Home » VR-REU 2023 » Habin Park: The Community Game Development Toolkit

Habin Park: The Community Game Development Toolkit

Project: The Community Game Development Toolkit – Creating easy-to-use tools in Unity to help students and artists tell their story and show their artwork in a game like format.

Mentor:  Daniel Lichtman

About Me: I’m CUNY BA student majoring in Game Design and Entrepreneurship at Hunter College.

Week 1: Project Proposal and Toolkit Exploration

This week, I had the time to explore and delve into the toolkit developed by Daniel Lichtman. This toolkit was specifically designed to aid in various projects To gain a deeper understanding of its functionalities, I decided to open and explore an example project using the toolkit.


Utilizing the tools provided by Daniel Lichtman’s toolkit, I created my own custom scene with a custom HDRI and some art assets.

Using these tools I learned how they were supposed to be used and the current process for adding them to a Unity project and making a new presentation with them.

Additionally, I worked on crafting a comprehensive project proposal that outlined the details of my research paper. This involved carefully articulating the scope, objectives, and methodology of my study, ensuring that the proposal provided a clear roadmap for my research endeavors. It also included a timeline so that I could properly plan out and schedule my progress.

Lastly, I made progress in completing the CITI certification process for research protocols.

Week 2: Literature Review and SciComs Symposium

During the second week of REU, I did some extensive paper reading as I starteded compiling my related works and literature review. This crucial step allowed me to gain a comprehensive understanding of the existing research related to my project. To further advance my project, I took the initiative to set up a VR Unity project and installed the necessary software to begin developing a VR locomotion system in Unity, utilizing an Oculus Quest 2.

To streamline my work and ensure efficient collaboration, I transferred all my current project components, including the project proposal, abstract, and relevant sources, to Overleaf from Google Docs. With this step, I started writing my research paper, which I eagerly began. The initial section I tackled was the related works, which encompassed a section on VR art design, VR toolkits, and previous papers highlighting the comparison between VR and 2D mediums of communication.

Additionally, I had the privilege of attending the CUNY Student SciComs Symposium, an amazing event where student scientists presented their research to two distinct audiences: their peers and the general public. These short presentations not only included contextual descriptions of their work but also incorporated visual aids to facilitate comprehension. Engaging in a lively Q&A session with the audience further enriched the experience.

Among these presentations, the one that stood out the most to me was on malaria. The researcher shed light on how the malaria parasite infects and causes harm to the liver, which currently lacks effective cures. To address this pressing issue, the scientist is trying to replicate liver damage in mice, paving the way for testing potential cures. This presentation exemplified the innovative approaches being pursued to tackle real-world challenges, leaving a lasting impression on me.

Week 3:

During this third week, I have been engaged in conducting research on VR technology. One significant milestone I achieved was writing the methodology for my upcoming VR research paper.

Additionally, I started work on a VR compatible Unity project where I created an prototype layout for an art project.

Central to this project is the implementation of a VR locomotion system, which aims to enhance user immersion and interaction within the virtual environment. Furthermore, as part of this project, I learned how to directly connect an Oculus Quest 2 headset to the Unity project.

Lastly, I started learning how to use VMD to visualize molecules and atoms.

Week 4:

This week I worked on the methodology section of my paper implementing some of the feedback from my mentor into the paper. In addition, I created a demo level and populated it with art to showcase what a potential art project would look like. It was a great way to bring my project to life within the virtual world. By carefully selecting and placing the art assets, I aimed to create an immersive experience that would captivate the viewer’s imagination. I first found some free assets on the Unity asset store to create a simple courtyard and environment with. I then found some copyright free art to place in the level as resemble what an artist would potentially do in their work.
My level results looks like the following.

To further progress the toolkit, I integrated the Oculus Quest 2 headset. I successfully connected the headset and got the Unity project to work seamlessly inside it. Now, the viewer could step into the virtual environment and feel as though they were physically present within the level.

