The painting application Skybox Painter is basically made to place 2D shapes in a 3D environment, in order to create skies for video games in an artistic way. There is a mixed toolset, that uses some optimized effects that are needed for skies, while the menus offer an intuitive painting environment to the user. The main theme of the thesis is the implementation of the described application in VR and the question, if digital design tools are productive and useful in VR or if a desktop version is better for industrial usage.
Interface of the Desktop Version
Panoramic Export of a stylized night sky
Light calculation algorithm (white side of clouds facing towards the sun) on top of the Unity default sky
Randomly generated cloud layers (using opaque and blurry structures)
Due to many reasons it seems like VR is just not ready for serious and professional usage. The most important thing for digital design applications is to have as many options as possible, that can be chosen from in really complex menus, to allow the user the dynamic interactions between the tools. But this is crucial for VR, because menus as well as complexity are both weaknesses of VR. Skybox Painter simply doesn’t feel like a digital design application in VR, but more like an interactive game, where you are encouraged to let your imagination flow and you are not bound to anything from the real world. And this is indeed good for the creativity of the user, giving him a playful approach on working on the desired outcome.
As a result you could say that the VR version of a program will always get more attention and be funnier to use, but the desktop version is the one, that gets things done and does fit into the production pipeline of a video game project much better, unless it is a VR game, that might benefit from the usage of VR tools for the production a lot, as they give a better feeling of what the game will feel like in the end.