An arm reaches out of water…
I’m in a headset and I see my hand going for the emerging arm. It’s obvious where my target is in the physical space and it pulls me into an amazing world under the ocean where fish dart past me so quickly that I can barely dodge my head fast enough.
It’s not just the water experience that’s immersive… it’s the depth of 3D that’s really bringing me there, making the fish and coral more real and my movement through the environment have context. At this moment I’m realizing that 3D is the most important aspect of telling story in VR/360 video.
The fact is VR is an entirely new platform that works with a more complex set of basic needs. To have true immersion you must have a camera that mimics the human eye just like you need a headset that showcases right and left. It’s a relatively simple thing once you really delve into this thought process:
How are we making this reality real?
First off, you have to take away any reason that something would feel fake. The first massive reason is that…
you just can’t live inside of FLAT.
Flat isn’t real. Flat is the enemy of reality because nothing is truly flat unless it is in context to something that isn’t flat.
Flat is the worst four-letter word in VR.
When most people think of 3D they think of movies. This technology has seen revivals and heydays throughout it’s lifecycle because it is an add-on. It is a sideshow in a way and it gives theatre chains and studios a reason to upcharge an audience for a spectacle.
Personally, I love 3D movies and I’m always down to dish out a few extra bucks and don a pair of glasses to go see movies like Doctor Strange or Avatar. While it often adds a layer on to movies or television it’s not something that’s gonna keep me from seeing a movie.
VR is the exact opposite.
If you go into an experience in a headset that was shot in monoscopic you will have a less-than experience. You will feel that you are inside of a painted globe and it will feel fake. We are at a time in which VR should amaze people. You only get ONE first time and if someone is going into a headset and seeing a monoscopic flat experience they’re being cheated of this key component.
This is why 3D has become the industry standard. There’s not one major studio that’s shooting high quality film that’s not utilizing multi camera rigs to produce content for the masses.
3D (or stereoscopic) 360 video is something that I’m quite passionate about and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it is the future of content creation. While monoscopic cameras have their place for hobbyists and scouting locations if you’re putting your efforts into creating great content it is imperative to go the extra mile, spend the extra money and do the extra work to produce something better.