Today marks the start of the SHVR Vive Jam, a weekend-long event giving Chinese developers a chance to prototype room-scale experiences on the HTC Vive. Hosted at the Transist office in Shanghai, the jam has drawn developers from across China and beyond.
With support from HTC and AMD, the SHVR Jam kicked off today at Transist, a social entrepreneurship accelerator in the heart of Shanghai. Of the five HTC Vive development kits in all of China, the jam hosts three of them, along with Asia’s sole Project Quantum PC from AMD. The event has drawn out more than just equipment; joining the event for support are key VR representatives from AMD and HTC, including chief of staff to HTC’s CEO.
SHVR organizers spent the morning preparing the Transist office for an influx of developers. With 70,000 watts coming into the building, power was less of a concern than the heat produced by all the people and powerful developer stations. The organizers trucked in massive ice cubes to keep the Shanghai summer heat at bay.
Some 40 developers from around China and even a team from the U.S. arrived to work with the Vive, many for the first time. A few notable Chinese VR developers attending are DataNetwork, TianShe Media, ifgames, and VRKingKong, and although not officially representing their companies, a few developers working at CCP Shanghai, Virtuos, and Shanghai Art institution.
The Jam started with developers getting a chance to try the Vive for themselves, seeing demos like TheBlu Encounter, Tilt Brush, and Job Simulator. From the start the developers have 48 hours to develop their prototypes, with the workspace being open for access around the clock.
A majority of developers are working within Unity to create room-scale experiences that conform to the Jam’s theme of Ancient China. SHVR organizers have been providing logistical support to get developers up and running, offering hardware, development templates (with basics like object grabbing and physics with momentum-based tossing), and of course food.
Now into the morning hours, many developers have gone home for much needed rest, but some remain, burning the midnight oil and testing their experiences on the Vive development kits. Tomorrow teams will return to continue honing their projects, with the Jam culminating on Sunday.
Road to VR is proud to be the official media sponsor of the SHVR Jam and will be bringing you further reports from the event throughout the weekend. Stay tuned!