SteamVR environment Star Wars Cloud City Catwalk (Rancor Viral April fool joke)

While not my best work, it was definitely my most successful April fools prank, it has received industry coverage in the form of an article on UploadVR, the article to date has over 169,000 views.

I created the Bespin/Cloud City catwalk, for SteamVR just as a quick introduction for substance painter for my students at Capilano University, and to start creating fun VR content.  My environment has become quite popular on the SteamVR workshop (in the top ten of most subscribed items).

On April 1st, 21,000 of my subscribers who put on their VR helmet got a giant 30 foot Rancor reaching towards them, the joke was popular enough that I created a separate download for people who enjoyed the joke, and could keep the Rancor in Cloud City.

Texturing primarly focused on the platform and the end of the platform as those are the areas the user can get to.

The user spawns on the middle metal plate on top of the platform, a challenge was establishing an eye line with Rancor because of how close and large he is to the user, subsequently the rancor is a little more hunched over than I would have liked.

The above is not the original Rancor used in the prank, but an updated and rigged model, I enjoyed the scale and presence of the rancor in VR so much that I updated the model and created the pit from Return of the Jedi.

Original Aprils fool Rancor model
The original rancor model was prototyped in VR, modeled, textured, rendered and integrated into steamVR in two days.

I used Maya to model and stage, substance painter/designer for texturing, and Arnold for baking the textures.