Skip to content

What Google's Blocks Could Mean for the Future of Virtual Reality

What Google's Blocks Could Mean for the Future of Virtual Reality

Google introduced a new VR-based toolset called Blocks that will specifically allow developers to create and design 3D objects —  for use with VR experiences —  in their natural environment.

To put it more simply, this tool allows anyone to create 3D objects from within a VR environment. Just don a 3D VR headset and get cracking.

Now, the objects you can create with Blocks are fairly simple. You won’t be able to design any super detailed creations – yet. But, then again, the landscape of most VR applications right now is still conducive to simple designs.

This technology is new enough that merely being able to experience it is still ground-breaking for many users. However, as VR applications evolve, we’ll likely see programs like Blocks evolve as well to be able to handle more complicated 3D modeling.

With that in mind, here’s a look at what Blocks allows you to do today:

More Involvement and Content Are Coming

Without Blocks, developers who want to create 3D VR objects, environments and experiences must have programming and software development experience. There’s just no way around it, because this is how modern software works.

Blocks, however, allows just about any creative to get involved, even those without software and development experience.

This is because it allows you to create 3D objects using your “hands” in a VR space. It offers all the tools, shapes, textures and space you need to create something unique —  using more conventional manipulation and visual editing techniques.

It’s akin to putting all the materials —  and knowledge —  in front of you and setting you free. You’re limited only by your skills and what you can do within the Blocks toolset.

It Sounds Expensive

Believe it or not, Google is offering Blocks completely free to anyone interested in using the creative tool. In fact, it already works on the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, so if you own either of those headsets, you can already check it out.

More advanced users can create objects and content using Blocks, and then export them to professional tools like Tilt Brush and Windows 3D Builder.

If you want to get your hands on it, you can download it in the respective marketplaces for the platform of your choice — either Steam or the Oculus Store.

What’s So Special About It?

Before you can have those VR experiences you clamor for, someone has to design and build them.

Without the proper development and creative skills, that makes the process available to only a select few who understand the ins and outs. Google Blocks takes the concept of creating 3D VR objects and makes it available to everyone willing to learn the toolset.

Hopefully, that means more content and experiences will be available soon. In the end, more VR content is always a good thing, especially in the niche industries major developers aren’t already focused on creating content for.

It means we’ll see more medical, construction, retail and even more outside-the-box experiences we never have before.

Weekly Newsletter

See More