The virtual reality experience of Angkor adapts the cartography of the Angkor virtual map project for the VR viewer.
Crafting a real-time VR simulation of Angkor
Once inside the VR environment, viewers can move through a map of Angkor’s urban core, with the city stretching out roughly at waist level. Leaning down near to the landscape prompts a peal of location-based soundscapes emanating from the temples, roads, and fields. Mixed in among these field recordings are the sounds of reconstructed Angkorian instruments created by ethnomusicologist Patrick Kersale, based on bas-relief imagery of instruments that have long since vanished from Cambodia. Using a controller, the VR user can select animated markers that transport them to scenes of daily life at ground level.
The “X-ray” aesthetic of the opening map mimics the way that LiDAR scans the landscape for hidden features, but our reconstruction process effectively reverses LiDAR technology. The 3-D models that are visible on the map denote the virtual reconstructions of Angkor that we have extrapolated upon, or assembled “on top” of the LiDAR data. The result is a visualization of the living city of Angkor growing out of its archaeological imprint.
Development Team – Tom Chandler, Mike Yeates, Chandara Ung, Michael Neylan, Su-Yiin Lai, Anita Lin, Sara Teh, Chulsa Heng
Collaborations – Martin Polkinghorne, Flinders University; Patrick Kersale, ethno-archaeo-musicologist