This page includes active projects and positions. Check back here often for updates on both studies and development and other roles.

Zombie Ants VR (Paid)

Ants are nature’s engineers, with each species specializing and thriving in their own environments. However, as industrious and resilient as they can be, they’ve been observed to fall victim to a rather peculiar parasite: a fungus capable of infecting and zombifying its hosts! To take control of an ant’s behavior, a spore must infect their host, (without killing it), separate them from the colony, and have them latch onto a nearby raised stalk of vegetation in order to start the cycle anew.

As we continue to observe and contribute to this budding body of research, we’d like to reach out and educate curious students on what we currently know about this mysterious fungi; how it behaves, how it reproduces, and most importantly, how they control their hosts by manipulating their behavior! Zombie Ant VR is a project whose goal is to create an interactive virtual-reality experience that educates players on the science of infectious disease through the lens  of fungal zombification of ants. Each proposal must include details on why the team is the best suited to build a VR experience from the provided constraints that both entertains and educates, and can be built upon by feedback gathered from playtesting.

There are three roles that we are looking to fill, though we may end up hiring multiple people for the 3d artist role. Candidates should be ready to start immediately, and to commit for at least the remainder of the semester, though there may be an option to continue into part of the summer.‌‌

In order to apply for one of these positions, send an email to jtm [at] ucf [dot] edu with the following:

  1. Resume
  2. Portfolio Link
  3. Expression of interest and specific role applied for.
  4. Whether you’d be willing to take on production responsibilities.‌‌

Compensation is between $12.50-$15/hr depending on role and experience.

2D Artist

  • Scene art (2d, used to transition between scenes)

3D Modeler/Animator

  • Modify existing 3D models.
  • Environmental experience (outdoor, forest, underground tunnels)
  • Experience with shaders and Maya preferred
  • Will include animating the following: Ant Walk Cycle, Idle, Sniffing, references provided. Model is rigged, but requires refinements.
  • Add antennae to rig and include in animations. Antennae should be randomized through a script in-game and isolated from other animations.

Programming

  • Implement all necessary in-game choices (fix decision script to have prefabs to save choices) and design decision UI.
  • VR UI implementation and general game state programming (checkpoints, menus.

Sound Designer/Music

  • Environmental sound – work to capture and implement sounds that are localized within environment as well as curate soundscapes appropriate to each location.
  • Music either composed or sourced and integrated into gameplay.

VR Concert (Unpaid)

The CREATE lab (https://create.cah.ucf.edu/) has a VR Music project that requires assistance! There are three tasks that a project is looking for help on -- these are unpaid, but would look good on a resume or a portfolio:

  1. Programming! Google Drive Integration
  2. We need to be able to integrate Google Drive into the game/app (we will just call it an app) so that way the user can upload and access their music inside the app.
  3. Modeling/Texturing! Audience Models We need to modify the existing audience models for more variation.

The full descriptions are below:

The project is being developed in Unreal, and is designed to help musicians prepare for live performances by presenting them with an audience and sheet music.

Google Drive Integration

We need to be able to integrate Google Drive into the game/app (we will just call it an app) so that way the user can upload and access their music inside the app.

The app is supposed to give the user the ability to read sheet music on a virtual music stand (sheet music uploaded as pdf), as well as let them play to piano accompaniment (uploaded as mp3). The corresponding files will be loaded once the user chooses which song they want to display/perform.

To avoid forcing the user to access the source folders on the headset in order to upload these files, it is our hope to integrate Google Drive so the user can use their account to easily access these files.

Audience Models

We need to modify the existing audience models for more variation.

In the app, there will be audience models/avatars that serve as the virtual audience. Currently, we only have 4 different models in the app, which leads to a lot of repetition. Therefore, we need to alter the existing models by re-skinning, etc. to introduce some more variety. I also have access to more audience models, but they will need to be turned low-poly before using.