Five UK virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) projects have been awarded funding through CreativeXR, an initiative from Digital Catapult and Arts Council England.
The five projects will receive a total amount of £350,000, alongside match funding and support from a range of creative technology and cultural organisations.
They were chosen from a first round which saw 20 teams develop prototypes; the chosen five will now be able to further develop their projects, making them publicly available.
The successful projects are:
- Fatherland by Limbik, Norwich & Portsmouth: An interactive theatre experience using real-time motion capture and VR technology that brings to life the journey of a son and father coming to terms with dementia and disembodiment in a modern world. Completed in partnership with University of Portsmouth
- Immersive Histories by All Seeing Eye Ltd, Stroud: An immersive VR experience allowing an audience to physically step into history and experience the famous ‘Dambusters’ mission from on board Guy Gibson’s Lancaster. Completed with support from Other Set and the RAF Museum
- Municipal Dreams (working title) by VR CITY LTD, London: An immersive journey into the complicated history of the notorious Aylesbury Estate, using stereoscopic 360 video, photogrammetry and 3D modelling. Completed with support from Royal Holloway University, Creation Trust and IDFA
- Traitor by Pilot Theatre, York: A two-player interactive high stakes thriller, combining VR with live action, completed with support from Pilot Theatre
- When Something Happens by Boom Clap Play, Belfast: An epic journey through the history of the cosmos – from the big bang to modern life – written and narrated by poet Boston Williams. Completed with support from Northern Ireland Screen and Northern Ireland Science Festival.
Over 1,000 teams registered interest in the CreativeXR programme at its launch last October, with 250 submissions for the open call.
The programme is developed by digital technology innovation centre Digital Catapult, which provides physical and digital facilities for experimentation and testing; and national development body Arts Council England.
According to a report by PricewaterhouseCoopers, the UK VR industry is expected to grow by 76% to reach £801m by 2021, making it the largest and fastest-growing VR industry of any country in EMEA.