Collaborative VR and Sound Design — The Machine Stops — Homeless
The brief described how we would adapt a 1909 short story by EM Forster as an Immersive VR Experience. Working together with second year students of the BA Sound Design (Milo’s students) we will be creating a computer generated world which VR users would progress through (Scene 1, Scene 2, Scene 3) to proscribe a narrative arc that reflects chapter 3 of The Machine Stops. Along the way they would encounter interactive activities relevant to the storyline — hitting buttons in the user’s own futuristic hexagon-heavy room to activate lights, shower, bed etc — and they would meet avatars appropriate to each scene, with actions and verbal utterances in keeping with the themes of the original book. The Machine Stops imagines a future where the whole of civilisation is extremely reliant upon technology, to the extent that all their needs are cared for. In Chapter 3 the Machine does in fact Stop which offers excellent opportunities for the Sound Design Team (SDT) Jack, Milo, Cyrus, Giacomo) to create sounds for the machine when it is functioning smoothly, when it becomes erratic, when it completely malfunctions and ultimately when it explodes due to an airship plunging into a “vomitory” as a consequence of The Machine finally meeting its demise.