In Gamasutra's latest feature, From Research To Games: Interacting With 3D Space
, University of Central Florida professor Dr. Joe LaViola takes a look at practical solutions from the academic world that can be applied to Wii, Move, and Natal titles.
As the industry moves forward with the Wii, PlayStation Move, and Project Natal, among other interfaces, LaViola writes, "This paradigm shift in interaction technology holds great potential for game developers to create game interfaces and strategies never thought possible before. These interfaces bring players closer to the action and afford more immersive user experiences."
LaViola has been researching 3D interfaces since the 1990s, and says:"As a field, we have been searching for the killer app for years, and I believe we have finally found one with video games."
The good news, he writes, is that "there is a plethora of knowledge that the virtual reality and 3D user interface communities have developed over the years that are directly applicable to game developers today."
Over the course of the feature, LaViola shares many established techniques -- including practical examples. For example, one technique, called "Grabbing the Air", has been around since 1995. This technique "uses the metaphor of literally grabbing the world around you (usually empty space), and pulling yourself through it using hand gestures," he explains.
"This is similar to pulling yourself along a rope, except that the 'rope' exists everywhere, and can take you in any direction," continues LaViola. "The grabbing the air technique has many potential uses in video games including climbing buildings or mountains, swimming, and flying," writes LaViola.
Other practical examples include Ray-Casting, Occlusion Techniques, Arm Extension and many others. You can read about all of them in Gamasutra's latest feature, From Research To Games: Interacting With 3D Space
, which is live now.