Google’s VR art creation app Tilt Brush isn’t free, but the company made it open source a few days ago after announcing it has stopped active development, so it was only a matter of time before independent developers got under the hood to publish their own Tilt Brush-derived apps. Now you can play around with the first batch on PC VR and Oculus Quest.
Open Brush – PC VR
Developer Icosa Gallery has published its own fork of the Tilt Brush software, dubbed Open Brush. Although there’s a few missing features for now, notably the ability to use the eraser, Open Brush is already enabling some of the hidden brushes that Google never released before shelving the project.
You can download the experimental build of Open Brush over at Itch.io for free, and get painting through SteamVR-compatible headsets right now.
Icosa Gallery says there’s also a Quest version in the works, however it’s not ready just yet.
SideSketch – Quest
If you own an Oculus Quest or Quest 2, you can also test out the latest third-party clone from developer Shane Harris, called SideSketch.
For now it appears to be a direct clone without any added features, albeit free of charge. Like Open Brush on PC, SideSketch is missing the eraser function.
To get SideSketch, you’ll need to set up SideQuest on your Quest headset, the unofficial app store for all things Quest. Check out our simple guide of how (and why) to use SideQuest to get up and running with SideSketch and a plethora of free and paid apps.
Tilt Brush for WebXR
The amazing thing about WebXR is that all you need is a URL, a compatible web browser and a PC VR or Quest headset to start playing and connecting in virtual spaces.
WebXR applications are notably smaller than apps that require a direct download and installation, and it seems a WebXR Tilt Brush derivative from developer Daniel Adams of msub2, called Silk Brush, is still brewing as a result.
— m₂ (@msub2official) January 29, 2021
At the moment, Adams says its still only capable of basic drawing, as he’s still working on integrating the wand’s complete set of functions—not a simple task since it needs to be light enough to run in-browser.
Seeing Tilt Brush as a potential WebXR application is really exciting though. Not only will users be able to pop in and create things quickly, but the hypothetical addition of multiplayer could make it a great place to quickly connect with others for everything from product ideation to collaborative art. Adams hasn’t mentioned that bit yet, although it was buried in the code as a ‘to-do’ by Google before they stopped active development.
If you’re looking to paint via WebXR now though, check out Mozilla’s A-Painter as a great alterative.
Know of any apps making use of Tilt Brush code? Let us know in the comments below!