The ghost howls

A blog of virtual reality, startup and stuff



Unity CEO John Riccitiello says that VR will become mainstream in 2019… and I agree

At VRLA Unity CEO John Riccitiello expressed his opinion about virtual reality market in the future… he has been very realistic and so I loved what he said.

The reason for so much love is that he showcased a cold analysis on the VR market, based on his expertise and the numbers owned by Unity, which is one of the most important solution for VR experiences development.

So, finally an analysis not driven by what we want, what we’d like to happen and by what we see in our biased surroundings. Because yes, let’s be honest: we see virtual reality everywhere just because we are a lot involved in the VR ecosystem: reading reddit posts or my twitter feed, it seems that VR is everywhere, while all my friends here own a smartphone but do not have a virtual reality headset. And a good number of them do not even want one. Continue reading “Unity CEO John Riccitiello says that VR will become mainstream in 2019… and I agree”

Unity VR Editor review

There’s been a lot of hype about game engines with VR editors in the last months. The first one has been Unreal Engine, showcasing a solution for HTC Vive (because at that time it was the only headset with proper VR controllers) and then of course Unity decided to do something similar, announcing a VR editor with Vive and then Oculus support. With “VR editor” I mean the editor of the game engine that instead of running on your flat screen with you interacting with mouse and keyboard, runs on your VR headset in 3D, with you interacting with objects with your VR controllers.

Continue reading “Unity VR Editor review”

HoloLens scene initialization

Yesterday I started collaborating in a little project that uses HoloLens (with Andrea… do you remember the guy of presence vs immersion article?) and as every normal guy working with this new device, I started looking at Microsoft Academy videos and articles.

First thing I discovered is that HoloLens requires you to change lots of settings in scene and in build parameters and this is soooooo boring. So I’ve said to myself “why can’t I write an editor script and do all this stuff automatically? I’ve already made something similar for our multi-build setup of ImmotionRoom, so it is something that I know how to do in few minutes”. Two hours of scripting later I discovered that maybe I over-estimated my capabilities (and the documentation of Unity Editor classes). And, even worse, I discovered that this feature is already present in that swiss knife that lies under the name of HoloToolKit (if you develop for HoloLens in Unity and you don’t use the HoloToolKit, you’re just a fool) 😀

Total facepalm (image by

Continue reading “HoloLens scene initialization”

How to change Virtual Reality SDKs list in Unity Build settings (via script)

Just a quick article to help people that are desperate like I was yesterday. Yesterday I was implementing the develop-once-build-everywhere facility of our ImmotionRoom system: it’s a very nice menu where you can choose the headset you’re developing for and then it sets for you all settings, prefab and stuff so that you can build your program for every headset you want without changing a single line of code or modifiying your scene. Cool, isn’t it?

cross platform full body vr
The amazing multi-build menu now available on ImmotionRoom SDK: this way developing full body games for all platforms have become super easy… you just need to click on a menu entry!

Well, I was getting crazy because I was developing some editor scripts to implement it and then I didn’t manage to find how to change via script that damn Virtual Reality SDKs list that you can see in your Player Settings. Changing the Virtual reality Supported flag is super-easy and documented, but I could not find a way to change the other thing and in PlayerSettings class I couldn’t manage to find a solution. Continue reading “How to change Virtual Reality SDKs list in Unity Build settings (via script)”

Getting started with Oculus Touch and Avatar SDK in Unity

Welcome to 2017! I wish to you all that this will be an astonishing year!

In 2016 I left you with this video showcasing my first experiments with Oculus Touch, Avatar SDK, in cooperation with our ImmotionRoom full body system. As you can see in the video, there are female full body avatars made with ImmotionRoom (so, basically, made using a Microsoft Kinect) and epic-bearded blue avatars made using Oculus Avatar SDK. Then there is some firing, because firing in VR is always cool!

This demo took me more time than expected, due to some problems I had in using the Avatar SDK. That’s why I’m writing this article: to help you in developing using this SDK wasting less time than me. It will not be a step-by-step tutorial, but I’ll give you some detailed hints. So, ready… go! Continue reading “Getting started with Oculus Touch and Avatar SDK in Unity”

How to show a video in a Texture with Unity on Android

Yesterday I’ve been asked about how to display a video inside a hobbist AR application in Unity, so I’m writing this tutorial to help people having the same problem.

You know, in Unity to display a movie inside a texture, you have to use a MovieTexture. MovieTextures are cool and work flawlessly, but… they don’t work on Android. The only thing that you can do in Android is showing the movie full screen using methods of HandHeld class. But… if you are going to develop a mobile VR or AR application and you want to show the movie inside a quad (maybe because this is the screen of a TV inside your game), this is absolutely useless. So, how can you do it? I can give you some hints.

  1. Develop your own solution. This is the preferred answer if you have time to employ in doing it and/or you want to learn how this stuff works. Or if this is a critical piece of your applications, so you develop it once for all and then you use it forever. Here you have to find a way to open your movie file (OpenCV can be an option), then read every frame and put it on a texture using Unity methods. Of course some optimizations have to be performed or everything will come out super-laggy (very low FPS).
  2. Continue reading “How to show a video in a Texture with Unity on Android”

The Disruptive Technologies Conference is sold out!

Do you remember the Disruptive Technologies Conference (DTC) I was talking about some days ago? If you forgot it… well, it’s an event we of Immotionar are organizing here in Turin, an event about augmented reality and virtual reality (including full-body virtual reality, with our ImmotionRoom solution!), an event where we will talk about development for this technologies, where we will talk about the future.

Well… the good news is: we are sold out! In only ten days, the tickets were all taken! More than 100 people will attend it, we’re so happy! Thank you all for your love! If you missed the ticket, don’t worry… we’ll try to stream the event live, so you can follow us anyway! Cheers!

The Oculus Unity Pro Trial: should you take it?

Some days ago I opened my email and received a mail by Oculus saying that:

Since you’re one of our Rift pre-order pioneers, you get a free trial of Unity Pro! Your unique access code is available now, but expires December 31, 2016.

I was one of the one pre-ordering the Oculus Rift CV1 in January and living all the shipping mess (Pepperidge Farm Remembers!). So, now, Oculus rewards me with a free trial of Unity Pro! Cool! I’m a Unity Developer… this trial interests me a lot. But I’m not going to activate it. Continue reading “The Oculus Unity Pro Trial: should you take it?”

How can you begin developing for virtual reality?

Continuing my serie on the most asked questions on reddit (I already answered about if you have to buy a VR headset and which one you should buy), today I’ll talk about what do you need to know to start developing some games in virtual reality.

So, how can you begin developing for virtual reality? What do you need to know?

I’ll just tell you a little secret: developing for virtual reality requires almost exactly the same skills of any other 3D games development. But keep this secret for yourself: it is so cool when you impress people saying them that you’re a virtual reality developer and girls just go crazy for it because they think that you’re some kind of futurist superhero, like Johnny Mnemonic. Continue reading “How can you begin developing for virtual reality?”

Blog at

Up ↑