The development team at Epic Games is working with Alzheimer's Australia Vic and Opaque Multimedia in order to create a new experience called The Forest Project, which is designed to offer therapeutic benefits to patients who are living through dementia, using a complex virtual environment.
The idea behind the project is to create sensory therapy for patients by allowing them to move through and interact with a stimulating environment, which research has shown has the ability to soothe those who are affected by dementia.
Norman Wang, the co-founder of Opaque Multimedia, states on the official site that “The objective of The Forest Project is to improve the quality of life for people living with dementia by escaping from the monotony of their living spaces. Future expansions will include more locations, interactions and preferences. Our eventual goal is to put The Forest Project in every aged care facility in Australia, and similar facilities all over the world.”
The Forest Project is currently seeking to get support via crowd funding, and the team at Epic is happy that the company has chosen to use the complex Unreal Engine 4 for its world.
Wang also said that the Epic tech was employed because it has the versatility and the flexibility required to power an experience that does not use the traditional mechanics of the video game space.
Jay Wilbur, a vice president at the video game developer, adds, “We are proud that Unreal Engine 4 has been able to help the team see its vision realized. We have worked hard to give Unreal Engine 4 the unparalleled versatility needed to bring any concept to life, and projects like the VDE and The Forest Project make those efforts worthwhile.”
At the moment, Epic Games is putting the finishing touches on Unreal Engine 4, which is set to be officially launched before the end of the year, with the team expecting that the first titles powered by it will be offered early next year.
The technology is designed to use all the hardware power introduced by the PlayStation 4 from Sony and the Xbox One from Microsoft, while keeping up with the improvements of the components on the PC market.
Recently, the studio also showed the engine running at almost native performance in Firefox.
Epic Games is working on Fortnite, a game based on the Unreal Engine 4, but it has also recently suggested that it is developing another new IP that will replace Gears of War.