Learning Virtual Reality

Group of people attending a virtual reality workshop in VR Lab in Waldo Library.Western Michigan University offers workshops and online tutorials to help you to discover the power of virtual reality and even start making your own VR content. There are no prerequisites for any workshop, although it is suggested that you start with the Unity tutorials available below. All workshops are held in the Virtual Reality Lab located on the lower level of Waldo Library.

No registration required for most workshops. Dates and times of workshops are subject to change. Check back to this page frequently for up-to-date workshop information. 

Current Workshops

Intro to VR

Get your first look at Virtual Reality and learn about the different types of VR content that are available. We will explore panoramic photographs, VR Video, non-interactive VR content, and fully interactive VR titles.

  • Friday, September 21, 10:30 a.m. to noon
  • Friday, October 26, 2 to 3:30 p.m.
  • Friday, November 9, 10:30 a.m. to noon

Creating VR in Unity

Learn how to start making your own virtual reality content using the Unity Game Engine. Attendees will learn how to navigate Unity's interface, create basic objects, enable Unity's VR capabilities, and add VR interactions with the Oculus Touch controllers. See the Unity links below for downloads and intro tutorials.

  • Friday, September 14, 2 to 3:30 p.m.
  • Friday, November 9, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Advanced VR Interactions in Unity

In this workshop, you will learn how to create more advanced VR interactions within Unity. Explore ways to control grabbing, snapping, touching objects in VR, and how to create more complex rule-driven interactions. We'll even show the custom "poke" interaction system we created for pressing buttons in VR.

  • Friday, November 16, 10:30 a.m. to noon

Creating an Exterior VR Environment in Unity

Using Unity's amazing Terrain tools and a variety of pre-built elements, we'll build a beautiful landscape with trees, props, environmental sound and lighting. When complete, we'll experience what we've made in VR.

  • Friday, September 21, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Creating 3D Objects for VR in Maya

Virtual Reality isn’t very engaging without objects to interact with. Learn the basics of creating 3D models for use in Virtual Reality (and many other) applications.

  • Friday, October 5, 10:30 a.m. to noon

Creating 3D Objects for VR in Blender

Virtual Reality isn’t very engaging without objects to interact with. Learn the basics of creating 3D models for use in Virtual Reality (and many other) applications.

  • Friday, October 5, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Creating Art in VR with Quill and Medium

Creating art is an amazing experience in Virtual Reality thanks to the many creative applications available. Get an introduction to sculpting in Oculus Medium and 3D painting in Oculus Quill.

  • Friday, September 28, 2 to 3:30 p.m.

Creating Texture for VR with Substance Painter

Learn the basics of Substance Painter, one of the leading programs for creating materials for 3D objects in games and VR. We will learn how to prep models for use in Painter, and how to add textures, maps and Smart Materials that will truly bring your 3D models to life!

  • Friday, November 2, 10:30 a.m. to noon 

Virtual Reality Tutorials

Unity Unreal Engine BlendeR

Unity

get unity
Start Here - Interface Overview

Essential Unity Basics
     Game Objects and Components
     Scripts as Behavior Components
     Introduction to Lighting and Rendering

Using VR in Unity
Enabling VR - VR Overview

3D Modeling with ProBuilder
     Getting Started with ProBuilder for Unity
     Advanced Usage - Building Structures with Interior and Exterior
     Materials in ProBuilder - Texturing Part I
     UVs and Unwrapping - Texturing Part II

Unreal Engine

Get Unreal Engine
Start Here - Intro to Unreal Engine
Virtual Reality in Unreal Engine

Blender

Get Blender
Start Here - Intro to Blender