VR CAR EXPERIENCE
Established in Riyadh in 2010, the Saudi Energy Efficiency Center aims at rationalizing the production and consumption of energy in order to increase efficiency in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It also unifies both governmental and non-governmental efforts in this field. The organization wants to ensure continued growth and survival, without adversely affecting the welfare of citizens.
Saudi Energy Efficiency Center
HTC Vive + steering wheel
Visual results video
Seeing your way clear to be economical
There is no better way to learn something than through an actual experience. And, since VR is capable of delivering lifelike experiences, a combination of educational value and VR technology brings the best possible results. The application we created helped the client achieve their goal of promoting social awareness in the field of rationalization and efficiency of energy consumption.
This is a very important topic as the land transportation sector in Saudi Arabia suffers from excessive fuel consumption. Our VR driving simulator is in line with the client’s objective of spreading a culture of energy consumption rationalization in general and fuel consumption rationalization in particular.
The real-life challenges in Saudi Arabia that the VR driving simulator addresses are:
Low fuel prices minimize consumers’ interest in fuel consumption rationalization.
Low efficiency of currently used vehicles – consumers in Saudi Arabia prefer big engine vehicles, regardless of actual needs, and regardless of fuel consumption standards and efficiency.
Unavailability of comfortable, high-quality public transportation alternatives and means, as well as the lack of fast and convenient railway connections between cities.
Showing people how to enjoy their cars responsibly
The client needed a VR driving simulator that would, through entertainment, draw attention to the issue of using cars responsibly and economically. The idea was for users to try their hands as supercar drivers and verify their driving skills avoiding obstacles.
The client’s mission is as follows: Preserving the national wealth of energy sources in a way that supports the national economy and forces. The organization focuses on building awareness of the conscious and rational use of energy resources, on both micro and macro scale. The educational aspect is very important here. So is presenting actual effects of negligence.
For this reason, the client wanted to use VR technology, where users acquire practical knowledge through a gameplay experience.
Process and project scope
The user’s route runs across the city and its suburbs. In the urban area, there are tunnels, traffic lights and billboards, while outside the city the landscape is a desert with clouds of dust and sand scudding over the road.
The obstacles appear at randomly chosen points, in the form of household appliances. The user has to cover the distance of three laps; each time, the level of difficulty increases. Having completed a lap, users receive both visual and sonic information in Arabic, which draws their attention to particular modules of the car.
The VR driving simulator was to be presented to customers living in Arab countries. Therefore, we were supposed to design an environment that would reflect the specific road conditions there. This is why we created a city in the desert.
The most important element in this project was to convey the message: ways to save energy and aspects of our behavior that have a negative impact in this regard.
The biggest challenge was to find the most effective way to steer a car in the VR environment. We eventually chose a steering wheel, which made the entire VR driving simulator more realistic and quite intuitive at the same time.
There are no circumstances beyond your control
The app was designed for HTC Vive combined with a steering wheel controller. All features of the application were developed using Unity 3D on the basis of materials selected and provided by the client. Some minute modifications of the models were done in 3ds Max.