As much as game development engines have come on a lot over the past couple of decades, they are in some ways still rather clunky. Using a 2D interface and input peripheral to play with a 3D world isn’t particularly intuitive, but what if you could step into that third dimension? That’s what Garry’s Mod and Rust developer, Facepunch, has made: a virtual reality level editor, compatible with the HTC Vive.
In the six minutes or so of silent video, a Facepunch representative can be seen creating a detailed and expansive indoor environment, with multiple levels, corridors, open areas and stairs. All of it is controlled using the two motion controllers, using intuitive and common place movements to generate the different aspects of the map being built, in a very drag and drop style.
Although the level editor seems mainly geared towards geometry mapping rather than creating or applying textures and more visual flair, the developer is shown playing around with directional light sources and shadows are rendered in real time relevant to the universal light source.
One caveat given in the video’s description, is that there was some tracking issues at times with the controllers not being picked up by the Lighthouse system, but that was said to be caused by people moving around and blocking off the sensors at times.
This isn’t the first time a developer has looked into virtual reality development though. Epic Games recently showed off a video of UE4 running perfectly well in VR, again using the HTC Vive and its dual motion controllers.
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KitGuru Says: This looks pretty good fun just in itself. I can see a lot more people getting into the idea of modding games or building new levels, if it’s as easy to understand as this is. Compared to traditional editors, this looks like a walk in the park.