VR History – NYC

This project uses virtual reality to guide the viewer on a historically accurate tour through three snapshots of an intersection over the course of New York City history.

Ethan Printz



This Unity-based VR experience seeks to recount New York City’s history through the perpetual changing of its environments. One location is tracked through its many changes over hundreds of years. The hope is to be factual in nature, educational in context, and fun to experience. For the purposes of this virtual show, I will act as tour guide through the historical environment, guiding viewers through a first-person view while explaining the historical significance of the environments. The location I chose for this incarnation of the project is just off the Northeast corner of Washington Square Park, on the street of Washington Square East, as this location had an abundance of historical reference material to examine and carries personal weight for many of the students in our community. I examined hundreds of photos, drawing, maps, and writings to construct these environments as realistically as possible- though there is still some manipulation of the visual environment and usage of assets to cut down on modeling time needed in light of my other four final projects. Movement in the experience is teleportation-based, both around the environment and onto points in order to teleport between time periods. While the project is in a perfectly presentable and feature-complete at the moment, there will nonetheless be some small additions to it by the time of the show. I’ll scatter about some of my reference materials within the scene, will improve the audio soundscapes, and will touch up the modeling and placement of assets within the scenes.

IMA/ITP New York
Immersive Experiences (UG)