The Living Reef
The Living Reef builds on the success of Virtual Reef released in 2013, with new environments, interactive learning experiences, and including the latest in reef science by QUT researchers.
A life-sized marine ecosystem, The Living Reef is an immersive underwater interactive experience of the Great Barrier Reef. This innovative project features hyper-realistic digital content created by The Cube studio. For example, the fish have been programmed with complex artificial intelligence (AI) controlling their behaviours. This AI system gives each fish a purpose which replicates fish behaviour in the wild – fish can look for food, avoid being eaten, or even swim in schools!
The Cube studio consulted with QUT's coral researchers Brett Lewis and Luke Nothdurft to make the coral appear more realistic. A specialised technical artist was employed to develop a 'space colonization algorithm' which allows each piece of coral to be grown using mathematical equations and to ensure every piece of coral is a unique, replicating the diversity of nature.
The Living Reef features the following interactive on-screen activities:
- Turtle Tangle: Using the touch screens, visitors can cut away ghost nets and help to free a turtle.
- Reef Ranger: A game giving visitors control of RangerBot – an underwater vehicle developed by QUT's Professor Matt Dunbabin. Beat the clock and remove the deadly Crown of thorns starfish – but be careful not to crash into the rocks!