Paper Birds, the animated virtual reality (VR) short which recently won Best Animation Experience at the Raindance Immersive Awards has now arrived for Oculus Quest, well the first part has.
A collaborative project between Latin American studio 3DAR, Baobab Studios and Facebook’s Oculus, Paper Birds tells the story of a young musician named Toto (played by Jojo Rabbit star Archie Yates). His music (performed by Argentine tango musician Juan Jose Mosalini) encourages a mysterious flock of paper birds to appear.
In doing so Toto discovers they’re key to unlocking a doorway from his physical world into a dark invisible one. Clocking in at 20-minutes, Paper Birds also features interactive moments which utilise Oculus Quest’s hand tracking.
“Because Paper Birds is built upon music, we’ve been inspired to use the most cutting-edge new feature of the Oculus Quest — hand tracking — to take audiences inside a world in which they can see, and even paint, with music,” says writer/director and CEO of 3DAR, German Heller. “We’re inviting users to interact with the story in ways in which your reason to participate isn’t about solving a puzzle or defeating a challenger. We want to bring you deeper inside the story, to create stronger empathy with the characters, using the best of what VR can offer.”
“The entire universe of Paper Birds is not only miniaturized but handcrafted to feel like each and every element has been uniquely moulded, carved, shaped and painted by artisans, so much so that you want to reach out and touch them,” says Baobab Studios’ head of content Kane Lee. “It’s a testament to the directors and we’re so proud to have German and Federico as part of our growing family of storytellers with singular visions we get to build wholly original characters and worlds with.”
Baobab Studios has created a number of VR interactive shorts over the years, its latest Baba Yaga will also be an Oculus Quest title, scheduled for 2021.
Paper Birds: Part 1 is exclusively available on the Oculus Quest today retailing for £3.99 GBP, with the second and final instalment released in 2021. For further updates on the latest VR animation, keep reading VRFocus.