Keeping it Real: Creating and Acquiring Assets for Serious Games

The Computer Games Journal (Springer). Vol 5, Issue 1-2, pp 7-22, September 2016.
DOI: 10.1007/s40869-016-0018-z
Paul Bourke1, Jeremy Green2

1 EPICentre, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
2 Western Australian Museum, Perth, WA, Australia


Abstract

This paper presents the data collection methodology for a project aimed at creating a virtual game like experience of a historically significant location in Western Australia. The goal is less about just conveying a sense of the place but more about creating an accurate representation. Where data such as imagery and 3D models are used to represent features at the location are unavailable or approximate, they remain missing rather than filling with interpretations or interpolations. The resulting virtual environment is closer to an archeological recording or database rather than simply a 3D environment one can navigate through and experience. It is proposed that the resulting virtual environment takes on an additional believability and appears more real than if it was enhanced by arbitrary modeling and generic texturing. Presented are the data capture methods employed, the limitations encountered in conducting data capture in the field, constraints imposed by current technology and finally the remaining challenges in the various technologies employed.

Keywords

Virtual environments, serious games, virtual reality, digital assets, heritage data, Unity3D, 3D reconstruction, photographic textures.

Pre-press version of paper