Greed: A VR Horror gift and the benefits of giving

As VR (Virtual Reality) is on the fast approach for 2016, I thought it the best time to share a completely new chapter of A Chair in a Room for Android.

In the spirit of dark adventure, the xmas gift is called “Greed” and is loosely based around Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, but, unlike the Muppets version (as far as I can remember), A Chair in a Room takes you through a sinister story laden with profit, denial and corruption, which could ultimately prove to be your sharp demise.

The benefits of giving?

The project took approximately 4/6 weeks earlier in the year and was carried out as a UX/UI test as much as an experiment in horror. The goal was to push what could be achieved with just one button and no menu screens. The idea was to use a short introduction and then contextual interface highlights throughout for a more complex VR experience.

A highlight is the inventory system, although this is pretty rudimentary and not dynamically coded (to test quickly), the idea has worked well in testing and was found to be intuitive on a sample of people ranging from 19 to 68 years old. The addition of a shadow is a simple design idea that gives a sense of ownership to the objects the player collects and, with a few adjustments, this idea is simple enough to be a standard in VR design.

Finally, for the first time I’ve implemented realtime analytics, this is an incredibly easy process to get off the ground but can quickly become much more involved as you design tracking to find patterns in app usage. Initially this will be used to measure sessions per player, follow basic user journeys and log any drop in frame rate (vital for VR comfort).

VR is a shrouded path with a goal somewhere in the near distance, and, as I build up to the full launch, the more that can learnt from this small app with large user base the better.

Download for free on the Android Play Store