Best Unreal VR Experience

Fontys School of ICT

Students win the prize for “Best Unreal VR Experience” at the Virtual Reality Hackathon

In the weekend of 27 till 29 May 2016 students Indy Dennie, Wouter Houwen, Popa Mihai Vlad, Sindre Yndestad, Bas van Loon, Yvo von Berg, Joni Kämppä, Andoni Serrano Lomas, Toma Julian, Hristo Tarnev, Dennis Kok and Vlad Popa participated in the Virtual Reality Hackathon (VR Hackathon) in Brussels. And... it has paid off! They won the prize for "Best Unreal VR Experience".

In total, 12 teams participated and 7 prizes were awarded for 7 different categories. "We went to Brussels with 11 students, of which 10 are programmers and 1 is a designer," says Indy Dennie. "We have started a project in a relatively new game engine, the Unreal Engine. Only one person in the team had a year of experience with this software for making games, but all the others had never used it before.

Saturday morning at 07:00 we started and on Sunday afternoon at 13:00 we handed in a working VR experience within which one navigates a lion over Savannah-like terrain. The goal of the game / VR experience is finding a prey. The controls in the game are not like in traditional games, with a keyboard and a mouse, but with a Razer Hydra, a device that translates hand movements of the player into movements within the game."

The jury members were very impressed with the end product, a well-working game with an off-beat concept, well executed and with alternative controls. "Another thing they were impressed by was our dedication, we are the only team that has worked all through the night, which means we have worked for 30 hours straight!"

At the award ceremony, the students were rewarded for their dedication and learning abilities (after all, they hadn't worked with the Unreal Engine before) and they were awarded the prize for 'Best Unreal VR Experience.' "In total we have been at this Hackathon from Friday evening 18:00 until Sunday afternoon 19:00, so at the end of this weekend we were all mighty tired and some even had to still go home by public transportation. With this prize in the pocket, we proudly demonstrated this game to our VR teachers and we're looking back on the past weekend with a lot of satisfaction."

Teacher Sjaak Verwaaijen is very proud. "It was fantastic, this weekend in Brussels. The students worked very hard, (little sleep), but that has been rewarded with "Best Unreal VR experience". And to think that they had never worked with Unreal before."

Watch the award ceremony here: