“The cooperation with the Rakka-Leonidas team was flexible, straightforward and pleasant. We have learned ridiculously much about the opportunities of VR during the project.”
Pasi Anteroinen, Organisation Manager, Liikenneturva
VR application to crown Liikenneturva’s Fillarilla learning materials
Liikenneturva provides schools with materials and methods for teaching pupils about traffic rules. The cycling education materials titled Fillarilla, which will be published in autumn 2017, will for the first time include a game application that utilises virtual reality technology. The purpose of the application is to teach children how to cycle safely in a fun, motivating and safe manner.
“We now have a finished version of the application, and there is clearly potential for continuing to explore this not only in relation to cycling but also with other forms of traffic. We have only just scratched the surface of all the things we could use VR technology for, as its benefits for traffic safety can already be proven clearly,” says Organisation Manager Pasi Anteroinen from Liikenneturva.
Rakka Creative 360 video production
Liikenneturva had been looking for a suitable partner for implementing a VR application for some time. The project did not kick off properly until Liikenneturva chose Rakka Creative as a partner. Rakka Creative was chosen as the supplier of an application project, the technical implementation of which was carried out by Leonidas.
“Ilmari provided us with a good and persuasive vision of how Liikenneturva’s wishes could be implemented into a functional product. The expertise of both Rakka Creative and Leonidas played a key role in the project, as we at Liikenneturva had no specific idea of how a VR solution is built in a technological sense. Open discussion about our goals, the possibilities and cost efficiency were important in this project,” Anteroinen sums up.
Rakka Creative, which specialises in shooting and producing 360 video, produced a demo video that proved the concept’s functionality.
“After the demo, we designed the game’s contents and looked over different traffic situations with experts from Liikenneturva. In the visual design, we had to consider many things, such as the perspective of a 9 to 12-year-old child and the speed at which the bicycle has to move so that it does not make the player feel nauseous. Finally, we polished up the video technique as much as we could. I never use ready solutions. I always customise the equipment used for shooting almost on a take-by-take basis,” says CEO Ilmari Huttu-Hiltunen from Rakka Creative.
Traffic education is one of Liikenneturva’s areas of expertise, and the application was created in close cooperation with its teaching and traffic information professionals.
“The cooperation with the Rakka-Leonidas team was flexible, straightforward and pleasant. As professionals in production and technology, they understood that the customer does not always understand and had the patience to deepen our knowledge. We have learned ridiculously much about the opportunities of VR during the project,” says Anteroinen from Liikenneturva.
Leonidas 360 Player
Ilmari from Rakka Creative used 360 technology to compile the recorded materials into a gamified story, after which Leonidas implemented the first demo version of the application with Unity for Samsung Gear VR. The demo was used to gather feedback, which was then used as a basis for several iteration rounds to improve the user experience.
The sounds in the demo were first made with Google Translator and later together with audio professionals. The project members progressed towards the final application by making small tweaks: they determined when and for how long the user looks at each target and added both an indicator to help direct the user’s gaze and guiding arrows to show the direction in which the user must look at the beginning of the video.
“It’s a great feeling to be able to make things that matter. Now my own child will be able to practise navigating traffic in an actual traffic situation, without any danger,” says Ilmari Huttu-Hiltunen from Leonidas while Harri and Kari nod their heads next to him. “Our technical and content cooperation with Rakka Creative has progressed smoothly and will continue with new media in the future,” continues CEO Kari Peltola from Leonidas.
“Like moving in traffic but without any danger.”
The pupils of Turenki Primary School already had the chance to test the application and gave it enthusiastic feedback:
“Much more fun than a textbook.”
“It feels real. Like moving in traffic but without any danger.”
“A world of its own, almost like a painting.”
“It was exciting, but also really fun.”
Teachers and other people interested in teaching were able to try out a demo version of the application at the Educa trade fair, and the finished application has now been delivered to the 12 regional offices of Liikenneturva for adults and children to try out and give feedback on.
“I have also presented the VR application to professionals in the field of traffic safety at international events. They indicated widespread interest in a possible English-language version,” says Pasi Anteroinen with satisfaction.
For more comments and children’s reactions, see Liikenneturva’s video: