Game publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment and developer Camouflaj recently released a brand new behind-the-scenes video of upcoming VR game Marvel’s Iron Man VR.
Iron Man VR new video
BTS video featured how the developers tackled flying in virtual reality. They
also revealed a timelapse illustration of the game’s original Impulse Armor.
the full details here:
During the initial ideation process, the team at
Camouflaj knew we had to execute on a number of essential components to bring
the Iron Man fantasy to life in virtual reality. Feeling like you’re wearing
the suit, blasting your Repulsors, viewing the world through a full
three-dimensional HUD, and being the complex (and inventive) Tony Stark
character were all key, but none more important than nailing the sensation that
you’re flying around as Iron Man in virtual reality.
In order to convince the team at Marvel Games that
Camouflaj was the ideal developer to bring Iron Man to virtual reality, we knew
we had to demonstrate that flying as Iron Man in virtual reality is not only
comfortable, but wildly fun and liberating. To compound the challenge, we had
only a few precious weeks to sign our next project, so, like Tony Stark in the
cave with his back against the wall, we brushed aside all mortal concerns and
faced the challenge head-on.
During those first few days of preparation, I hosted
meetings with our team to determine what should be included in the ultimate
Marvel’s Iron Man VR pitch. One day later, Troy Johnsen, an engineer on the
team, came back with what felt like the perfect prototype. As many of you
probably know, so much of game development—as with Iron Man himself—is about
experimenting and not giving up, even in the face of seemingly impossible
With 48 hours left until the pitch, we packed our gear
into a rental car and drove from Seattle to Los Angeles. Our lead writer
Brendan Murphy drove most of the way while Troy, Brendan’s dog Remy, and I
continued to noodle on the pitch on my laptop. During the long road trip,
whenever we expressed concerns about Marvel signing the game, we reminded each
other of what was in the trunk of the car: a magic prototype that convinces
almost anyone who plays it that, not only is Iron Man perfect for VR, but that
Camouflaj was the team to realize the dream.
Needless to say, the team at Marvel Games loved the
pitch—especially the prototype—and we began the long drive back home to Seattle
beaming with energy. What then transpired was years of hard work building the
story, features, and technology while Troy continued to experiment, tweak, and
polish in service of delivering true Super Hero aerial freedom. Without getting
too much into the weeds, here are some ingredients in the secret sauce:
The key reason it feels so good and natural to fly as
Iron Man in our game is because we obey Newton’s laws of motion. We doubled
down on how it would work in real life, which, it turns out, your brain really
appreciates. Every frame we process includes calculations of up to a dozen
forces, such as thrust, drag, and gravity—as well as our assistance
systems—that output Iron Man’s accurate and believable trajectory through the
Whenever possible, we preserve the player’s forward
momentum. These systems allow the player to carve turns at high speed and enable
our dogfight mechanics.
Inspired by those balloon-like “bumpers” at bowling
alleys, we built an invisible system that cushions and guides the player around
hard edges of buildings and other geometry. The bumpers also soften the blow
when the player rams into something at high speeds. Under the hood, we account
for potential upcoming collisions and gently apply collision-avoidance forces.
Contextual Suit Settings
It turns out, the player doesn’t want to accelerate from
zero to 300 kilometers per hour when they are trying to delicately fly around
more confined spaces. Wherever more precise flight speed is needed, we apply
different suit settings based on context. This allows the player to utilize
their thrusters for both small-scale maneuvers as well as unlocking full-blown,
face-melting thrust when they need it.
The game will launch on PlayStation VR. It will be released this year.