Thin Ice VR

A Monkeystack and Shackleton Epic Expedition production, Thin Ice VR is  20-minute world-first historical re-creation documentary VR experience presented by Tm Jarvis AM supported by the South Australian Film Corporation, Screen Australia, Adelaide Film Festival, Torrens University, Kathmandu and One Ocean Expeditions and Documentary Foundation Australia.

Thin Ice VR, currently in production for release in 2021, will offer an unrivalled immersive experience that will leave viewers in no doubt about the devastating effect of climate change.

100 years ago, Shackleton was on a mission to save his men from the ice, now we must save the Antarctic ice from man.

Thin Ice VR delivers the most compelling and immersive film experience ever produced on the subject of climate change. It offers a highly personal experience and literally put its audience in the centre of the story.

This project fits right in the middle of our lens to produce positive social consciousness projects that entertain, engage and educate audiences. It also ties together our skills in storytelling, interactive, experiential, animation, live-action production and simulation.

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In a project produced and designed by ABC – Behind the News, Torrens Valley University and Novus Res, our animation team contributed to this world-first VR project to bring the Kokoda story to life like never before.

The experience sends students back to 1942 with a first-hand experience of the famous Kokoda Track campaign where they can pick up weapons, run through the battle fields and witness the victories and failures first hand.

Monkeystack was brought onboard to populate highly detailed, photogrammetrically created scenes with believable soldiers with the final product processed to work in a real-time VR environment.

As this project came into the studio with significant time constraints, it was crucial to work efficiently using a range of software programs to deliver quality work within tight timeframes.

First, we tackled character modelling using Zbrush and Substance painter to create a set of believable CG soldiers. Using captures of the original uniforms, hats, backpacks and boots, our experienced team of character animators brought the soldiers to life with realistic, real-time animated actions. By using a mix of motion capture for more generic movements and hand keyed animations for more specific actions, we’re able to streamline the animation process while still delivering a quality outcome suitable for VR.

In a bid to move away from the perception that they only work with police officers, Police Credit Union engaged Monkeystack to develop a new mascot for their brand. In the six years since, POCU has surprised his TVC, web and in-branch audience with his unique universe and all that live in it – all the while telling the story of PCU and their excellent financial and insurance services and products.

After an initial introduction through a home loan TVC, “POCU” the fuzzy blue mascot now features in Police Credit Unions’s full slate of marketing materials including TVC, print, web and apps.

All the modelling, rigging and animation and renders of the POCU universe are created within the Monkeystack studio. He’s part of the family!

NOTE : The work presented in this portfolio is for demonstration purposes only; rates / offers displayed may not be current.

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Monkeystack was engaged by Austroads to produce a library of Hazard Perception Test (HPT) videos and supporting material.

This library includes 197 animated videos for motorcycle riders as well as car drivers, providing materials for the world’s first motorcycle-specific HPT.

Shown to reduce the likelihood of crashes, the computer based HPT measures a driver’s or rider’s ability to recognise potentially dangerous situations on the road and respond appropriately. The test is part of the licensing process in NSW, South Australia, Victoria, Western Australia and Queensland.

The scripts for the videos were developed around the most problematic road and traffic hazards for novice drivers and motorcyclists. Chosen scenarios were determined through an analysis of mass crass data and in-depth crash investigation data  by the Centre for Automotive Safety Research.

This new content will modernise the HPTs currently in use, and provide jurisdictions that do not have a Hazard Perception Test the opportunity to introduce one to enhance their graduated licensing system.

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