Today, we’re excited to share that Blocks—Google’s latest VR app—is now available on the Oculus Store.
Blocks lets you build 3D models in virtual space. We sat down with Google Group Product Manager Jason Toff for the inside scoop on this new, immersive art tool.
What was the inspiration for Blocks?
Jason Toff: 3D objects are the building blocks of AR and VR experiences, but making them is hard! We built Blocks to make it easy for anyone—even people without any modeling experience—to make beautiful 3D objects.
What’s the coolest thing you’ve seen created using the app so far?
JT: There are so many good ones! Here are some of my favorites.
This is your first VR app to be released across multiple platforms simultaneously at launch. Did you encounter any obstacles during the design process? If so, how did you overcome those challenges?
JT: The Unity plugins for Oculus and Steam did a lot of the heavy lifting for us, leaving us free to focus on taking advantage of the unique benefits of each platform. The capacitive sensors on the Touch controllers, for example, gave us additional options for when to pop up tooltips for people.
Have any professional artists gone hands-on with Blocks yet?
JT: Yes! We gave a few artists early access and have seen amazing work. Our existing Artist in Residence program will expand to include Blocks. We’ve already had two artists visit the Blocks team in NYC (Estella Tse and Danny Bittman), and we’re really excited by what they’ve been able to do with Blocks in a short amount of time.
What would an experienced artist get out of Blocks that wouldn’t be possible outside of VR? How about a complete novice?
JT: The main benefit of Blocks for an experienced artist is speed—the ability to get an idea from your head into volumetric (virtual) reality quickly. For complete novices, we’re opening the door for them to make 3D models much more easily and naturally, by creating in 3D space instead of on 2D surfaces.
Anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
JT: We’re really excited to see how people use Blocks and what they make. And we’d love to know what people think—let us know on Twitter @GoogleVR.
Thanks for taking the time to field some questions, Jason. We can’t wait for people to try out Blocks!
Check out vr.google.com/objects to see what people are making, and share your own on social with #madewithblocks.
— The Oculus Team