGA members. Only qualified registrations will be approved for access. Most of the research documents are supplemented with stereoscopic 3D videos that can also be viewed in traditional 2D if needed. The presentations will work with most available 2D and 3D options in the market.

Research findings include:

  • Relationships between stereoscopic 3D and audio
  • Perceptual issues and findings in S-3D gaming
  • New stereoscopic 3D rendering techniques
  • New and effective methods for drawing stereoscopic 3D crosshairs
  • Innovations in holographic gaming technology

Special industry presentations have also been made available by Big Blue Bubble and Digital Extremes: two companies with active S-3D game development experience. Researchers and industry representatives are also making themselves available to answer questions about the findings through an included discussion engine.

The iGO3D website will also be revealing its research results for the Fan Expo Battlefield 3 gaming competition. Featuring close to 250 participants, iGO3D has uncovered findings about what gamers think about being able to effectively compete in 3D, and some ideas on how to improve the experience further.

GO International Games Ontario 3D (iGO3D)

The University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) advances the discovery and application of knowledge through a technology-enriched learning environment and innovative programs responsive to the needs of students, and the evolving 21st-century workplace. With more than 9,200 undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in 70 programs delivered by exceptional faculty, UOIT promotes social engagement, fosters critical thinking and integrates outcomes-based learning experiences inside and outside the classroom. UOIT's commitment to accelerating economic growth and social innovation is realized through research collaborations with leading organizations such as Ontario Power Generation, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) and the Durham Regional Police Service. UOIT will mark its 10th anniversary on September 4, 2013. To find out more, visit uoit.ca.

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Oshawa, ON – March 4, 2013


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