Week 5:

During the fifth week, my main focus was on developing and adding to the website that contains all the necessary instructions for the VR project toolkit. This involved detailing the setup process and providing step-by-step guidance for implementing the toolkit with screenshots and text. Additionally, I compiled a list of settings for Professor Litchman to incorporate into the toolkit, aiming to get rid of some of the setup steps.

In order to ensure the toolkit’s effectiveness, I sought assistance from artists whom I am acquainted with. I requested their participation in testing the toolkit for the study, and fortunately, three of them agreed to help out.

Aside from the project work, we had an enjoyable experience as a team during this week. We embarked on a delightful river lunch cruise, which granted us the opportunity to admire the captivating Manhattan shoreline and the iconic Statue of Liberty. The lunch was delightful, and it provided a pleasant setting for us to get better acquainted with one another and learn about everyone’s well-being.

Week 6:
During this week, we had the July 4th holiday, which caused a slight delay in sending out the instructions to our case study testers. However, on July 5th, I promptly distributed the instructions and provided a comprehensive explanation to the testers regarding the purpose of the study and the specific objectives of the toolkit being tested.

In addition to providing instructions, I created a survey for the testers. This survey was designed to gather both quantitative and qualitative data, allowing us to gain a better understanding of the testers’ experiences. To ensure best responses, I included open-ended questions, providing the testers with the opportunity to provide detailed feedback.

Lastly, as we decided to focus on a single study instead of two, I dedicated some time to rewriting the research paper that I had previously prepared. This adjustment allowed me to revise the paper for the new study approach, ensuring the coherence and accuracy of the paper.

Week 7:
During the seventh week, my main focus was to provide assistance and guidance to the users/testers of the toolkit as they carried out their testing. I dedicated my time to addressing any questions they had and ensuring a smooth testing process for them.

In addition to supporting the testers, I devoted some time to organizing the structure of my paper. Specifically, I outlined the sections for the User Study, Results and Analysis, Discussions, and Conclusion. This preparation allowed me to establish a clear way for me to present my findings.

As I awaited the availability of the necessary data, I also began working on writing the User Study section of the paper. Since I did not have the data required for Results and Analysis at this point, I focused on writing the details of the User Study itself especially on how it was conducted.

To ensure the effective presentation of the data, I consulted with Dr. Oyewole. Together, we discussed utilizing a tabular format to convey the findings, considering the small number of participants involved in the study. This approach would help provide a concise and organized presentation of the data.

Towards the end of the week, I received the data I needed from the three testers. With this information, I am now ready to proceed with completing the remaining sections of the paper in this final week.


Week 8:
In the final week of the project, I gave a presentation of my project and what I have been working on this summer. This presentation was attended by mentors, fellow participants, and invited guests. It provided an excellent opportunity to showcase my hard work and the outcomes of the study.

During this week, I dedicated considerable effort to finalize the research paper. I completed the remaining sections, including the User Study, Results and Analysis, Discussion, and Conclusion. Additionally, to enhance the paper’s clarity and visual appeal, I incorporated relevant images to support the presented data.

Furthermore, I successfully completed the submission process for the ACM ISS conference. Hopefully they will accept this paper since that would be a great achievement for me, and would be something I would be quite proud of.

As part of the final steps, I uploaded the developed toolkit to GitHub for Dr. Oyewole and other participants to look at.

In conclusion, the final week was marked by significant progress as well as a successful presentation, which included the completion of the research paper and conference submission. This culmination of efforts reflects the dedication and hard work put forth during the entire duration of the VR REU program. I am grateful to Dr. Oyewole, my mentor Professor Daniel Lichtman, and all the other participants for an amazing experience.

Final Paper:
Habin Park, Daniel Lichtman, and Oyewole Oyekoya. 2023. Exploring Virtual Reality Game Development as an Interactive Art Medium: A Case Study with the Community Game Development Toolkit. In Companion Proceedings of the 2023 Conference on Interactive Surfaces and Spaces (ISS Companion ’23). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 5–9. https://doi.org/10.1145/3626485.3626530 – pdf


Hunter College
City University of New York
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New York, NY 10065

Telephone: +1 (212) 396-6837
Email: oo700 at hunter dot cuny dot edu

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