Unity’s future of VR ads and how Cinemachine and Timeline will change storytelling as we know it
Introducing Unity to a whole new audience
We recently had a fantastic showing at the VR in the Sky event in New York City. Part of VR Society’s suite of events, VR in the Sky was a 2-day event that brought together content and technology professionals for presentations and demonstrations around VR, AR, 360 and MR. It was here that we unveiled a partnership with Lionsgate to deliver a first-of-its-kind VR ad experience for the film Jigsaw, and Unity’s Head of Cinematics, Adam Myhill, stunned the crowd with our powerful linear sequencing tool, Timeline, and the highly sophisticated camera technology, Cinemachine.
Virtual Room offers a new approach to VR advertising
From the 5th floor of the Time Inc building, we announced our partnership with Lionsgate to create a first-of-its-kind VR ad experience for the upcoming release of Jigsaw, the newest film in Lionsgate’s blockbuster Saw horror film series. This immersive heart-pumping Virtual Room will give players the ability to interact with objects as they learn more about the new film, and ultimately decide how to save themselves from impending doom. The Jigsaw shortform VR ad experience will launch this fall, prior to the theatrical release on October 27th. You can read the full press release.
The Virtual Room will be integrated with Unity Analytics, providing standard ad metrics, heat mapping of the users engagement, and in collaboration with Isobar, advertisers will also be able to measure the emotional response of users. Created within the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) emerging ad experience guidelines, the Virtual Room is built to provide an engaging experience for the user and distributed within existing VR apps made with Unity. A sandbox environment for brands to build their stories within our developers out-of-this-world content, and will include objects and interactions that reflect the brand and drive user engagement for developers. Imagine you’re in your favorite VR app and you come upon an entrance that presents additional content for you. You choose to enter and like Alice in Wonderland, drop into the rabbit hole.
Stunning the crowd with real-time rendering
Unity’s Head of Cinematics Adam Myhill showcased Timeline and Cinemachine for creators telling linear stories in CG (like animated films). Typically, creative decisions must be made early, and get locked in. Different teams working on layout, lighting, animation, environment, or VFX usually can’t work on the same thing at the same time, or see one another’s work and get inspired to evolve their own. But we’re helping to drive a CG revolution among these creators.
To demonstrate what real-time can mean for linear CG storytellers, he loaded up the Adam short film executable. Pausing during playback in almost any spot reveals that Unity is still rendering in real-time despite the pause state: birds are still flying, grass is still blowing in the wind, and even a gun is still firing. You can also move the lighting around, and it’s not only fun to play with, but a great way to clearly see just how powerful real-time technology can be for those used to tradition CG/VFX pipelines. Finally, he showed some demos including procedural composition, shot evaluation (with our new Clear Shot feature), and our new Post-Processing Stack. All of these make film-quality cinematography possible in any Unity experience, whether it’s a game, film, or VR project.